Cinema review–The girl with the dragon tattoo

I always want to be more literary than I am but sadly my reading speed means I barely get through 6 books in a year (I’ve been trawling through Cloud Atlas since October). However, a few years ago my friend passed onto me the Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy which starts with The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. I was gripped by the series and was pleased with the news that Fincher (one of my favourite directors) would be directing the English language adaptation.

And boy am I glad I had read the book first. Not because the film was bad but because knowing who all the characters were and the relationships between them really helped me to be able to relax and just enjoy the 156 minutes of Fincher magic.

Set in Sweden (which impressed me as they didn’t choose to relocate to the US), the basic plot is in 1966 a girl is murdered and 40 years later her uncle is still being tormented by her killer who continues to send him gifts on his birthday the same as his niece would. So he hires disgraced journalist Mikael Blomkvist to see if he can find the killer even though everyone else failed. During his investigation he acquires the help of the troubled, sociopathic, computer hacking researcher Lisbeth Salander to assist him.

For two and a half hours I was sat watching the mystery unfold and loving every minute of it (apart from two infamous scenes which I will cover shortly). A good indication of if I am enjoying a film comes from when I check my watch and I can happily say I didn’t check it once!

So, what about the infamous scenes of a sexual nature? I squirmed and found them uncomfortable (which was the point I’m sure) but I really don’t think it was necessary to see at least one of them in as graphic detail as we did. A cut-away would have done just as good a job and there are some things that a viewer doesn’t need to see as part of the film. I’m a believer that if you are going to show something like that then you need a really good reason to show it so viscerally.

What about the soundtrack that has gotten so much praise? Well, it sounded very similar to The Social Network to me (both scored by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross) which isn’t necessarily a bad thing but doesn’t indicate much variety from the composers. I’ve downloaded it on Spotify so will give it another listen in the week to form a better opinion.

So in summary I really liked it. Fincher has done a fantastic job at adapting a loved novel and I really hope he completes the trilogy. They have a fantastic cast ready to go and a willing member of the audience right here who will be back for more!


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