Stieg Larsson’s intriguing anti-heroine Lisbeth Salander is abducted by aliens, brainwashed, and later returned as a boring action heroine. Okay, I’m making that up. Except for the boring part.
This time she’s played by a miscast Claire Foy (The Crown), who, possibly taking acting tips from Steven Seagal, uses exactly one expression throughout (pissed off) and places a distant third to Noomi Rapace and Rooney Mara, the character’s previous cinematic occupants. There’s a dastardly, world-threatening plot to be foiled, a suitably handsome but hardly utilized Mikael Blomkvist (Sverrir Gudnason – Borg vs. McEnroe), and the usual string of car chases, explosions and well-telegraphed betrayals. Snore.
In the end, Fede Alvarez’s entry into the glum Dragon Tattoo franchise is a turgid, surprise-free, spy-action superhero movie. It’s a highly stylish one, to be sure, if that’s what you go to the movies for, but I’m pretty sure it was not the late Larsson’s (who did not write this story) intention for the fascinating, super-crafty uber-hacker to become a kick-ass Goth James Bond just to fill up multiplexes. (117 min)