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The Girl Who Played With Fire gets burned 

A muddled script fails to clarify the second film in the series.

The second film based on the late Stieg Larsson’s internationally successful thriller series makes the first film’s sensational, expansive unwieldy plot seem positively concise. Here, Lisbeth Salander’s (Noomi Rapace) vicious family history come to the fore and gets intertwined with the murder of a young journalist ready to break the story of sex-trafficking in Sweden. The themes of the series---how power corrupts; how systems are in place that condones and covers-up predatory behaviour---are muddled in a script that fails to clarify the connections between the murder-mystery plot and Salander’s quest for personal justice. If there is a motif that speaks to both the source material and the Swedish film adaptations it is ambition. Sometimes it is fulfilled, sometimes not.


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Vol 24, No 21
October 20, 2016

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