The Girl Who Played With Fire
Adapted from Stieg Larssons swedish Novel and the sequel to The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, the Girl Who Played with Fire is a grim mystery delving deeper into the history of Lisbeth Salander, the “Girl” of the series.
The Girl who Played with Fire is set a year or so after the events of “Dragon Tattoo” and brings back Mikael Blomkvist and the team from the investigative magazine Millennium, who’ve just landed their next major story involving sex trafficking & some highly placed individuals in Swedish society. Unfortunately, its never easy trying to bust high society, and they’re hit by some untimely murders with Lisbeth being implicated. There on in its a race between Lisbeth, Mikael & the Cops to find who’s behind the murders before Lisbeth gets caught by either the cops or whoever is behind the hits.
Lisbeth as a main character is unconventional, she’s got various social issues and prefers to spend time isolated, however she’s also a completely brilliant hacker and manages to use that to her advantage in tracking her pursuers. She’s been messed around by everyone, leaving her untrusting of authority and people in general. The overall arc of the trilogy is a lot to do with Lisbeth figuring out who she is and finding peace. Lisbeth hasn’t had the best life, and we experience some the hate and violence she goes through. Be warned, as with the first film the movie matches the book in the sense that it doesn’t pull any punches. It openly deals with brutal issues in society, some may find this a little disturbing with a couple of intense rape & sex scenes included in the film.
As a pretty big fan of the books, I read all three in under a month, I was a little unimpressed with the overall adaption of this flick, the first movie also didn’t really live up to the source material. I wonder whether this is due to the nature of some of the characters, in the book Blomkvist is the anchor, he’s sympathetic and though his life’s not in order, the heart shines through. In the movie the character doesn’t seem as likable and comes across as a journalist selfishly chasing the story rather than caring for Lisbeth, although perhaps that says something about knowing whats going on in peoples heads vs what we see externally. If that was the intention perhaps it could have been explored more.
Although it wasn’t a popular opinion in a few conversations i had after the movie, I’m quite looking forward to the David Fincher adaptation of the Dragon Tattoo, I’ll be interested to see if the bigger budget and new writers can bring something more to this trilogy. I don’t feel like we’ve really matched the energy and depth that made the books so appealing. The Girl Who Played with Fire is worth a watch if you enjoyed the first Swedish film or are a big fan of the books. If not I’d wait to see what Fincher does with the series.
Reviewed by: Asher Bastion