After losing his job because of a story he wrote, Mikael Blomkvist (Daniel Craig) is hired by a wealthy man, Henrik Vanger (Christopher Plummer) to investigate the death of his niece. Under the guise of writing a biography, Mikael interviews the family to discover what happened to the poor girl, who disappeared during a family event on the island 40 years ago.
To assist with Mikael’s efforts, Henrik brings in Lisbeth Salander (Rooney Mara). Lisbeth has had, shall we say, a rough upbringing. She is a ward of the state. Her trustees have treated her as less than a human being. I don’t know if this is because of her pierced, tattooed appearance and socially awkward demeanor. Or if that is a result of the way she has been treated.
Lisbeth is an expert hacker. And very resourceful. She was originally employed to investigate Mikael, to see if he would be able to pull off the investigation. The two start unraveling a sordid tail, that no family would want unearthed. Uncovering the truth puts their lives in danger.
This is based on a series of books which I have not read. From what I have been told by those who have read the books, is that they are very graphic. Very. Graphic. And the movie is no less graphic. From the secret the family is hiding, to the way Lisbeth’s trustees treat her, this movie is not for the faint of heart. I can honestly say I’ve never seen much of what was covered in this movie in any other film. But I don’t think it’s to the point of being gratuitous. I think it all plays into the story.
I feel much of the story surrounding Lisbeth outside of this particular investigation could have been omitted, and you still would have had a good movie. But I think it all plays into why she is the way she is, thus making it essential to the story, in general.
The acting and story are well done. The film really give you the feeling of being in northern Sweden and the tension that runs through the Vanger family. And I have to say, after seeing this movie and the way it ended, I am intrigued. I’m almost anxiously awaiting the next film to see how it continues.
I can’t recommend this for a first date movie. Or a second date movie. It’s not a date night kind of movie. Unless your date has read the books and knows what they have in store. It will make for an awkward drive home. If you wait for it to come out on DVD, do not try to watch this movie while the kids are awake, lest the walk in at an inopportune moment. Outside of that, it’s a well done movie that is definitely worth seeing. For a certain audience.