Film Review: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

A punchy name for a book title, a bit of a mouthful but oh-so-perfect once you meet the main character.  However for the purpose of this review and preserving my fingers, lets call it Dragon Tattoo.  Muchier.  Moving right along now, -confession time.  I bypassed the initial book and went straight to film, not the original Swedish version either but the super-sleek-recently-released English one.  Why?  It's 'complicated'.  In truth, I made an attempt to read the first chapter of Dragon Tattoo only to find the translation a little hard going, and I'm not thick... as least, I'm not as thick as the novel itself and lets be honest, its pretty bloody hefty.  As with other books translated from their original language, I always find 'something' missing.  Anyhow, in the end, I happily skipped along to the picture house with my friend G, -who by coincedence didn't bother reading the book either.  Here's G's reasons in his own words:

Me:  Why didn't you read the book?
G: *intake of breath*  Well, I'm actually a book snob - I  *bleep bleep* hate reading a *bleep bleep* book which every *bleep bleep* one else is reading at the same time."
Me:  Hmmm.
G: It's like those bloody Da Vinci books,  I refused to read *bleep bleep* Dan Brown's books."  
Me:  Yeah, I know what you mean.... I just *bleep bleep* Dan Brown."

You can decipher that conversation later, let's get back to Dragon Tattoo - my review.  In a nutshell - its a psychological-crime-thriller centred around a young-troubled-seriously-smart-motorcycle-riding-tattooed-scary-as-bleep-techie-geeky-girl who 'assists' a disgraced journalist with a forty-year-old murder mystery set on a private island, in Sweden, in the dead of winter.

What I liked
-  Dragon Tattoo's silky-smooth-inky-black opening credits.  Sublime.
-  Daniel Craig at his best as said disgraced journalist.
-  Rooney Mara is brilliant as the disturbed girl with uber-techie-geekster skills.
-  The CAT (see it to understand), this feline creature has devilish acting abilities.
-  I loved the setting, an unforgiving Swedish winter on a private island, complete with eccentric family members, all carefully guarding their secrets.
-  A talented support cast - Robin Wright, Stellan Skarsgard, Christopher Plummer -  all bloody marvellous in their characters.


What I didn't like so much:
- In the darkness of the picture house, I could feel the heftiness of the book pressing down on me.  It was such a complex storyline squeezed into a short time span, I felt my head-spinning with all the sub-plots and characters.  In short, the layers within the plot confirmed my decision not to read the novel.
  
-  Even without reading the novel, you should be able to pick the killer.  I know, I know but I won't spoil it for you.

Overall:  Aside from the screaming-cringing bits when I hid under my coat, I actually sat on the edge of my seat for this one.  Be warned, as a psychological thriller, some scenes are not for the faint-hearted.  I definitely recommend viewing if you enjoy crime fiction and Daniel Craig squirming.  It's a good'un. 




Videocredits via youtube

A/N:  Hello lovelies, I hope your week has been kind and that your writing projects are coming along, swimmingly.  Myself, crazy doesn't quite cover my past week in parallel universes and I've been unable to blog per normal schedule.  I will be moving 'house' this month and as such, I will take a blogging break for the remainder of February.  Don't worry though, I shall be floating in the ether somewhere.  Have a lovely weekend and hope to catch up with you all soon.  Talei xox



Comments

  1. Such a dark, intense movie, isn't it? But Rooney Mara was brilliant. Good luck moving house!

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    1. Good summary, dark and intense it was! Rooney Mara was sensational. I'm amazed at the transformation. She rocks! And thanks so much, I'm hoping the move is a smooth one.

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  2. Funny! I tortured my husband by taking him to see the original film version and no backstory. I thought he was going to walk out during the above scene!! ;)

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    1. Hahaha. Yes, well strangely, it got very quiet in certain scenes and sharp intakes of breath. I did find myself laughing in parts where others didn't though. Great to hear your husband made it through the Swedish version, I've heard only good things about that one too! ;)

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  3. I think I'm going to see this one! I looked at the book for a few minutes at the bookstore and didn't read it. Thanks for the review Talei!

