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on 3 October 2014
'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo' is a crime novel by the late Swedish author and journalist: Stieg Larsson. It is the first book of the so called Millennium trilogy which, when published posthumously in 2005, became a best-seller in Europe and the United States

The main characters are Mikael Blomkvist who is a journalist, publisher and part-owner of the Stockholm based monthly magazine: Millennium and Lisbeth Salander, a freelance surveillance agent, researcher and brilliant--but deeply disturbed--computer hacker. They team up to investigate the disappearance of a young girl in 1966 and, in so doing, uncover the dark history of one of the most powerful families in the country.

The Swedish film production company Yellow Bird produced film versions of the Millennium Trilogy, all released in 2009, beginning with The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, directed by Danish filmmaker Niels Arden Oplev with Michael Nyqvist as Blomkvist and Noomi Rapace as Salander.

In my opinion, 'The Girl is the Dragon Tattoo' movie is a darkly gripping adaption of the book. It successfully captures Larsson's low opinion of contemporary Swedish Society. His favourite themes are all portrayed in the film in a way that spares no one's feelings. These are violence against women, the incompetence and cowardice of investigative journalists and the moral bankruptcy of capitalism. There is also a strong emphasis of the virulent Nazism that he perceives as still festering away at the heart of the country. Larsson may have a point; it is worth bearing in mind that Swedes served under German officers in the Nordland Regiment of the notorious 5th SS Panzer division during World War 2.
Recommended but be aware that there are some very nasty scenes indeed, particularly of a sexual sadistic nature.

Chris Allen is a Technical Author and writer; his latest crime novel is: Parallel Lifetimes
He also has the following books available through Amazon:
Reality Shaper: The Quantum Detective
The Beam of Interest: Taken by Storm
Hypnotic Tales 2013: Some Light Some Dark
Call of the Void: The Strange Life and Times of a Confused Person: 1
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on 9 December 2014
This is the original Swedish version of the film (Spoken in English) and well worth watching. Unlike the American version this is the first of a Trilogy of which I highly recommend.

If you get the American version, watch this trilogy FIRST, as although the storyline is the same, the American version is set in an American scenario, not in Sweden, so the attitudes and environment are different.
The American one is different enough to watch and enjoy as a film in it's own right, even though the plot is the same. But if you watch the American one first, you will be initially disappointed with the Swedish one as it has different actors, which takes a while to get used to.
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on 28 July 2012
Having read the Stieg Larsson trilogy, and found them amongst the most gripping modern crime novels I've tried, I was interested to see this TV treatment. Often visual renditions of a story you have become attached to can jar against your own pre-formed images of the characters.

In this case I was very impressed. Lisbeth Salander isn't quite as I imagined, but the gap is not a large one and proved no difficulty; she is ceertainly believable in the role. Blomkvist is very good - definitely close to Larsson's character IMHO.

As usual in dramatisations, the story has been simplified to save time; but I didn't think this damaged it significantly. Blomkvist's cover story ("writing the Vanger family history") is dropped entirely, and the Wennerstrom scandal cut back very heavily, but after all these are secondary to the main story and don't impede the dramatic development. And the more brutal elements of the story, which I think were pretty important to Larsson, are not compromised upon.

I'm fascinated now to see how volumes 2 and 3 would be treated by the same team!
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on 6 February 2011
Thoroughly enjoyed the film. I was anxious to see the Swedish version before the American remake is out. Don't worry if you hate reading sub-titles - you can select the English dubbed version and believe me it is not like the awful dubbing of old - it's very cleverly done and once you're into the story you don't even notice it.

Of course the film simplifies the book; Blomskvist takes on the case of looking for Harriet without the 'guise' of writing the families history as a cover, which happens in the book, and there is no exploration of Blomvists relationship with other women which is quite a key feature of the book. However, to keep the film to a reasonable length I can understand why they couldn't include everything.

The film doesn't hold back on any of the voilence and all the leads are fantastic in their roles; particularly the actress who played Salander. Visually I was expecting the actor who played Blomskvist to be more 'wirey' - he's quite well built in this - but the acting was spot on.

It also struck me that the older actresses in this film were allowed to look real - wrinkles and all. I suspect in the American version everyone will look botoxed to perfection!

If you loved the book the film will not disappoint.
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on 3 August 2014
good functional thriller. Keeps you gripping the seat, not memorable but you won't be thinking about anything else when you're watching it. I bought this because i read Noomi Rapace really acted the character well, which is true. I think it shows that he was alive when this was published in the far tighter editing than the others. I bought english language mixed length DVDs (trilogy) - i didn't realise there were cut and longer versions - watched them all in Swedish with subtitles (option on all of them) and every time saw the uncut version. This one is worth watching the uncut version. The second is terribly wordy, watch the short version. Third, you choose. I think, looking back, the book would have been better than the film, but i knew i'd only do one.
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on 11 October 2010
...but then, presenting the book in all its complexity, both plot-wise and character-wise, is probably an impossible task (and the producers have also to make something that the general non-novel-reading public will also watch). As a result, the story-line is changed and simplified, and unfortunately changed into something rather unlikely, and one important character is omitted completely. However, for me this is compensated by the excellence of the central characters Mikael and Lisbeth, whom I could see as the characters in my head from the book. The slow-burn feeling from the book is also retained. The violent scenes are graphic, but then Mr. Larsson's books are in a way a crusade against violence against women, even in apparently placid, civil Sweden. Perversion and exploitation know no bounds.
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on 28 December 2010
Really loved the book even though I will admit the first part is a bit hard going....had to carry on to see if all the hype was true and was obviously glad I did.
The film however would have let me down a little had I not known all the little bits that bonded it all together , theres alot you dont get in the film and its a good length as it stands so couldn't have had more content. Its always funny watching a movie adaptation and seeing those characters you have envisaged yourself on screen , the casting , I think was fantastic and spot on .....don't know how the Hollywood version with Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara (glad shes unknown) is going to compare. Its a great film much enhanced by reading the book first.
Have finished the trilogy so onto the second film .
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on 12 August 2010
There has been a frequently expressed view that,compared to the book,the film omits a lot of background detail.
In Sweden,all three films in the series have been issued in a 180 minute TV version,so the extra 26 minutes may answer some of the criticism of missing background detail.
Hence my title question.
Hopefully,the extended version will be made available in the UK.
As for the film as released in the UK.
It is stunning,with excellent performances from all concerned,particularly Noomi Rapace,who is a revelation.
Several of the cast are known from Swedish TV series such as 'Wallander',and 'Beck'.
Why would Hollywood even be contemplating a remake?
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on 11 December 2010
I have listened to this trilogy on audiobooks and was amazed at the quality of the stories and the narration (by Saul Reichlin) and wondered whether the films would come up to expectations! This, the first one, certainly did! Before watching the films however, I would highly recommend either reading the books or listening to the audiobooks - the stories are very involved and would help greatly when trying to understand why Lisbet Salander is the way she is! Once you have started on this trilogy you will want it to go on for ever; so involved you become with the characters - especially Mikael Blumkvist and Lisbet Salander! Just wonderful - the best for years!
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on 15 November 2013
This film is superb
I was was expecting to watch a subtitled film but it has an English language version the quality of which is good.
Noomi is especially brilliant in the lead role.

The books were far better than I expected and the films do not disappoint either obviously some parts of the book were missing and a couple of times I felt they were important things but that may just be because I had read the books.
Over all they are hugely enjoyable films and I highly recommend all 3.
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