Title – The Girl in the Spider’s Web (2018)
Director – Fede Alvarez (Don’t Breathe)
Cast – Claire Foy, Sverrir Gudnason, LaKeith Stanfield, Stephen Merchant, Sylvia Hoeks
Plot – Swedish computer hacker Lisbeth Salander (Foy) must track down a dangerous group of terrorists who want to gain access to a collection of nuclear launch codes that have been unearthed.
“Are you not Lisbeth Salander, the righter of wrongs? The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo?”
Review by Eddie on 05/03/2019
It didn’t set the world on fire or break new ground, but 2011’s The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo was an above average thriller that was elevated by the great David Fincher and a star making turn from Rooney Mara, giving us all hope that we had a new trilogy to enjoy in the form of Stieg Larsson’s Millennium novels, that focused on vigilante hacker Lisbeth Salander and her quest for out of the ordinary justice.
Seven year’s is a long time in cinematic terms however and come 2018 a lot had changed for the dire The Girl in the Spider’s Web.
Gone is David Fincher, replaced with up and coming director Fede Alvarez whose previous films The Evil Dead and Don’t Breathe are much better than this offering and gone is the previous cast members of 2011’s outing, here replaced by Claire Foy as Salander and Sverrir Gudnason as Daniel Craig’s previous reporter and love interest Mikael Blomkvist.
Also replaced is any of the previous films logic and believability, that was always stretched quite far (ditto with the novels on which it was based), that’s here replaced with a seriously unbelievable script, a wasting of Salander’s layered complexities and a general sense of a film doing a by the numbers rendition rather than bringing anything new to the table of vigilante/investigative thrillers.
Set year’s after the events of Dragon Tattoo, Spider’s Web focuses on Salander and her quest to stop a dangerous file of nuclear launch codes from getting into the hands of nefarious evildoers, that just so happens to include such delights as Salander escaping a neighbourhood shattering explosion by jumping into a bath tub, a motorcycle getaway across a frozen lake, a quick recovery from numbing drugs thanks to some household pills and most surprisingly an I.T guru’s sudden skill as a sharpshooter.
It’s all extremely silly, often offensively so and while much of this is likely to be because Larson’s series has gone to a new author in the wake of his untimely death, it’s no excuse for Alvarez and his team when the results are this dire.
Foy gives it her best shot in her highest profile cinematic lead yet, but Salander has become a non-event in her own story (even worse is Gudnason pointless incarnation of Blomkvist) and no other character in this tale is worth mentioning, although Salander’s “surprising” close connection to the group that want this launch codes is quite hilarious in its randomness and unlikelihood.
Final Say –
It’s filmed with a Hollywood sheen and designed to be a hacker Jason Bourne with a female twist but The Girl in the Spider’s Web is more like a loud death knell of a franchise that at one stage seemed wholly appealing. A pointless and lifeless film, it’s odd that anyone even bothered.
1 cattle prod out of 5