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    1. Ah, see I did the whole skim through in the bookstores and then I found a copy at my friend (who happens to speak Icelandic), now I'm not sure that means anything but she loved the book and didn't mind the translation. I found the English translation a little 'painful' to be honest. Hope you get to see the movie, definitely worthy of a viewing!

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  4. Thanks for the review. It's on my list to watch, not read. I'm happy it's you moving and not me :) See you in March.

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    1. Hello my lovely Texan friend! Definitely check out the film, I'd say the book too but that would be hypocritical and I'm never that *ahem*. Catch you soon! ;)

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  5. Hahaha yeah this is another series I'm still gathering strength for. One day... ;-)

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  6. I am with G... I won't read the books everyone else is reading and I wasn't about to read these books. However, I thought about going to this movie. I love Daniel Craig was and your review makes it even more tempting- but I think I will abstain. I am not into psychological thrillers and I don't care for gore.

    Hope things go well with the move, dearest! I hate all the carrying of crates and unpacking but sometimes it just has to be done. Don't work too hard. I am off to unbury us from our latest snow storm so I will let you go. *hugs & kisses*

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    1. Hi D, thanks so much. You know, its snowing outside my window right now but I suspect its nothing compared to where you are. We're expecting 5-10cm, London will grind to a halt transportation wise tomorrow, no doubt. And Monday will it'll be slush. Still... looks pretty for a few hours. Good luck with the shovelling? ;) xx

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  7. I read all the books and saw all the Swedish versions. I can't wait to see the lovely, brilliant, and dishy Daniel Craig in this version!

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    1. Oh, you are good! I'm impressed! DC certainly a drawcard in this one but the rest of the cast are pretty damn good too. Especially the cat. ;)

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  8. Daniel Craig is superb as Bond, so that's a plus for me with this. I read your review with interest. My son and his wife recently saw the movie and said it was "graphic." I'm not as much into graphic as I was when I was younger. I've debated trying the book. Thanks for the review, Talei, which has given me some more information to go on in making my decision.
    Ann Best, Author of In the Mirror & Other Memoirs

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    1. Hmmm, 'graphic' certainly covers a few of the 'raw' scenes, with this genre though, you can't take out those scenes as it would lessen the entire story. Overall, its still a well made film, quite complex plot - which again, if I suspect if reading the book, you'd require both patience and stamina to stick with. Still, at least you can enjoy DC's Bond movies eh? ;)

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  9. I love the way you review books/movies! and I love the conversation with G. It's the same way I've felt so many times. :)

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    1. Oh, thank you! So sweet, I'm chuffed you enjoy them. I love writing them and only wish I could do more. And its funny how the conversation with G has struck a chord with everyone. We secretly don't like to be told what to read. Me thinks. ;-)

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  10. I just loved your review! Your conversation with G was hilarious! My week has been nothing but me being helpless with this cold. I swear it won't go away. I have heard great things about this version of the movie. I have to say I haven't read the book or seen the original. I read the Wikipedia for this movie, I know I cheated! I couldn't help it; I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. Anyways from what I read I really want to see it now. Like now! I already have it saved in my queue on Blockbuster@Home. So when it becomes available to rent I can stream it right to my TV in the comfort of my home. It’s a pretty neat option, since I started working at DISH; Blockbuster@Home was introduced to the world. It’s a great package to get the latest movies and games. Maybe after I see this version, I’ll read the book and watch the original movie.

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    1. Thanks so much! Hope you enjoy the film too. I enjoyed it (just watch out for the squeamish bits). Lovely to have you drop by my blog too. ;)

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  11. Happy Birthday Talei! I hope there is plenty of champers to celebrate the occasion. Here's to another wonderful year!!! *clink, clink*

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    1. Thank you darlink! *clink clink* ;-)

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