Thursday, January 19, 2012

JenniferMy translation of the local newspaper's review of the recent movie "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo":
Despite a slight surrealistic feeling when the actors speak English while the surroundings and everything else is in Swedish, the American version of "Men who hate women" is really good. Rooney Mara and Daniel Craig have chemistry between them and Drottninggatan in Uppsala has an important role.
Right, let's take that last part first, the part that reads "...Drottninggatan in Uppsala plays an important role." As readers of this blog may remember (here's the relevant post), we who live in Uppsala, and especially those of us who travel by bus, were inconvenienced for more than a month last year by the filming of this movie. People I met on the bus were happy to grump about it a little, but also seemed secretly pleased of course. Who isn't pleased when one's beloved hometown gets some face time in a Big Hollywood production?

Except... Drottninggatan doesn't play Drottninggatan, and for that matter Uppsala doesn't play Uppsala. The three-block stretch of Drottninggatan that appears in the movie plays the entire small town in which a parade happened in the early 1960s. (Hence a little bit of extra time was needed to remove modern road markings, street signs, etc.) The existence of the street is important to the story, sure, but the events don't take place in Uppsala, and in fact these scenes could have been filmed almost anywhere (anywhere that the architecture was right, of course). To say therefore "Drottninggatan in Uppsala plays an important role" is perhaps a wee bit of an exaggeration... if not wishful thinking...

(Don't get me wrong, I fully intend to see the movie in the theater, and to cheer, only inwardly and silently of course, when Uppsala shows up!)

(And allow me one quick "I'm showing off my Swedish" note: on the movie poster above there's a tagline at the top: "What is hidden in the snow comes forth in the thaw." In Swedish it is an aphorism and sounds better because it's shorter and rhymes: "Det som göms i snö / Kommer upp i tö."

(Oh, and two further bits of amusement: Haven't or don't want to read the book? Check out the New Yorker's parody, "The Girl who Fixed the Umlaut," which focusses on the heroine's technical genius. Haven't or don't want to see the movie? I recommend "The Girl with the Tramp-stamp Tattoo," which imagines the heroine as a ditzy Valley Girl type rather than a punk-goth type.)

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