REVIEW: JOHN WICK

Starring

Keanu Reeves (47 Ronin)
Michael Nyqvist (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo)
Alfie Allen (Game of Thrones)
Adrianne Palicki (The Orville)
Bridget Moynahan (Battle: Los Angeles)
Dean Winters (Terminator: TSCC)
Ian McShane (Hellboy)
John Leguizamo (Spawn)
Willem Dafoe (Spider-Man)
Bridget Regan (Agent Carter)
Lance Reddick (Jonah Hex)

Keanu Reeves in John Wick (2014)After John Wick loses his wife, Helen, to a terminal illness, he receives a beagle puppy named Daisy from his late wife to help him cope with his grief. Despite John’s stoic demeanor, he bonds with the puppy and they spend their day driving around in his vintage 1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1. At a gas station, he encounters a trio of Russian gangsters whose leader, Iosef Tarasov, insists on buying his car, but John repeatedly states that it is not for sale. Angered, Iosef and his mobsters follow John to his home that night, knock him unconscious, steal his car, and kill Daisy.Keanu Reeves in John Wick (2014)Iosef takes the Mustang to a chop shop run by Aurelio to have the VIN changed. Aurelio recognizes the car and, upon learning that Iosef stole it from John, punches him before throwing him out of his shop. John visits Aurelio, who tells him Iosef is the son of Viggo Tarasov, the head of the Russian crime syndicate in New York City. Viggo, informed by Aurelio of Iosef’s activity with John, beats and berates Iosef before explaining to him who John Wick is: an assassin, formerly in Viggo’s employ, nicknamed “Baba Yaga” (translated in the film as Russian for “Boogeyman”) due to his lethal works. When John wanted to retire and marry Helen, Viggo gave him an “impossible task,” implied to involve multiple assassinations in a short period of time. John succeeded, and his efforts were key in establishing the Tarasov syndicate.Keanu Reeves and Alfie Allen in John Wick (2014)Viggo tries to talk John out of seeking retribution, but John silently refuses. Viggo then sends a thirteen-man hit squad to John’s house, but John kills them all and has the bodies professionally removed. An unsurprised Viggo places a $2 million bounty on John’s head and personally offers the contract to John’s mentor, Marcus. John seeks refuge at the Continental Hotel, which caters exclusively to the criminal underworld and permits no “business” on its premises. Viggo doubles the bounty for those willing to break the rules to kill John at the Continental.Keanu Reeves, Daniel Bernhardt, Michael Nyqvist, and Vladislav Koulikov in John Wick (2014)Winston, the Continental’s owner, tells John that Viggo has Iosef protected at his nightclub, the Red Circle. John enters the Red Circle and kills his way to Iosef, but Viggo’s henchman, Kirill, waylays John, allowing Iosef to escape. John retreats to the Continental to patch up his injuries. Ms. Perkins, an assassin and former acquaintance, sneaks into John’s room to kill him, but Marcus alerts John, allowing him to subdue Perkins. He forces Perkins to reveal the location of Viggo’s front, knocks her unconscious and leaves her with fellow assassin, Harry, to await punishment. However, Perkins frees herself and kills Harry.Keanu Reeves in John Wick (2014)John travels to the Little Russia church which serves as Viggo’s front and destroys Viggo’s cache of money and blackmail material. When Viggo and his team arrive, John ambushes them, but he is subdued and captured. Viggo taunts John for thinking he could leave his old life behind. Before John can be killed, Marcus intervenes again, allowing John to free himself, kill Kirill, and accost Viggo, who reveals Iosef’s location. John then travels to the safe house and kills Iosef and his bodyguards. Perkins learns that John and Marcus have been in contact and tells Viggo, who has Marcus beaten and tortured before executing him in his home. Viggo calls John to report this, planning to have Perkins ambush him. While waiting for John, Perkins is called to a meeting with Winston, who has her executed for killing Harry on Continental grounds.Keanu Reeves in John Wick (2014)Winston calls John to inform him that Viggo is planning to escape by helicopter. John races to the harbor helipad, where he kills Viggo’s remaining henchmen before engaging Viggo in a brutal brawl on the dock. Viggo pulls a knife, and John allows himself to be stabbed, surprising Viggo. John then disarms Viggo and fatally wounds him. John breaks into a waterfront animal clinic to treat his wound and releases a pit bull puppy scheduled to be euthanized. John and the dog walk home along the boardwalk where he had his last date with Helen.Keanu Reeves in John Wick (2014)What makes John Wick different from other shoot em’ up movies is that we’re provided with details of John’s former life, including old partners and a hotel front which leads the audience eager to wonder the many tales that can be told about John Wick. The movie is fast paced, never really a dull moment, and it always keeps you wondering what he’s going to do next and how.

