Lisbeth is recovering in a hospital and awaiting trial for three murders when she is released. Mikael must prove her innocence, but Lisbeth must be willing to share the details of her sordid experiences with the court.
Mikael Blomkvist, publisher of Millennium magazine, has made his living exposing the crooked and corrupt practices of establishment Swedish figures. So when a young journalist approaches him with a meticulously researched thesis about sex trafficking in Sweden and those in high office who abuse underage girls, Blomkvist immediately throws himself into the investigation. Written by
Before the start of the GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE, we were introduced in the cinema (Cineworld, Haymarket) to the films Director DANIEL ALFREDSON - who was kind enough to give us a talk on the background to the film which is the second film based on the late Steig Larsson's "Millennium" trilogy of books (the first being THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO, and the third being THE GIRL WHO KICKED THE HORNET'S NEST).
The director explained how the three films were made back-to-back over a year, and how it was he himself that directed the final two films which are effectively the same mega-story split over two films. He also told us of how it was working with the main actors and especially Noomi Rapace and how she had learnt kick-boxing, self defence and motorbike riding all to get in shape for the film.
The director also mentioned a bit about the late author Steig Larsson and his life, and the background to the Millennium trilogy of books. The talk set the mood up very nicely as an intro to the film ... and was much appreciated by the audience ...
The GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE starts with a flashback sequence to the first movie THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO, and the story then resumes, when Lisbeth Salander (NOOMI RAPACE) has just returned to Sweden after a year in exile.
Meanwhile, Mikael Blomkvist (MICHAEL NYQVIST), the publisher of Millennium magazine, has made his living exposing the crooked and corrupt practise's of establishment Swedish figures. Mikael's initial impetus to investigate one of the biggest breaking stories of sex trafficking trade in Sweden amongst those in high office is soon taking second place, when here hears of the accusations of Lisbeth being accused of murder and he then embarks on a mission to clear her name.
Mikael and Lisbeth are effectively after the same goal, but they are coming at the solution from two different directions, Mikael through dogged determination and legwork, and Lisbeth a very talented computer hacker, coming from a more "involved" viewpoint in a savage world where rules and boundaries don't apply.
The more the intriguing story unfolds, the more you find out the secrets from Lisbeth's past it's like unpeeling an onion only to find more and more hidden underneath each additional layer building her into one of the most fascinating, multi-dimensional lead female characters for many years a role brilliantly played by Noomi Rapace.
The direction (DANIEL ALFREDSON) and narrative work really well and it is a strong cast throughout. The camera-work and music also add to the build up of tension, and the Swedish country side is a terrific backdrop. It is good to know that the same director is also responsible for part three of the trilogy so we know it will be in good capable hands.
Credit should also be given to the other actors especially Micke Spreitz as Ronald Niedermann about as nasty a film goon as you are going to come across, Peter Andersson as Lisbeth's twisted evil guardian Nils Bjurman, and Georgi Staykov as the mysterious "Zala".
If you liked The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (and many did), then you'll be sure to like The Girl Who Played With Fire. It's not necessary, but it would certainly help to have seen the first film previously as you will get a more rounded view of the trilogy. The "Millennium" series of films is sure to build up a cult fan base, and I can't wait for the third and final installment! The Girl Who Played With Fire is a 15 (UK) certificate note though, that it does contain some scenes of graphic violence, is in Swedish with English subtitles and is 129 Min's long. It will be on general release from Friday 27th August 2010
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