The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)

Solid, but not mind blowing..

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)
Directed By: Niels Arden Oplev (Fukssvansen)

The Prologue
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (original title in Swedish: Män som hatar kvinnor – “Men Who Hate Women”) is the first novel in a trilogy called the “Millennium Trilogy”. Naturally a movie was made based on the book in Sweden and it was released on February 25, 2009. The other two novels were also made into movies as well. This of course has led to an American re-make in the works but today we are sticking with the Sweden film, the original film. Will I like it? I dunno, people seem to be raising the expectations bar really high with it..perhaps too high.

The Movie
Journalist Mikael Blomkvist has been setup for a crime he didn’t commit when he is then asked to investigate the disappearance of woman who’s been missing and assumed dead for 40 years. Along the way he gets help from a young lady named Lisbeth Salander who originally was paid to hack into Mikael’s computer to dig up dirty on him. Can the journalist and the odd hacker solve the mystery? Or will they be able to even survive the whole ordeal?? Watch and find out damn it!!

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a long film. Maybe a little too long for my taste but that’s just me. It takes it’s time setting up our main two characters and gives us all the back-story we’d need for the actual plot and then some. But at the base of the film I find we have a common “who done it?” plot that while good, it’s just not amazing. Lisbeth’s sub-plot however early in the film is the main thing holding my attention for sure.

It is with the side story with Lisbeth that I feel the film gains it’s legend that it seems to have. The stuff that goes down with her and her creepy probation officer are very weird, disturbing, and at times hard for someone to watch. While the film on it’s own without it wouldn’t be by any means a bad film, I just think without these scenes I’m speaking of the film wouldn’t have any teeth and wouldn’t be nearly as praised as it is. I didn’t expect THIS type of stuff in thriller but I suppose if horror fans were praising it I should have known something like that was in it.

It’s also due to this sub-plot that I believe the film runs as long as it does (clocking in at 180 min for this extended version). But oddly enough without it I don’t think the films would have been as good as a whole, perhaps that could have cut other parts? Maybe I’d enjoy it a little more had I went with the 152 minutes cut but that’s just me. It’s very rare that I enjoy long movies. Not saying that I didn’t like this, because I did. It just was a little long in the tooth to me and thus took away a little enjoyment from the over all movie for me. And while you may say it’s my own fault for not watching the shorter cut, until I did research for this review, I didn’t know there was HA! Stick that in your judgmental pipes and smoke it!

The acting here, while naturally not in English, is very good. I don’t say I’m an expert on that in films but if it shines and is good I think it’s clear no matter the language it’s being done in. Michael Nyqvist (Mikael) and especially Noomi Rapace (Lisbeth) do superb jobs in this movie and made it all the more enjoyable. While it won’t be the type of stuff a lot of people like, and while it by no means blew me away like I heard it would, I can safely say that The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a film very much worth the watch.

The Conclusion

I did like it but I didn’t love it. I don’t think I want to see The Girl Who Played with Fire, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest, or the American remake of this. But there’s nothing wrong with this movie..I just think it’s a little long running for MY taste. So I guess to sum it up, it’s good but not great.

The Rating (7/10)