Posted on 2/04/11 06:29 PM
Let me just start off this review by saying that yes, I have read the books. All three, in fact. And yes, they are fantastic books. I've seen the first and second Swedish movies, and I was psyched to go to an advanced screening of this one. Although I never think that these movies could in fact capture the detail of the three books, I must say, all three movies are worthy.
This movie is more than less a continuation of the second movie, The Girl Who Played With Fire, (spoiler), when Lisbeth get's shot by her father, Alexander Zalachenko, a Russian defector who severly beat her mother, causing permanent brain damage. I can't say this is exactly the best plot, maybe a little more elements would have been good, because I think that they were more lazy than not on the narrative in this one. And by the way, if you haven't seen the first and second, then the third films narrative will make no sense.
The whole cast from 'Fire' has returned, and as always, they are all fantastic. I don't know how the Swedish filmakers found Noomi Rapace, but all I can say is 'WOW". She really gets in depth with her character. One of the things I find ery intruiging and that definately shows her acting talents, is that even though she rarely speaks, and looks very bleak, I could really feel her emotions (sad, happy, mad..etc), because of her facial expressions.
Michael Niqvist is also reprising his role as Michael Blomkvist, and I think that he's perfect. Although the story is focusing more on Lisbeth, I could really tell that the guy tried to work and kind of, well, get INTO his characters reactions. I don't know all their names, but the rest of the supporting cast is equally as excellent as the two leads. I do have one complaint, though. Why is Berger so old? The person who played Erika Berger seemed like she was 15 years older than Blomkvist, although that may just have been my recolection of the book.
The writing is great. You can always tell what's going on, why this is going on, why she's doing that, why he's doing this. Also, I was never, ever, ever board in the 148 minute running time. While I realize that yes, some people may be, I was always interested in what a character was saying, where the direction of the film was going. I liked seeing Noomi Rapace stare somewhere that others might not want to watch. It held my attention and never let go. The film is also very intense; I mean I was more 'thrilled' in this than I was in 'My Soul To Take'.
So...in conclusion? Yes, I do realize this film is not for everyone. Not everyone likes the lenghth, not everyone likes the pacing, but I personally do. The acting is excellent, the plot is pretty interesting, the writing is great (oh, and don't worry about the subtitles, you totally get involved in the actual movie, and even though you're reading them, you barely even notice), and it's very thrilling. Even though it has a couple flaws, and I don't think it's as good as The Girl With The Dragon Tatoo, or the Girl Who Played With Fire, this is a worthy conclusion to an excellent trilogy.