For me, Stieg Larsson's Millennium series had strikes against it from the beginning. Misogynistic crime mysteries aren't really my genre of choice and it seemed over-hyped. Plus, my "to-read" queue was long enough already.
But after pressure from family, friends and coworkers, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo lured me in, and I devoured the entire trilogy in less than a month.
Fincher has an eye for detail: From casting to location to the smallest aspects of wardrobe, I felt that the movie remains true to the book.
I was similarly skeptical about David Fincher's Hollywood adaptation of the first book, after hearing not-so-positive reviews about the Swedish film interpretation and rumors of a nearly Titanic-length (daunting for someone who can hardly sit still through a 30-minute episode of The Office).
On Tuesday night, the film won me over. It's suspenseful but never drawn-out, and I endured those 158 minutes with hardly a fidget. (Though that might have a little to do with the location —Alamo Drafthouse Mason Park — and the refreshments — Karbach Hopadillo IPA and a batch of freshly-baked chocolate chip cookies à la mode halfway through.)
Fincher has an eye for detail: From casting to location to the smallest aspects of wardrobe, I felt that the movie remains true to the book. The director captures the pervasive darkness of the tone and evil of the characters, leaving room for the occasional laugh. He presents the misogyny and the sexual torture without making it appear arousing, and though some scenes are uncomfortably lewd at times, enough is hidden and implied to keep it from going over the edge.
Rooney Mara plays a fierce, pierced and porcelain-skinned Lisbeth Salander, opposite Daniel Craig as Mikael Blomkvist, a rugged and recently-disgraced journalist. The team works for Henrik Vagner (played by Christopher Plummer) to discover the unsolved disappearance of his great-niece 36-years prior. They uncover much more along the way about a family of racists and misanthropes.
The film was shot and projected in Sony 4K, which means that every drop of rain and snow, every bruise and bead of sweat, every bump on a leather sofa and every glimmer of Salander's nipple rings — everything — is clear and clearly visible. (Alamo Drafthouse became equipped with 4K projectors earlier this month, and there are a handful of other cinemas with 4K capabilities in the Houston area. Find them here.)
Tell us: What did you think of the movie? Do you plan to see it for yourself?