Review of 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo'

the_girl_with_the_dragon_tattoo.jpg Mikael Blomkvist (Daniel Craig, suitably scraggly) has a bit of a problem. He has recently been found guilty by a Swedish court of slander when he writes an article for his magazine, Millennium. At this awkward time Henrik Vanger (Christopher Plummer, on fine form) approaches him with an offer he can't refuse: A break from his legal headaches in Stockholm to investigate the disappearance of Vanger's niece Harriet 40 years previously under the cover of writing Vanger's autobiography. It is soon apparent that there is something far more sinister afoot.

Lisbeth Salander (disturbingly played by Rooney Mara) is a troubled young woman who is sexually attacked (very graphically) by her new legal guardian (after her previous guardian, and friend, suffers a heart attack) and exacts her brutal revenge. Lisbeth is also a world-class hacker and investigator who is soon drawn into the mystery of Harriet's disappearance…and the many murders surrounding it.

This is rated “18” here in the UK for good reason. The scenes with Salander and her new guardian are as graphic as it can get without being completely banned from normal cinema screens (I think many watching will wince at scenes in question). The movie is as compelling as the book and despite the long dialogue sequences and the complexity of the plot the audience at the screening I attended were well attentive to what was happening on the screen. Ok, not a true adaptation of the book, it is still as close as one can expect in a movie that is less than four hours long (and even so…). Craig is actually quite convincing as Blomkvist and actually showing a bit of emotion (as opposed to when he plays Bond).

Interesting and enthralling. Don't expect a lot of high-speed action, this is definitely one for those that like a bit of thought in their viewing entertainment. Very convincing and well acted all around for such a difficult piece. It will be interesting to see if they decide to do an English adaptation of the next two books…

Rating: “Really good but I have some issues”

Review Date: 2011-12-28

Directed by: David Fincher

Studio: Columbia Pictures

Year: 2011

Length: 158 minutes

Genre: Action/Adventure

Other reviewed films by David Fincher: