The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Movie Review

If any of the readers of this post have read the book ‘The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo’ and intend to watch the movie sometime soon (albeit not in Indian theatres given that the Indian Govt has decided to ban its release in India, will soon write a separate post on that topic), request you folks to read this review with great caution as there are quite a few spoilers ahead which might end up ruining the entire movie watching experience for you.

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CAUTION – MOVIE SPOILERS AHEAD
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When I first heard that Daniel Craig was going to be portraying the role of Mikael Blomkvist, to be honest I didn’t know how to react. While Craig brought the smartness and tough-as-nails personality to the character, whether he would be able to portray the more sensitive, thoughtful part of Blomkvist still remained a question to me. However, given that David Fincher (of The Social Network, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Fight Club fame) has taken liberties with the original script from the book as well as a few liberties with the character sketches themselves meant that Craig does more than an admirable job of translating Blomkvist’s character in the movie.

Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander was, is and I guess will remain pretty much of an unknown entity, at least until all three movies of the Millennium trilogy are released. I am pretty sure that by the end of the trilogy she will become quite the sensation over the world with her well researched, and well crafted portrayal of the complicated character that Salander has been made to be by Stieg Larsson.

Christopher Plummer as Henrik Vanger is extraordinarily competent and manages to breathe life into the character despite the fact that the movie does not spend as much time with him as the book does. The fact that he won the Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor in 2012 (albeit for a different movie, Beginners) means that he brings a lot of competence and life to this character. Although I wish that the screenplay had devoted more time to the character, well, to be honest I wish the screenplay had devoted more time to all the other characters as well, but then the movie would have ended up being a 4 hr movie then.

In any case, am not going into more details of the plot of the movie here but will restrict myself to saying that the primary premise of the movie deals with the investigation of the missing case of Harriet Vanger who disappeared approximately 40 yrs ago and Henrik Vanger uses the services of fallen journalist Mikael Blomkvist to try and find out what really happened to Harriet. How Mikael comes to use the assistance of Lisbeth Salander, how he unravels the mystery using old photographs, how the story unfurls makes the crux of the movie.

Like I mentioned before the only couple of things that I had complaints with was the fact that the screenplay chose to gloss over almost all the characters, including the leading ones of Blomkvist and Salander. While I am Ok with the Vangers being overlooked, my personal opinion was the character sketches of Blomkvist, Salander and Erica Berger should have been dealt with in a little more detail, even at the cost of lengthening the movie. Given that there are two more movies to follow with these characters, it would have helped the cause of the trilogy.

Apart from that, notable mention must be made of the fact that the background score for the movie adds a lot to its entire character. Trent Razor and Atticus Ross have done an awesome job of ensuring that the edginess and quirkiness of the Salander character is aptly captured in the music as well. Overall the entire sound recording and the background score of the movie add a lot to its already wonderful premise.

Related links

Wikipedia link to the movie
Movie preview of this movie

Trailer

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2 thoughts on “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Movie Review

  1. This movie looks like a definite thriller! I read the plot, I know I kind of cheated but I wanted to see what the fuss was about. From what I read it seemed really good. I thought the character Lisbeth was weird and troubled but after reading what I read, I understand or at least want to understand her. I can’t wait for it to become available on Blockbuster@Home. I haven’t seen the original nor read the book but you can bet I plan on doing that as soon as I see this movie. Since working for DISH, Blockbuster@Home was introduced to everyone. I like using it so I can stream over 100,000 movies to my home. I can even get the latest games mailed to my home. So I never miss out on any of the new releases. I am counting down the days till The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo is released on Blockbuster@Home.

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