Friday, 18 February 2011

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

Noomi Rapace, the titular female with the ink. A tough
act to follow for the US version...  image silive
At the weekend Mark Kermode presented the BAFTA award for Best Foreign Language Film to The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. A Swedish movie based on Stieg Larsson's bestselling novel. In addition to the BAFTA it has won widespread acclaim from almost all major critics. Sadly, it wasn't hard to find some bad reviews for it...:
The only way in which you could like this film is if you hadn't read the book and/or had a cinema-appreciation-bypass (It is true I haven't read the books, they're on my to-do list, but I have certainly not had a 'cinema-appreciation-bypass'. As a man who owns in excess of 300 films, ranging from modern blockbusters to cinema classics, I think it's fair to say I can appreciate cinema. And what about all the critics? 87% of them liked it, are you saying that the likes of Mark Kermode, Kim Newman and Roger Ebert have no appreciation for cinema? If you are then you've clearly had an intelligent thought bypass...). The plot is so cut down from the original that it has removed all of the characterisation and soul from the players (If you've read the book, then I presume you must have seen how long the book is. It would be impossible to transfer everything to film in a film 5 hours long. And there is certainly some characterisation left. Enough for anyone who hasn't read the book.), and just presents a series of barely connected events that leave the plot seeming very contrived (It works fine as it is. If I was being kind, I'd say maybe your love of the book has blinded you to the brilliance of the film. But I'm not. So I'll say you're a prick instead.). I guarentee guarantee that 95% of the people that have read and enjoyed the books will hate this film (I suspect not. I know more than one person who has read the book and loves the film). The style looks cheap and amateurish too (Cheap and amateurish is going somewhat far. It was made on a pretty tight budget, so is not the most attractively shot piece of cinema, but the direction is perfectly adequate.). 
As a lover of the books (We'd noticed...), I knew that there was always a risk that the film would be parred (I think you mean pared...) down sopmewhat, as with many adaptations (As I explained, it is necessary to edit, but the plot still works in its film incarnation). The Potter films are not as good as the books, but they are not-bad films (They are indeed eminently watchable. But this is much better than all of them). Dragon Tattoo is the most dissapointing film from a good novel since the Golden Compass ruined Pullman's Northern Lights (There's no need for that kind of language certainly...).
Well, here's another for your delectation:
I think I must have goggles on as when I watched this film last night, I was gutted!! (Are they moron goggles?)
I have just started the 2nd book and love it as much as the 1st so I was very excited about seeing the film, what a mess!!! (What did you do? Spill curry on the floor? Because the film is very much not a mess.)
The acting was 2nd rate (Yes, that'll be why Noomi Rapace has been widely praised for her performance. And why Roger Ebert applauded her "unwavering intensity") and the whole thing looked like a poor 1970's porno (I've never seen a 1970s porno, but I can imagine what they'd be like. You're still wearing those moron goggles aren't you?),it was only because I had read the book that it stayed on for the duration (It's a really good film. It didn't once test my patience. Or the patience of either of the two people I was watching it with)
I do hope that someone will do this amazing writing some justice and make a better film with some less wooden acting (The acting is brilliant. Especially from the two leads. No woodiness here.) and less cheapness. (David Fincher is making an English language version. Most critics are despairing over this. Except Claudia Winkleman. Except she's not a critic, just a presenter.)
will be hoping for better !!!! (What are you expecting? A modern Citizen Kane?)
And here's one more to finish us off. Be warned. A rant is forthcoming...:
 Having read the book I was excited to be getting the DVD. However, when I received it, I read the small print on the back of the case, only to realise that this was in Swedish with English subtitles. (Of course it was in fucking Swedish. It was made in Sweden. It was based on a Swedish book. That was set in Sweden. Why the fuck would it be in English? Why is it such a terrible idea that people in a foreign land want to watch a film in their own language? We're lucky here in that we get to watch American films in our language. Every other country has to go and see all the blockbusters that we take for granted either dubbed or subtitled. If you don't like subtitled films then that's your problem. But do not come down here and give an excellent film one star because you're lazy and can't be arsed reading a few lines at the bottom of the screen. I hate you and all people like you. You are what is wrong with the world of cinema today. If you hate subtitles so much that you couldn't watch an excellent movie, then I'd pity you if I didn't despise you. I'm going to learn Swedish on the offchance that I meet you one day, so you have to read subtitles to converse with me. And then I'll hit you with a lead pipe.)
This was not in the description at all on Amazon, and I have now returnd the DVD and got a full refund. (Send your brain back, perhaps the replacement will be less fucking stupid.)
I'm sorry, but he made me very angry... 

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