Photo of Girl with the Dragon Tattoo book cover

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Versions Review: Swedish vs American; Books vs Movies


I just received the American version of “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” DVD movie for my birthday. I have read the books and have seen the three Swedish versions of the film on Netflix.  It has been interesting to see the development of this series in all three versions.

The books:  Tough to read as from what I understand Steig Larsson died shortly after turning the manuscripts in.  The manuscripts were left as is, unedited, and therefore not fluid in the storytelling. HOWEVER, if you can get past the first few chapters and enjoy the story as a whole it makes for a great read. You will cheer for Lisbeth’s character.

Photo of Girl with the Dragon Tattoo book cover

The Swedish movie version: Absolutely loved Noomi Rapace‘s version of Lisbeth.  That’s how I pictured her to be. As for the story itself they glazed over the relationship between Mikhail and the co-editor, and one of my favorite parts of the book, Lisbeth in the Cayman.  I was looking forward to seeing how that would look on film and was disappointed that it was not shown at all. Nor do I recall seeing the end where she sees Mikhail and the co-editor get together for Christmas.  ( I did not bother to check to the movies before writing this.  Just writing this from what memory I have).  The rest of the film was pretty true to the book and I didn’t mind the subtitles either.

Photo of Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Swedish movie poster

The American movie version: Rooney Mara‘s Lisbeth was ok.  I would have preferred if Noomi played Lisbeth again with Daniel Craig.  That would have been great to see.  What I did like was that they did incorporate everything that I was missing from the Swedish films. Not that that I really cared about the relationship between Mikhail and his co-editor, but the scenes of Lisbeth in the Cayman was how I imagined it. There was not much dialogue, just watching her go through the motions of moving the money was fantastic.

Photo of the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo US movie poster

Whichever media of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo you liked better, the rape scenes were all too disturbing in any form, but you cheer when Lisbeth shows up to exact revenge!

There is no one good way to choose which was better, Swedish vs American or books vs movies. They are all good in their forms and in the way the story was told.

E-rating (1=Meh, 5=Eenae Endorsed): Books and movies EEEEE

More concise reviews can be found in a quick Google search.

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