I've been meaning to see what all the hype about The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo is about for quite a while. I bought the hardback novel for $1 at a thrift store a couple of years ago but never read it. I think I may have even purchased it on Kindle, but never got to that version either.
I even recently read the long New Yorker feature on dead author Stieg Larsson. So enough was enough. It was finally time for me to watch the 2009 Swedish movie on Netflix Instant (Daniel Craig is pegged to star in an upcoming Hollywood remake).
And if there's one thing the Larsson/Tattoo phenomenon confirms, it's that Americans (and indeed, most pop-culture lovers the world over) go wild for shock, awe, and taking things one step further than they've ever gone before.
A cynic might say this movie is simply a ripoff of The Silence of the Lambs. The two movies do have similarities, but a gripping, suspenseful murder mystery is pretty tough to argue against. Mikael Blomkvist is an investigative journalist who is being trailed by Lisbeth Salander, the title character, who is undergoing a string of highly troubling events.
The two eventually work through their disagreements and team up to get lost in a web of intrigue that includes industrialists, Nazis, sadistic rapists, and a general collection of puzzle pieces scattered all over the world. What more could you really ask for? This is a highly entertaining and complex (without actually making your brain hurt like, say, Lost does) populist tromp.
**** out of ***** stars