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DVD Review: 'The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest'

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DVD Review: 'The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest'
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Satisfying Third Film in a Swedish Trilogy of Thrillers

If you've seen and liked the Swedish versions of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo and The Girl Who Played With Fire, you'll want to see The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest (2009), the final film in the Millennium Trilogy. It still stars Noomi Rapace and Michael Nyqvist, wraps up nearly all the loose ends of the story and remains generally faithful to Stieg Larsson's bestselling novels. However, it's not a standalone movie and assumes viewers are familiar with either the two earlier films in the trilogy or Larsson's books.

Be advised that Hornet's Nest is a long procedural that gets off to a slow start because the story's most fascinating character, Lisbeth Salander (Rapace), is cooped up — first in a hospital room, then in a jail cell — for the film's initial hour and a half. Meanwhile, journalist Mikael Blomqvist (Nyqvist) works to keep her from being incarcerated in an institution for the criminally insane, and he uncovers a conspiracy set in motion by a rogue group within the Swedish government. The pace of the movie finally picks up when Lisbeth, in full Goth-Punk regalia, is put on trial for attempted murder of her father. It all leads to a denouement involving an abandoned brickyard, a blond giant incapable of feeling physical pain, a heavy-duty nail gun and a motorcycle gang.

It's disappointing that Hornet's Nest is not exciting in the way that the first installment, Dragon Tattoo, was. However, the third film in the series is a reasonably good movie in its own right, and it does successfully bring the trilogy to a satisfying end.

Special Features

The DVD containing The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest supplies little in the way of extras, though it does provide the English-language theatrical trailer. Also, it allows viewers to watch the feature film in either the original Swedish with English subtitles or in dubbed English. The English spoken by the voice actors is not naturalistic, employing a stagy North American accent, while pronouncing the names of people and places (such as Gothenburg, the city where Lisbeth is hospitalized) in the Swedish fashion.

Release Date: January 25, 2011
Total Runtime: 2 hours 27 minutes
MPAA Rating: R for Strong Violence, Some Sexual Material and Brief Language

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