I didn’t like the movie. It’s hard to watch. But I also really loved the movie–it deals with the hard stuff well.
I can’t recommend it to most people–it has multiple rape scenes (both male and female) that are integral to the plot, shown and heard several times. Like I said . . . hard to watch.The original Swedish title Män som hatar kvinnor – “Men Who Hate Women” — is aptly named. The story is about Lisbeth Salander’s abuse and justice regarding men who hate women (rapists).
I haven’t read the books, I’ve seen the foreign films, beautifully filmed in a beautiful language. I’m peeved that Hollywood tried its hand at the story. Because The Girl With A Dragon Tattoo, the whole Millennium Series, is a phenomenal story, very well-told, and if I ever meet Mr. Stiegg I shall kiss his in hand in respect.
It’s a bloody good mystery–completely engrossing and confusing until the last scene. But the story was much deeper. It was about abuse, and what it did to one girl. And what she did about it.
Lisbeth Salander. She’s like the Elizabeth Bennet of our time. I feel for her, I respect her, I like her. She’s extremely anti-social, introverted, independent, confident, wary, bi-sexual, beautiful, hostile, fair, and borderline autistic. Mr. Stiegg said he based the character of Lisbeth Salander on what he imagined Pippi Longstocking would have been like as an adult. Which is all kinds of awesome.
I learned from the story. It ate at me for a whole week, always in my thoughts. Here are some of them:
Lesson #1: Just because someone smells like beer, dresses goth, and doesn’t look you in the eye doesn’t mean they’re trouble.
One of the first scenes shows a bunch of punks bully Lisbeth, just because she looks black and dark and troubled. They pour beer on her and smash her backpack to the ground. Her laptop is destroyed. Her laptop is her life. She goes to her friend, who can fix the computer, and he makes a comment about how she reeks of beer. When really, she’d never drunk a drop.
Just because someone smells of beer doesn’t mean you know the whole story. Reminds me of my post about the little trash girl that I saw.
Lesson #2: It takes patience to be friends with Lisbeth.
Mikael was trustworthy and kind and would do anything for Lisbeth–but that didn’t matter. First, she had to believe he could be good. And she had to start seeing that some men don’t hate women.
She couldn’t trust him, even though he was a trustworthy person.
He could take her out to coffee, smile, give her flowers, share a personal story about his childhood, and talk about feelings of loneliness, and still … her heart would not melt like what happens to most girls in most romance movies.
This is no romance.
But, maybe if he does that for her many years in a row, and never breaks her trust . . . then she’ll allow herself to connect.
So, if I ever want to be friends with someone like Lisbeth Salander (which would rock), I’ll have to be patient.
#3: Sex doesn’t mean emotional connection.
I’m of the old fashioned belief that sex actually makes an emotional connection.
However, if sex has been used against you … it’s broken. No more sexual connection.
So when Lisbeth has sex, it’s perhaps trying to make some connection, but it certainly doesn’t create an emotional connection.
So don’t break sex. Or it won’t work right.
#4: There really is no privacy.
Lisbeth can hack into my bank account faster than I can punch in the PIN. She could have my work history before I can type LPN. And she could have my address before I can write my area code. Seriously. She’s that good.
It almost makes me want to change my password that was labeled “weak” by Google.
#5: Families want closure.
One of the most rewarding parts of the story was when finally, the missing girl’s family was told what happened. Finally. Closure. Whether it be the 5 stages of grief, opening your heart up to new loves, or seeing justice for what happened … when a horrible situation is closed so you can finally explain the problem/how it happened–it’s good.
#6: Take the side of the weak.
Jesus did. If there’s ever a tiny kick-boxing girl with spiked hair, black lipstick, covered in studs, who says that a fine, upstanding social worker raped her . . . take the side of the weaker one. Listen to the story of rape–though it will hurt to hear–and make you uncomfortable. It’s not about you.
I know some girls will lie about rape. But methinks it’s not often. It’s much more common to lie that you weren’t raped, to keep it inside. People just don’t want to hear about a fine upstanding man raping a dirty punk whore … best to take the rich man’s side … best to not listen to the pleading in her eyes or the slight tremble in her lip.
Listen to the weak, the hurt, the abused, and the raped tell their stories. Even though it’s uncomfortable.
That’s what I learned.
What did you think about The Millennium Series?