Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

Since I majored in film, I suppose I should really spend more time talking about movies. After all, I watched a movie a day in my college years. I used to be all about movies. But times have changed. These days, I barely watch a movie a week, which is why an undertaking like going to the theater to see The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo is such a noteworthy experience for me.

The American remake of this film premiered in Japan just a short while ago. Japan has a relationship with Hollywood that I cannot quite comprehend. On one hand, films like Wolverine do not make it here for months after their American releases, yet films like Tin Tin come out in Japan before they premier in the USA. Color me baffled, and too lazy to Google what is surely an easy answer.

Seeing as the trilogy is immensely popular, I shouldn't have to bore you with the details of the plot. Suffice to say, the American movie is rumored to follow the books with more devotion than the original Swedish version. I did not have the foresight to read the novel or watch the Swedish version, so I went in blind, knowledgeable only of the basic story. I was generally pleased with the acting of the main characters, Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara. Mara, in particular, seemed to really absorb her character's habits and make them her own.

I initially found the plot rather dry, but trying to decipher the intricate connections between family members and characters make the time pass quickly. I actually watched the film twice, once at the theater and once alone, in order to take everything in. I noticed a lot of fine detail the second time around that made the film deserving of a second look. With any good mystery, it's worth watching twice if only to use your new knowledge to piece together clues you might not have noticed to begin with.

The ending of the film drags, but this is one of the places where it adheres to the novel steadfastly; although the climax is very intense, and falling action takes a long time. Still, you accept the prolonged ending in exchange for a serious sense of closure. The film leaves itself open for an inevitable sequel while still managing to leave the characters in places not too dynamic to make the audience irritated.

I would recommend the film to a friend. Note that it is exceedingly graphic, with both brutally violent and sexual scenes. While I would recommend the film to a friend, I would not recommend it to my grandmother.

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