Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Kindle Movies

I blame Amazon -- I'm 2/3 of the way through Stieg Larsson's Milennium trilogy as of 0700 this morning. I started watching The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo on the big screen but finished flat on my back in bed, with the Kindle suspended at eyeglasses-less viewing distance.

If you've got Amazon Prime, the Swedish films are free. I watch 'em with subtitles; IMO, dubbing tends lose the nuances of dialog -- also, there are some nuts and bolts of language for which the sounds -- but not the spelling -- are nearly identical in English and Swedish*

The first film has a delightfully complex plot. It is mercilessly intense; I found it a little hard to take but Lisbeth Salander's efforts to balance the scales do make up for that. The second's got a bit of Kill Bill but adequately keeps the yarn going. (When I remarked to my Mom that I'd seen the first film but doubted I could read the book because some scenes might be too much to take, she'd already read it. She has always had a taste for well-crafted spy/mystery novels.)

Noomi Rapace does a remarkable job with the character of Lisbeth. --Not that I would have any reason to like a character with strong tech-y and poor social skills based in part on "what a grown-up Pippi Longstocking might be like."

It is interesting to note that Larsson, in real life quite like series hero Mikael Bloomkvist, a muckraking Socialist journalist, sympathetically portrays a thoroughly rational-anarchist, possibly libertarian protagonist in Lisbeth Salander, who fights for personal justice with little regard for other people's rules.

I don't know about the Hollywood movie; the originals are a cut above the usual cinematic offering.

Update: finished the third one as an after-dinner treat. Day-um! Hollywood's gonna hafta punch way above their weight to beat that.
* I have encountered this before -- the U.S. importer of Powerbox AB's line of electronic enclosures didn't translate the assembly instructions, telling purchasers to look at the drawing and "read the instructions out loud. It'll make sense." Which it did, at least enough to fill in what the pictures omitted.


Anonymous said...

I much prefer the Swedish version of "Girl". The US film, while by no means bad, simply - somehow - lacks the punch of the original. I found it oddly tedious.

BTW, if you at all enjoyed Nyqvist's performance, may I suggest "As It Is In Heaven", which is (or, at least, has been) available for free on Netflix?

Kevin said...

I've seen the original film trilogy, and concur on the "subtitles vs. dubbing." I have not yet seen the Hollywood remake, largely because I don't see how anyone could beat Ms. Rapace's performance, or even match it.

I have seen, however, reviews that claim the books that this trilogy are based on just weren't that good. The consensus was "great idea, bad execution." I'm interested that your mother has read them and considers them well-crafted.

Roberta X said...

She has read the first one. I was extrapolating from what I know of her tastes.

Chuck Pergiel said...

"--Not that I would have any reason..." Ha! You're very funny!

Frank W. James said...

I much prefer the Swedish originals (even with subtitles) to the Hollywood version. The Daniel Craig version isn't bad, but Naomi Rapace just nailed her role so thoroughly.

An extremely good story and very well done on film, don't know about the books as I never got around to reading them, but I've watched the Swedish originals twice now...

All The Best,
Frank W. James