OK, I’m in. Sure, I have my reservations. Sure, I loved the original. Sure, I really, really loved Noomi Rapace. But I am in for the new American remake. Is it necessary? Probably not. Reading subtitled is not that hard. Still the new trailer has made me hopeful. This thing could be good. This thing could be quite good. But, you know, don’t take my word for it. Judge for yourself.
So first things first, Rooney Mara is no Noomi Rapace. Clearly. But, Rooney could still be a fairly kick-ass Lisbeth Salander. Different, yes. But perhaps somewhat more like what author Stieg Larsson envisioned in his original description of her as a grown-up Pippi Longstocking who is “a pale, anorexic young woman who had hair as short as a fuse, and a pierced nose and eyebrows…On those occasions when she had been wearing a tank top, a dragon tattoo can be seen on her left shoulder blade.”
Also David Fincher is undeniably a talented director and his taut, stylish camera work is already evident in the trailer. I mean, if he can make a bunch of nerds staring at computer screens seem suspenseful then think what he can do with a genuinely suspenseful story like this. It’s almost…frightening.
Though one of my continued concerns is that this movie looks a little like the Mikael Blomkvist story instead of the Lisbeth Salander show. Some of this is due to the casting. Daniel Craig is James Bond, and Rooney Mara is that girl who dumped the guy who invented Facebook. So while Craig is the marquee name, hopefully Rooney will still be the main attraction when all things are said and done.
Though one of the things I’m obviously happy to see is that Lisbeth’s bisexuality is still intact. Though, there was never much doubt that would make it into the new film. (SPOILER ALERT: Skip the rest of this paragraph if you haven’t read the book or seen the film.) What I like about the trailer is that while Lisbeth’s relationship with Miriam is revealed, her relationship with Blomkvist is barely hinted at. Part of that is probably because it’s the natural progression with the story and a pretty big thing to give away in a preview. But it’s also somewhat encouraging because the easiest thing marketers can do to make a female character who has an eye for the ladies more appealing to male viewers is to show she also has an eye for the fellas.
Though, the poster more than makes up for the trailer’s restraint. And it also points to more of my Blomkvist Show v. Salander Show worries. She is naked, he is clothed. She looks small, he looks imposing. Even the way he is holding her is equal parts dominating and protective. Lisbeth Salander doesn’t need a protector – even if he is 007.
But the poster is the poster, the film is the film. And I think for all my love of the original, I’m still going to give this American version a chance. And if it also turns out to be good, well then there will be two movies about a fierce, ferociously independent heroine that are worth watching. And that’s not a bad thing, not a bad thing at all.