Posts Tagged ‘Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’

Trailer of Miss Representation

by Jennifer Epps

The summer’s mortifying advance poster for David Fincher’s remake of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo crossed my path a few months back after I had just seen the limited-release documentary Miss Representation.

Fresh from Jennifer Siebel Newsom’s harrowing exposé of an insidious undeclared war on women in U.S. mainstream media, there was no way not to be deeply disturbed by the sight of Rooney Mara as the world-famous detective Lisbeth Salander — the formidable, fierce, headstrong genius at the heart of a trilogy of Swedish crime novels — attired essentially only in body piercings, with an older man’s arm firmly wrapped around her chest. The fact that he’s Daniel Craig and her co-star didn’t resolve whether his glowering embrace was menacing or protective, but one thing was clear: what’s on display was not the tattooed lady’s remarkable mind. This image has little to do with an expert computer hacker whose photographic memory and lightning-quick insights are matched only by her self-sufficiency and gutsiness.

The supreme irony is that the late novelist Stieg Larsson went to great lengths to fashion a complex, idiosyncratic, and ferocious heroine in Lisbeth Salander (within the limits of the commercial thriller genre), and to craft plots that indict the abuse of women. He saw a feminist mission as the chief among his left-wing causes in writing this series of mysteries. But the early publicity for the Hollywood Girl with the Dragon Tattoo automatically dragged out the same old sexual objectification of women (and then some). It could be the promo for virtually any tale of a damsel in distress.