It’s been 7 years since David Fincher first introduced the wider world to the psychological crime thriller, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Originally a book series originating from Swedish writer Stieg Larsson, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo has since exploded into cult status as the world becomes infatuated with the deeds of the cold and calculating heroine, Lisbeth Salander.
The Girl in the Spider’s Web acts as both a reboot and continuation of the original hit. As with most cult follow ups it hits a lot of marks while missing others. The first thing that needs to be stated is that The Girl in the Spider’s Web is a good film. It has enough interesting plot, character development, creative shots and designs to make it an entertaining entry into the crime thriller genre. If that were the only stick we were measuring from then this would definitely get a thumbs up.
However, that is not what we are dealing with here. As a follow up to the 2011 neo-noir film we do have to make a few other considerations. First of all, if you are a fan of the series and David Fincher’s original vision then maybe this one isn’t for you. Fincher’s original film was an attempt to put every part of story, emotion and tension into one film without the thought of how you would follow it up. Even with Fincher returning as a producer for The Girl in the Spider’s Web, this film still has very different goals to the original.
There is a definite sense that Lisbeth Salander is entering franchise territory. Some amount of energy is held back, and threads are left to build into a larger universe. Everything about this film is satisfying but you still feel a sense that not every effort has been laid on the table. Saving some for a future instalment, it feels like a franchise film.
This is in no way a bad thing. Fans of the series already received the film they always wanted in 2011. I welcome the new direction even if it may be slightly more formulaic. If The Girl in the Spider’s Web sees significant success I do see a bright future for this franchise, like James Bond.
Whether or not you’re a fan of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo I still believe this is a worthwhile watch. At the very least you will get a good film, whether it meets a fans expectation may be another thing, but I don’t think that’s the point.
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