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since 1997 | by maryann johanson

trailer break: ‘The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo’

Take a break from work: watch a trailer…


And then watch this one:

Same movie… but you might not guess it from these two trailers. The first one makes this look like it’s akin to a cozy British mystery you might find on PBS: sure, there’s sex and murder, but it hasn’t been glamorized and you certainly won’t find it titillating — they’re just two of the messy things life is full of.

The second trailer makes it look like a Hollywood thriller: Sex! Fast cars! Naked chicks! Airplanes! Females in peril! Motorcyles! Chicks on motorcycles! Woo-hoo!

The movie can’t be both. I suspect those who want to see the movie the second trailer promises will be disappointed.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo opens in the U.K. on March 10, in the U.S. on March 19; it played theatrically last spring in Canada, but is not yet available on DVD.



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movie buzz | trailers
  • Ide Cyan

    It’s been out on DVD in Québec for a while, and the 2nd movie in the series is still in theatres.

  • Der Bruno Stroszek

    That’s really weird. I know there have been a lot of foreign-language crime thrillers that have been substantial crossover successes in the UK these last few years (Tell No One, for example, or Anything for Her), and the second trailer is presumably gunning for the same kind of crowd, but why hide the fact that it’s not in English? The intended audience aren’t going to be put off by subtitles.

    How successful has Larsson’s novel been in America, by the way? In England the Millennium Trilogy books have all been bestsellers, which is presumably why the UK trailer makes so little effort to explain the plot.

  • well, the first one (Girl With the Dragon Tattoo) is 32 weeks on the paperback bestseller list, according to the NY Times; and The Girl Who Played With Fire is 16 weeks on the hardcover list. so, i would say they’re doing pretty well. i just finished Dragon Tattoo and am very curious to see what the film does with the complicated storyline… it’s true that there is action and adventure in the story, but there’s a lot of characterization and side plots and sidebars.

  • Ide Cyan

    They cut out a lot, streamlining the storylines from the books to fit the movies’ running time.

    They didn’t make the big rape scene any shorter, though.

  • The difference between the first ad and second is obvious: the first includes dialogue showing it’s a European/Scandanavian flick; the second without dialogue meaning… moviegoers might think it’s yet another thriller done in the English language.

    Despite the success of foreign-language films in America (Crouching Tiger comes to mind), Hollywood is still queasy when it comes to advertising a movie that is going to come with subtitles or noticeable overdubbing. A majority of American filmgoers don’t want the hassle of having their brains work while watching a movie. Hence, nearly every foreign-language film adverted in America will never use dialogue clips in the trailers, even when people can tell (such as Chinese/Asian films) that it’s not American-made.

    Subtitles are scary. The next Friday the 13th movie should be in Swedish. AAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!

  • Arthur

    I agree with bronxbee that the book has both aspects — the English cozy mystery (basically Blomkvist’s story) and the punk thriller (Lisbeth’s). Whether it does justice to both remains to be seen. I’d think that there’s enough interest in the books in the States to make this a possible hit, depending on how well it’s done.

  • Kenny

    “Subtitles are scary. The next Friday the 13th movie should be in Swedish. AAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!”

    I want that movie. Now.

  • Mel

    The movie can’t be both. I suspect those who want to see the movie the second trailer promises will be disappointed.

    Depends on how faithful it is to the book (which–and the second book even more so–is basically wall-to-wall about sexual assault, and often very graphic; there are many scenes I really would not want to see on film). It’s not in any way a cozy British murder mystery; if anything, I’d say Blomkvist’s part of the story is similar to the British State of Play miniseries. A lot of journalistic research and archive-crawling and source interviewing. But large chunks the rest of the book–and especially Lisbeth’s backstory–are incredibly violent and disturbing.

    The Swedish title of the first book is more like “Men Who Hate Women,” and every chapter is prefaced by real statistics about domestic violence, rape, human trafficking, and child abuse. I think Larsson had a Cause, and these books are about that cause.

    People expecting an action thriller may be disappointed; people expecting a cozy mystery are likely going to be a lot more disappointed.

  • I_Sell_Books

    How successful has Larsson’s novel been in America, by the way? In England the Millennium Trilogy books have all been bestsellers, which is presumably why the UK trailer makes so little effort to explain the plot.

    It’s selling extremely well. Book two was only just published in the US right before Christmas, and plenty of our customers have told us they’ve ordered the rest from the UK – heck, those who are bilingual have ordered it from non-English speaking countries just to finish the series. Even book groups are reading it, and they’re mostly women in their 50’s and 60’s and 70’s.

    Both myself and my boss heartily recommend it, and I can’t wait to read book two…as soon as my boss finds her reading copy, darnit…

  • I_Sell_Books

    If it’s a hit, I’m guessing there’ll be a Hollywood remake in the works, if not already – Matt Damon, you better not sign up, dammit.

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