Sunday, September 18, 2011

The Girl who Kicked the Hornets' Nest Review

The final chapter of the Dragon tattoo trilogy begins with Lisbeth and her father, hospialized after their bloody reunion. With her half brother, Neiderman, still on the loose and now a new threat emerges from a shadowy government agency intent on silencing Alexander Zalachenko and anyone associated with him...
While hospitalized Lisbeth befriends a young doctor who protects her privacy as long as possible while Mikael requests that his sister, Annika, defend Lisbeth in her upcoming murder trial of her former state appointed guardian Nils Bjurman.
While Annika visits Lisbeth in the hospital a member of the secret government agency goes to the hospital and assassinates Alexander Zalachenko but is unsuccessful at eliminating Lisbeth.
After Lisbeth recovers from her near fatal wounds in the hospital she is transferred to a prison to await her court date but before that she is able to get a message to Mikael that his sister can use the "home video" she shot in the first film while in Bjurmans apartment.
After the failed assasination attempt the members of the secret "section" devise a plan to silence Lisbeth by proving she is unfit to stand trial and needs to be re committed to St. Stephans, the same institution she was committed to as a child after attempting to burn her father alive.
While recovering in the hospital Lisbeth documents all the events in her life from her "happy" (read as miserable) childhood, her time in St Peters under the supervision of Dr, Teleborian, to her rape at the hands of  Nils Bjurman and sends it to Mikael who takes her story and plans a huge cover story of Lisbeth's life. Soon the team at Millenium begin receiving threat's via Email. The threat's escalate to attacks on their home in the form of vandalism and breaking and entering. Mikael is now pressured to delay the publication of the Lisbeth Salander story by fellow co workers, in a cafe Mikael meets Erika Berger Milleniums' chief editor to discuss her recent attack and the threats to her and the others when two hired hitmen enter the cafe and attempt to kill them.
Meanwhile Mikael's sister, Annika recieves Lisbeths's laptop and the copy of the rape video. Horrified by what she see's she finally understand's Lisbeth better and is determined to prove Lisbeth is not only mentally capable of standing trial but is also innocent of the crimes she is accused of.

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets Nest culminates in the court room where Dr. Teleborian tells the court the reasons Lisbeth Salander was institutionalized as a child and how she is delusional and made up the rape story. Teleborian's testimony is all part of the Sections plan to silence Salander and keep their secrets from being revealed.
Throughout the film every time Teleborian attempted to "evaluate" Lisbeth she remained silent, once the trial began though she dissected every question of Teleborian and detective Ekstrom brilliantly and methodically proving not only that she was mentally capable of standing trial but much more intelligent than the prosecution had ever realized. Watching this was so enjoyable, it was reminiscent to seeing the metamorphosis of the Ellen Ripley character in Alien and Aliens. In the first film Lisbeth is a victim that overcomes her adversary, in the second film she confronts her father but things don't go as planned which brings us to the final film where Lisbeth is forced to defend herself against another of her childhood nightmares and she proves to much more than her persona gives away. Watching Mikael's sister, Annika, also bait the prosecution into a false sense of victory then drop the bombshell piece of silicon evidence was so gratifying and then turning the table's by providing the judge with proof of over eight thousand pictures of child porn on Teleborian's laptop was just sweet justice that proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that Lisbeth was innocent.
Oh and what happens to Niederman???Well lets just say having congenital analgesia has it's negatives also....
Each of the three films in this trilogy are good on their own but as a trilogy they are fantastic and has one of the best character driven stories I've seen in a long long time!
I highly recommend watching these Dragon Tattoo films directed by Director Daniel Alfredson, I have a feeling they will stand up very well against the David Fincher versions coming later this year.
A-