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  Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest, The The Truth Will Out
Year: 2009
Director: Daniel Alfredson
Stars: Michael Nyqvist, Noomi Rapace, Lena Endre, Annika Hallin, Jacob Ericksson, Sofia Ledarp, Anders Ahlbom, Micke Spreitz, Georgi Staykov, Mirja Turestedt, Niklas Falk, Hans Alfredson, Lennart Hjulström, Jan Holmquist, Niklas Hjulström, Johan Kylén
Genre: Drama, ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Lisbeth Salander (Noomi Rapace) has been airlifted to hospital with serious gunshot wounds after a confrontation in a remote countryside location between her, her father and her brother, both of whom she had not seen in years. They were part of a secret society of spies and Lisbeth had been uncovering their activities, yet now they wished to put a stop to it and were far more powerful than she, but the young woman had managed to plant an axe into her father's head while her brother had escaped. Now she is charged with attempted murder, and the society has tentacles everywhere...

This was the final film in the Swedish adaptations of the Stieg Larsson Millennium Trilogy, all of which had done very well across the world, though would be eclipsed by the Hollywood remakes by and by. For the fans, this was a chance to see Swedes create their own versions of books which were so identified with the country, although exactly how flattering that was is open to question: certainly Lisbeth represented great resourcefulness and courage, but the implication that the nation was under too much influence of the corrupt powers that be was not reassuring for those who saw Sweden as one of the best places to live on the globe.

Of all the three, this was not the one to start with as understanding what the hell was going on was very much dependent on knowing the backstory which you could pick up, but more likely would mean very little to you otherwise. Lisbeth spends most of the first half of the movie in hospital recuperating from a bullet taken out of her brain and others elsewhere, plus refusing to speak to the authorities since she believes the deck is stacked against her should she try to tell her side of the story. The other side is that she is legally insane, and has been from childhood when she set fire to her father and was subsequently locked up in an institution.

What she knows, and what we're entirely backing her about, is that Lisbeth is not insane at all, and has been victimised for years by those who were supposed to be looking after her, and all because she was an awkward witness to their evil machinations. But how can she prove this? That's what much of this is about, and co-star Michael Nyqvist as the crusading journalist Mikael tends to be sidelined in this one, emerging to provide support to Lisbeth's case and be menaced by those dark forces for a spot of paranoia - always helpful for raising the stakes in a thriller. But the fact remains that for the most part this is so self-involved that it loses its momentum.

Not so once Lisbeth gets to court, and things step up a gear as the film actually turns quite tense, mainly because the psychiatrist who condemned her before is threatening to do so again. Luckily there is a piece of evidence that she can introduce at the last minute, so maybe this is more predictable than they might have hoped if you had been following the plot closely, but seeing her attain justice and put all those who persecuted her in their place as the truth is revealed is undeniably satisfying. Meanwhile, the brother is at large, bumping off random people as he finds a place to stay and gather his thoughts, which results in a last act suspense sequence just so you didn't think the whole affair was a little dry. Which it is, but if you had stuck with the films this far, you would be interested to see how they resolved themselves and as far as that went The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest was not a bad way to go out - eventually. Music by Jacob Groth.

Aka: Luftslottet som sprängdes
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

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