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I remember that I very much liked the first film of Stieg Larsson’s Millenium Trilogy, Män som hatar kvinnor / The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and that was  in particular because of the very… how to say… Swedish atmosphere, snow crunching under boots, all a bit slow and reflective, slightly depressed and hostile atmosphere, but not in a Kaurismaeki kind of way, the characters actually can be imagined to not die of depression.

At the time of watching, I knew very little about the books, and only afterwards learned that quite a bit of back story of the female lead character Lisbeth was moved from the second book into the first film, to better indicate how deep an abyss we are dealing with here. Even though, I found it a bit odd that ocassionally the focus was so much on her, while in terms of storyline she really did not have a particularly big part. I liked the journalist on his hunt for a family mystery, and I liked the weird setting on a remote island.

Now in the second part the focus is a bit more on Lisbeth, the setting is less strange, and the plot a bit less interesting to the point that I had to read it up at IMDB – while the first film’s plot is still firmly stuck in my brain. I think the second film’s story is just not as good – or at least not as well written as the first one.  The actors are all very fine, and I repeat my notion that it is a sheer idiocy to refilm the whole thing in an American setting. But the movie experience is disappearing in a big blur of violence and lesbian affection (I remember that).

Maybe it’s worth re-visiting the film once the third part is out and doing a big triple play, but for now it feels as if The Girl Who Played with Fire is somehow stuck as a transition between different stories that have been and will be told.

via The Girl Who Played with Fire (2009).

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  1. […] remember that the second part of the Millenium trilogy left me rather distanced (…). The story less clear cut compared to the first one, some people seem to be waiting for something […]

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