I don’t know whether it is right or not but I couldn’t help but walk out of theater with a smile on my face after seeing this film. So here, by popular demand is my review of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.
One of my many theories is that anything with a large enough fan base will inevitably be offended. But having read the book and seen the 2009 Swedish film I can happily say that this was a great film.
Much like Peter Jackson’s adaption of Lord of the Rings, chronologically this film is diffrent and some of the lines said in the book by some characters are changed to different characters. But other than that this film is faithful to the original source. With a slightly simpler ending change. It’s not as faithful as the Swedish version, not just because that one was Swedish.
Some changes made in the 2009 film are the same in this one. Which suggests that this one could be more of a remake than a re-adaption but it is just far more cinematic, where the Swedish version is a TV movie this is just more of a solid film.
The film opens with this spectacular James Bond Esq title sequence that was so unexpected it left me a little speechless.
Anyone who knows the source material will know that this is full of rapes, murder’s and brutal disfigurement. But I don’t know whether it’s David Fincher’s presentation of violence within his films or just the bittersweet ending of the film itself that left me so placid about the content of TGWTDT. The camera work is at times stunning using hints of CGI but in the subtlest of ways.
The acting is great even if at time Rooney Mara is a little wooden, not as good as Noomi Rapace. Daniel Craig manages to act through out the entire film with his glasses half off his face. Christopher Plummer is perhaps one of the most underrated actors to date. The mostly English or Sweddish cast are good too, with Joely Richardson, Robin Wright, Stellan Skarsgard and an outstanding Steven Berkoff who I haven’t seen since Octopussy and Rambo First Blood Part 2.
The only thing this film is missing is a real drive, and it fails to pack that ending punch that you wait so long for. The ending kind of just happens. Obviously converting a book into a film, you have to condense a lot of it into a shortened version to create more pace, and the way they have re-arranged events to create this is good but, they condensed it so much that the final half hour just go’s along with an almost mellow feeling compared to the rest of the film.
This film lacks a certain punch or heart, a drive; and hopefully in part 2 this will be resolved. But this is an outstanding film and probably one of David Fincher’s best in recent years.
But still I recommend the book and the Swedish version. All in all there isn’t much between the U.S. version and the Swedish version, other than Rapace is more believable as the title character.
Best line in the film: It has to be Lisbeth Salander’s t-shirt that just has-“Fuck You. You Fucking Fuck”- Classic