The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest
I thoroughly enjoyed the first book in this series, kind of enjoyed the second book and gave up on the third one after a couple of hundred pages. My enjoyment of the film series is totally reversed. This is, by a small country mile, the best in the trilogy, avoiding the sort of gratuitous and unsavory sexual violence of the first movie and the ELE* of the second picture. To sum it up crudely; the first movie is a mystery, the second a thriller and the third a courtroom drama. But on this occasion, unlike almost every other example in film history, the courtroom drama comes up trumps.
There has been an ongoing debate about whether Hollywood should be remaking Swedish language movies (Let The Right One In and the Millennium trilogy). What I would stress for any doubters of David Fincher’s eagerly anticipated remake is that whilst Let The Right One In is a masterpiece, this trilogy is only good because of the strength of its source material. The films are average, the acting is good but the presentation is uniquely Scandinavian and unexceptional.
On the acting front (and this is an important part of a story built on the strength of its characters) I have confidence that Rooney Mara can step up to the plate in replacing Noomi Rapace, who is so unsympathetic that I still struggle to see why everyone is so excited about her. It’s a gift of a role and one that she scrapes by in, but nothing more. I will wait to see Sherlock Holmes 2 before deciding whether this Swedish actress can really fill her boots in Hollywood. Nyqvist and Craig are built in a very similar mould, so that should represent a much simpler swap.
Thus ends a decent foreign language series. Good fun and no harm, but not a collection of masterpieces by a long stretch. Expect Fincher to blow this out the water.
* ELE = Excessively Lengthy Exposition