Movie of the Day: The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

Sean Stanley

Hey hey! RE: Girl With the Dragon Tattoo – David Fincher made a much more compelling film than the Swedish version. Perhaps it suffered from that typical Scandinavian restraint. The tension of the relationships was better established, and I loved how he kept letting the winter wind in! I have to say that despite a valiant effort by Ms. Rooney whom I like very much – her casting was not as dead-on as it was with Noomi Rapace. She had a hardness and a ferocity in her eyes that made it easier to believe that she was that girl – not just playing that girl. Did you like? The second instalment of the story is my favorite.


I’m all fucked up about it. There is a lot that I thought was great Fincher, but as a whole, it didn’t hit me like Social Network did last year. The pacing felt all wonky.

Ok, let’s start at the beginning, I avoided all versions of the story (the book, the swede version), because I heard early that Fincher was doing a version of it and I would never spoil the joys of a Fincher movie for myself. Means far too much.

Right off the bat, I got a fucking hard-on for that ridiculous Fincher music video credit sequence, set to Karen O doing the Immigrant Song. Rock. I was grinning.

Overall, I think I was just more surprised that that is the story that people were shitting themselves over. That thing was an international bestseller? I get the female empowerment, but other than that, why??? What’s so novel about that story?? It’s good, but it doesn’t seem to be something extraordinary enough to cross language barriers and have Americans get interested. Nah mean?

Now, I wonder if you know the story already that makes Fincher’s version bang on?? I thought it was clunky. And I kept wondering how the fuck this chick was so goddamn good at computers?? Where and how did this happen? I thought Rooney was fantastic. Good for her. Can’t compare to original obviously, but if the Rapace did better than that, wow. Craig was sufficient. I didn’t really buy the love story at all. I wish them getting down and dirty was more believable – the ‘hand in the shirt’ comment was the most believable part.

The first half hour of talking, followed by a scene for scene set up for a crazy-ass rape (that had girls in the audience heading for the exit) seemed very poorly paced to me. I thought they needed to blend all that together better, the impact was more out of shock than set-up. I thought relationships needed to be better paced… if that makes sense, like the ending felt like it had a lot to say and dragged on about it.

Another thing, I kept trying to figure out afterwards was why of all years of receiving dried flowers did this year’s flower set Plummer off… I think there is a reason in the film, I just lost it. And I wish the discovery of Stellan Skarsgaard was more of a revelation, like a ‘no fucking way’ rather than ‘okay, it’s that dude, which I assumed it was anyway, because he’s the only other recognizable face here’. And the only reason for these Hollywood wants is because Fincher was trying to make that anyway – it is a good piece of entertainment – so why not do it to the tits…

All of this said, it has stuck with my thoughts for the last 24 hours and I really enjoy so much of it… it reminds me the most of Zodiac… a well accomplished mystery/killer flick, but lacking that HOLYFUCKMYEYEBALLS of Seven, Fight Club, and, oddly enough, Social Network. I admire it more than I got wrapped up in it. And I’m still trying to figure out why people loved that story so much. Silence of the Lambs is far superior. Especially when it comes to wrapping up an ending.

Now, I want to go see it again on the big screen.

ps: I nominate this flick for best poster of the year.

pps: Also best use of music in a movie this year with ‘Sail Away’

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