Friday, January 27, 2012

Movie Review

A few of my lady-friends and I went to see the American version of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo last night.  Well, it wasn't last NIGHT, it was 5:00 in the afternoon, but the movie takes place in what seems like real-time so we were there for a LONG time.  (It's a long movie).  If you haven't seen the movies or read the books, you might want to skip this post.  You won't know what I'm talking about and then you'll get frustrated and think to yourself, "What in the hell is she talking about?  Doesn't she know I don't CARE about this stuff?" and then you'll stop reading this blog.  We don't want that to happen. 

I saw the Swedish version of all three of the movies made from the Millenium Trilogy.  I loved the Swedish version because I thought Noomi Rapace did a fantastic job as Lisbeth Salandar. 

Swedish Lisbeth
The only problem with her was that she wasn't waifish enough.  The American Lisbeth, played by Rooney Mara was very waifish.  She did a good job and was a very convincing Lisbeth, but why did she have blond eyebrows?  Why? 

American Lisbeth
Nobody looks good with blond eyebrows.

I liked that the American version was very detailed, as was the book, but it didn't follow the book as well as the Swedish version.  (Harriet was supposed to be in Australia, not London!)  And was Hans-Erik Wennerstrom killed in the books?  We couldn't remember but we didn't think he was.  The American Martin was very good.  Robin Wright as Erika was a good choice.  When we first saw her one of my lady-friends said, "She looks ROUGH!" but Erika is supposed to be in her fifties and look like she's in her fifties, and although Robin Wright probably is in her fifties, being an American actress, she looks like she's in her thirties, but for this movie she actually looked like a beautiful woman in her fifties.  Oh, never mind, I just looked her up on IMDB and she's only 45.  I guess living with Sean Penn will do that to a girl.

What I didn't like, well, no, I guess I can't say I didn't like anything about it, but what made me kind of say, "wha?" was the fact that the little northern island where Mikael goes to write about the Vangers is supposed to be freezing, freezing, arctic cold and they tried to convey that by shivering and bundling up, but right behind the people acting their asses off was a big lake that was obviously NOT frozen.  They did that in the Swedish version too.  Don't their lakes freeze?  Because here in Minnesota people are out driving cars on lakes.  Come on, Hollywood.  I also was a uncomfortable with the graphic rape scene, but I suppose that's the point of the scene anyway, isn't it?  It is integral to all three stories in the trilogy, so we have to know the details of it, don't we?  Yes.  But we don't like to see detailed rapes, do we?  No, we don't. 

Oh, and Mikael was supposed to go to a cushy Swedish prison for 18 months and THEN go live with the Vangers, but in the American version, he never went to prison.  Why didn't he go to prison?  They made a big deal about him getting convicted of libel but then he didn't go to prison.  The whole story was wrapped up inside of one year.  Not so, Hollywood.  It is supposed to take a long time for Mikael to get revenge on Wennerstrom.  Then the revenge is sweeter, isn't it?  Yes, it is. 

The American version didn't even really show the dragon tattoo on Lisbeth's back.  Of course, we got glimpses of it, but it was never really the focus. 

Oh, you know what I thought was curious?  The actors spoke English throughout the movie but with a sort of Swedish accent, but all the signs and writing (except for what we, the audience, were supposed to read) was in Swedish.  I kind of liked that. 

The end of the American version kind of drags on.  The screen went black between scenes and I kept expecting the credits to appear, but then there was more movie, and then more movie, and then a little more movie.  I thought they were setting up the big reveal that Harriet really was in Australia, but they never did.

For the most part I liked the movie.  Not as much as the Swedish version, but I thought it was very good.


  1. I will never finish this book!! I don't know if I'm just too tired at night, but it's taking me forever. I find that I'm re-reading certain pages over and over because of all the details. So I didn't want to see the movie until I finish the book, but now maybe I will. Thanks!

  2. I followed your instructions and skipped this.....The little I know of both the movie and the book tells me they are not my cup of tea!

  3. The Swedes definitely have better movies.

  4. I love the books.....I hate going to movies because I hate having people around me eating and snotting!! I like to hear the movie!
    My sister saw the American movie and said if you hadn't read the book you'd be very confused. Also the rape was bad.
    I'll wait for the video and I'll rent the Swedish ones.
    As far as the blond eyebrows WTF???


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