The Girl Who Played With Fire Movie Review

The second part of Stieg Larsson's Millennium trilogy details another spiralling mystery, but this time it's even more personal for the protagonists.

Which makes it more subtly involving for us as well, even though it's the middle chapter.

It's a year later, and journalist Mikael (Nyqvist) has lost touch with young hacker Lisbeth (Rapace). Suddenly she's in the news as the suspect in a double murder that's connected to his work as an editor at Millennium magazine. As the cops look for her, Mikael tries to get to the bottom of the story. But a ruthless, gigantic goon (Spreitz) is also after her, and he's working for the elusive Russian mobster Zala (Staykov) who seems to be behind everything that's happening.

Alfredson (brother of Tomas) directs with a slick, sure hand, quietly insinuating all kinds of things as the story widens and then contracts suddenly into an intense final act. In many ways it's like an extended episode of a police procedural series, as various characters approach a central mystery from different directions. And the plot is a little over-constructed in the way it draws everything together into a single confrontation. This requires a few threads to be lost along the way as well as a couple of brief contrivances.

But what makes the film gripping is the way it closes in so tightly around the two central characters, and since they're apart for most of the film Nyqvist and Rapace get the chance to develop them a little deeper. Intriguingly, even though they're physically separated, they are actually working together all the way through the story, and even without sharing scenes they have palpable chemistry.

Along the way there are a few detours (a random car chase, a gratuitous sex scene, a vicious fist fight), but the film builds a relentlessly suspenseful tone through a series of freaky scenarios and unpredictable encounters. And the taut pacing makes sure that our interest deepens as the events encompass big issues like human trafficking while also focussing intimately on Lisbeth and Mikael's own lives. And the abrupt ending leaves us wondering where Part 3 will go from here.

Cast & Crew

Director : Daniel Alfredson

Producer : Soren Staermose

Starring : , , , Mikael Spreitz, , Georgi Staykov, Yasmine Garbi, Paolo Roberto


The Girl Who Played With Fire Rating

" Excellent "

Rating: 15, 2009


More Noomi Rapace

A Week In Movies: Hollywood Legends Hit London, As Do A Trio Of Big Premieres, While New Trailers Promise Tears, Laughs, Thrills And Chills

Tom Cruise, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Hugh Jackman and Emma Thompson were all on hand for Sunday night's Empire Awards in London, a lively and colourful event...

James Gandolfini's Final Movie 'The Drop', With Tom Hardy [Trailer + Pictures]

The trailer for The Drop - James Gandolfini's final movie before his untimely death last year - has rolled out online. Co-starring Tom Hardy and...

The Drop Trailer

Bob Saginowski works behind the bar at Cousin Marv's in Brooklyn - an establishment often referred to by local criminals as a 'drop bar'. It's...

Prometheus 2 Gets Release Date, Will Be Heavy on Michael Fassbender

Prometheus 2 will hit cinemas in March 2016 though may take on a different movie title, according to The Wrap. An insider confirmed that production...


'Passion' Reviews: Brian De Palma, Is That Really You?

Brian De Palma, a man once considered the finest director on the planet having helmed The Untouchables and Scarface, returns this week with Passion -...

A Week In Movies: Pacific Rim Launches, The Wolverine Shows Himself And Gwyneth Deals With Sex-Addiction

This week's big world premiere was for Guillermo Del Toro's Pacific Rim, which was held in Mexico City on Monday with cast members Charlie Day,...

Passion Trailer - Noomi Rapace and Rachel McAdams [Trailer]

Passion is set for its U.S release, and in light of that, a new trailer has been released, showing the thrilling battle between Noomi...

Passion Trailer

Christine is a manipulative and unpredictable chief of an advertising company. When she reins in a new assistant, Isabelle, they quickly become embroiled in a...