Niels Arden Oplev, the director of the 2009 version of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo has stated that it is rather mundane and redundant to remake a film that has been recently done. Cinematic Impact is not sure that Oplev has actually seen the American version, but it is understandable that a revisiting of a movie that was only distributed 2 years prior would seem incredibly uninspired. Many film critics and general audiences have mutual feelings about remakes in general, no matter how long ago the original film was released. Steig Larsson’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo may not have the stylized action of a big-budgeted summer release, but it was in dire need of the $100 million dollar budget courtesy of Columbia Pictures. David Fincher was able to use grander set-pieces, craftier tracking shots, and detailed dramatic sequences that were just not possible in the good but sometimes painfully slow Swedish version. Hopefully Fincher and crew will return for The Girl Who Played With Fire, which is the current subject at hand.
Mild Spoilers Ahead
In the novel version of The Girl Who Played With Fire, Lisbeth Salander is found to be on a vacation/hideout in the Caribbean just like in the 2010 film version. However many details of this portion of the story were left out of the film. For starters the Lisbeth Salander is still bitter at Blomkvist for remaining with Erika Berger, and is jealous and spiteful. Blomkvist has sincerely tried to remain in contact with Salander but his attempts have been futile. During her stay in the Caribbean Salander has been studying a fictional advanced mathematics book published by Harvard University. Her analysis of a particular theorem in the book gives the reader further insight into her already rich and complex intellect. Later she meets an African American character named George, with whom she develops a brief but steamy sexual relationship. This seemingly routine character development gives insight into how Lisbeth sees the world. She is no respecter of persons, and sees past stereotypes despite being from a country where Neo-Nazism is still very prevalent. Once a storm hits the island, Lisbeth manages to ensure that George is okay, while “disposing” of a particular abusive husband that she notices during her stay.
David Fincher will be able to apply the same disturbing atmosphere that was present in Se7en and Zodiac in The Girl Who Played With Fire, if he and the studio plan to collaborate again. The story does not have the sense of discovery like the previous novel, but two menacing characters make an appearance, and leave a blood trail that simultaneously frames Salander and brings her closer to her death. Blomkvist is in equal turmoil, while concurrently trying to find the location of Salander and coping with the violent loss of two colleagues. Rooney Mara and Daniel Craig will not be on autopilot for these roles, for their character’s chemistry is still prevalent, while also being isolated and dealing with their own mental demons.
Sony Pictures (with its subsidiary Columbia Pictures) will most likely not have the revenue of the newly started Sherlock Holmes franchise, but they do have a profitable and competent potential franchise on their hands. Here’s to hoping that Steve Zaillian will return to pen the script. And if he does not, his replacement does not need to be stingy with the details, or it will indeed be a case of revisiting the superfluous. And if director David Fincher is not returning, Sony Pictures executives Amy Pascal and Michael Lynton need to knock on the doors of Duncan Jones(Moon,Source Code) and Darren Aronosfky(Black Swan) for starters.