I am sure among Swedes and film buffs, there was outrage when it was announced that Hollywood was remaking The Girl with The Dragon Tattoo. The Swedish version was very well reviewed and performed well in its limited release in US theatres. Noomi Rapace’s portrayal of the title character was so good, it put her on the map, and she will now been seen in the latest installment of the Sherlock Holmes movies. However, with the extreme worldwide success of Stieg Larsson’s Millennium trilogy, an American remake of the movie was inevitable. Considering this, I think we should be glad that David Fincher was tapped to direct this version.
David Fincher’s first movie as a feature length director was Alien 3, which was a borderline disaster, but his breakout performance was his next movie Se7en. Every scene jumps off the screen. And the suspense builds throughout the movie as Detective Mills (Brad Pitt) and Detective Somerset (Morgan Freeman) discover each new crime scene, rake over the clues, and get closer the finding the killer. As they discover each new body, the unnamed city they are in is constantly rainy, dark, and depressing (this style is blatantly copied in the recently released American version of The Killing). As usual, Fincher gets the most out of his cast, which included Brad Pitt, Morgan Freeman, and Gwyneth Paltrow. The actor who played the killer, one of Hollywood’s best, was not billed in the movie posters, and did no promotion for the movie so that it would be a surprise to the audience, at least to those who saw it opening weekend. I will continue this tradition and encourage those of you who have not seen it, not to look it up, but instead to watch the movie to find out.
Of any American movie, I think Se7en deserves honorary status in the “Deckare” genre (“deckare” is the Swedish word for crime fiction). So I also think if anyone can pull off an American version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, it is David Fincher. He was robbed of an Oscar for The Social Network, so I think he was extremely motivated to go back to the crime genre and create a movie that will amaze.
I also encourage “Deckare” fans to check out Zodiac—it is not quite as good as Se7en, but it is another good Fincher crime movie about a serial killer.
Fincher is also teaming up again with the Oscar winning composer Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails. While The Social Network was Reznor’s first official movie score, he actually remixed his hit Closer for the classic and creepy opening sequence which sets the stage for Se7en. So I will wait to judge the Dragon Tattoo remake until after I have seen it in the theaters, but I am confident it is in good hands.