Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Girl Who Played With Fire

All of the "Millennium" trilogy has already been filmed in Sweden and now Part Two arrives here with sub-titles for fans who can't wait for the American version. If you haven't read the books, you may still enjoy the film but also find it confusing and not really appreciate the nuance of the characters. The film is very much the middle of the story and will only be fully appreciated after viewing the final chapter.

To trim the story for film, excess parts have been exorcised and that's both good and bad. The entire first 150 or so pages of the book exist for mere minutes during the opening credits which is a good thing as that sub-plot was silly to begin with. What has been trimmed and very much missed, is the investigation from the police point of view. Detectives that figure so prominently in the book are reduced to minor roles as the film focus remains on Salander and Bloomqvist. A major plot point left out of the first film removes the explanation of why Lisbeth has stopped talking to Bloomqvist as the second film begins. There other other minor changes to hasten the film along but they can be forgiven.

The good news is that Noomi Rapace and Michael Nyqvist have returned as said characters and it's fun to watch them, once again, bring these people to life. I can't imagine anyone else as Lisbeth Salander at this point as Ms. Rapace loses herself in the role of a very complicated woman. Thankfully, they will continue to play the roles in the third and final film, " The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest".

While the first film, "Dragon Tattoo" introduced the characters in a great stand alone mystery, this time the story gets personal and much more convoluted. Reveals and sequences stretch the boundaries of credibility but still make for an exciting story. Like the book, this film ends on a cliffhanger so don't expect closure. For that you'll have to wait for "Hornet's Nest".

No comments: