Holiday Letter Two: Movie Review

Dear Girl With the Dragon Tattoo,

Your new movie is, like you, slick and graphic.  I had to look away during the most brutal scenes. Again like you, your movie is intriguing, compelling and layered.  It raises questions that it unapologetically doesn’t answer, while taking 158 minutes not to answer them.  It challenges truths that are accepted as givens, while relying on traditional motifs to affect the challenge.  It exists as part of a mainstream pop culture phenomenon, while exploring the lives of characters that live well beyond the margins of mainstream.

Yet again like you, your new movie is fundamentally shaped by the impact and implications of human relationships – the meaning and function of family, the limits of traditional roles, the ties of loyalty and love, and the scope of dysfunction – and driven by clashing and coinciding concepts of justice – what it means, who deserves it, how it is administered and by whom. Given these themes, I suppose it is fitting that the movie – and the books upon which it is based – have stirred heated debates about relationships and justice amongst commentators and amongst the families close to Steig Larsson, the mind behind your creation.

While I haven’t fully deciphered your personal code of morals or justice, Lisbeth Salander, I fully support your message and motivation: violence against women is intolerable. Period.

Kate

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