The Swedish Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)
It is also probably one of the best films of its genre for 2009.
The film is directed by Niels Arden Oplev and stars Michael Nyqvist, Noomi Rapace, Sven-Bertil Taube and Peter Haber.
The story focuses on investigative journalist, Mikael Blomkvist (Nyqvist), who is engaged by Henrik Vanger (Taube) to solve the forty year old mystery of the disappearance of his niece, Harriet. Unfortunately, he has only six months to complete the assignment before he is sent to prison on libel charges.
Along the way, he receives unexpected help from the ‘girl with dragon tattoo’, Lisbeth Salander (Rapace), a twenty-four year old brilliant but troubled hacker who has been covertly surveillance him.
This story is brilliant and keeps you on the edge of your seat until the very end. Unlike many crime thrillers that give out the identity of the killer in the middle of the film, this one keeps you guessing until the very end.
I had, on several occasions, wrongly guessed the identity of the killer. However, once the revelation is made, all the pieces of the puzzle start to fall in place.
The film is in Swedish but there is a dubbed version if you don’t like reading subtitles.
There is a 2011 American production with Daniel Craig (Casino Royale, Defiance) taking the lead role as Blomkvist. Unfortunately, I believe, this has marred the purity of the story like they did with ‘Let Me In’ and many other beautiful films that have been Americanized.
There is probably a need to understand the workings of mental institutions and such to understand why twenty-four year old Lisbeth, who is on parole, needs a guardian. You might also want to familiarize yourself with Swedish holidays like Children’s Day and their stance during World war Two (WW2).
The original version was really enjoyable and I hope to review more of the coming series, The Girl Who Played with Fire and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest.