As I think I’ve mentioned earlier we went to the movies on Christmas Day to see The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, the US version. I read the books by Stieg Larsson some years ago and I’ve also watched the original Swedish movie, so I was very curious to see what this would be like.
This English-language adaptation of the Swedish novel by Stieg Larsson follows a disgraced journalist, Mikael Blomkvist (Daniel Craig), as he investigates the disappearance of a wealthy patriarch’s niece from 40 years ago. He is aided by the pierced, tattooed, punk computer hacker named Lisbeth Salander (Rooney Mara). As they work together in the investigation, Blomkvist and Salander uncover immense corruption beyond anything they have ever imagined.
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I thought it was a good movie and I liked it for what it was, a cool action/drama film with lots of sex and violence. It really is well-made and thrilling and flashy and all that – but with the Swedish version in the back of my head this felt waaaay to much “Hollywood” for me.
I can’t help but compare the two versions, and while the Swedish movie didn’t have nearly as much action and effects it had more grey realism, and by being more realistic it felt much more grim and disturbing.
Or maybe it’s just that I’m Swedish myself and that’s why it, by nature, feels closer to home than anything Hollywood can come up with?
With that said, Rooney Mara was excellent as Lisbeth Salander! Her appearance is exactly the way I had pictured Lisbeth in my head. Noomi Rapace who played in the Swedish movies was great too, and I kinda liked her performance better, but she’s a bit too… I don’t know, pretty I guess. No matter how they dress her up and how much make-up they slap on her face they can’t hide that she’s a breathtaking beauty, and while reading the books I imagined Lisbeth to be a bit on the ugly side. I can’t choose between them to be honest, they both play the role to perfection. Different, but perfect.
Daniel Craig was also a bit more charismatic than Michael Nyqvist who played the Swedish Mikael Blomkvist. Altough it was a little embarrassing that he couldn’t pronounce his characters name properly
Now, I’m curious to know why they decided to make the movie like this when there’s already a Swedish version? I would’ve understood it if they had taken the plot and the characters and moved it to the US. If they had changed the names and settings and made a truly Americanized version with American characters and places – but this way, with all the Swedish names and places still intact (and it’s even filmed in Sweden), I can’t help but wonder if the only reason they made the movie was a) money and/or b) so that the American audience wouldn’t have to bother with the subtitles..?