REVIEW: ABDUCTION

CAST

Taylor Lautner (Twilight)
Lily Collins (Mirror Mirror)
Alfred Molina (Spider-Man 2)
Jason Isaacs (Star Trek: Discovery)
Maria Bello (The Cooler)
Sigourney Weaver (Alien)
Michael Nyqvist (John Wick)
Dermot Mulroney (Young Guns)
Nickola Shreli (Hostel – Part III)
Elisabeth Röhm (Joy)
Ilia Volok (Power Rangers: Wild Force)

Denzel Whitaker and Taylor Lautner in Abduction (2011)Nathan Harper (Taylor Lautner) is an 18-year-old high school senior living in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with his parents Kevin (Jason Isaacs) and Mara (Maria Bello). He has troubles from recurring nightmares and has been seeing psychiatrist Dr. Geraldine “Geri” Bennett (Sigourney Weaver) to diagnose them. Nathan is teamed with Karen Murphy (Lily Collins) for a school research project on missing children. Nathan discovers he looks very much like an age-progression photo of a missing child, Steven Price. His investigations show that his parents are probably biologically unrelated. He approaches Mara and she confirms the truth. She goes off crying to get his father to help her explain it all to him. Two men claiming to be from the Department of Juvenile Justice arrive at Nathan’s home in the evening while Mara is on her way to get Kevin. Mara is suspicious and attacks the two, but is shot and killed by the intruders. Kevin is also killed, but not before subduing one agent, as well as yelling for Nathan to run. Nathan runs but returns for Karen, who is now captured by the remaining agent. Nathan overpowers the agent and rescues Karen, he attempts to find out who the man is, but is suddenly forced out of the house because a bomb planted there is about to detonate.Taylor Lautner and Lily Collins in Abduction (2011)The blast injures Karen, so Nathan takes her to the hospital and attempts to contact the police. His call is intercepted by CIA operative Frank Burton (Alfred Molina), who tells Nathan he is in danger and he will send two men to collect him. Nathan is suspicious and while he is trying to make sense of it all, Dr. Bennett appears and helps him and Karen escape. While driving away, Dr. Bennett explains that Nathan’s biological father, Martin (Dermot Mulroney), stole an encrypted list of 25 corrupt CIA operatives from the Serbian terrorist Nikola Kozlow (Michael Nyqvist) when Nathan was 3: Kozlow then planned on abducting Nathan to coerce Martin to hand over the list. Nathan had been given to his adoptive parents to protect him. Kozlow used the website to claim Nathan as the missing child Steven Price in order to find him. Dr. Bennett gives Nathan the address of a safe house in Arlington, Virginia and tells him to trust only his biological father Martin and a man named Paul Rasmus. Kozlow’s men follow them, but Bennett is able to help them escape. Meanwhile, Burton is warned by his superior to end the situation as soon as possible once he learns of the involvement of Bennett, who is revealed to be a former CIA operative.Taylor Lautner and Lily Collins in Abduction (2011)Arriving at the safehouse: the two obtain money, a gun, a photo of Nathan’s biological mother Lorna Price (Elisabeth Röhm), and a cell phone. Karen tries to call her family, but her call is intercepted by Burton and the CIA, forcing them to flee. Finding the address for his mother, the pair discover the address is a cemetery and that Lorna has died. Nathan and Karen visit her grave and find fresh flowers there, and, according to the graveyard attendant, the sender is Paul Rasmus, who lives in Nebraska. The two take an Amtrak passenger train to get there using fake IDs provided by their friend Gilly (Denzel Whitaker). En route they confess their feelings for each other and share a passionate kiss. They are unaware that they are being followed by Kozlow’s right-hand man who abducts Karen when she goes out for food. He leaves her bound and gagged with duct tape in a separate room, but she frees herself by using a piece of broken glass. Nathan fights the right-hand man and he throws him out the window. After the train stops the two make a run for it. Burton’s team finds Kozlow’s henchman and tracks them down.Taylor Lautner and Lily Collins in Abduction (2011)Burton explains the data that Martin had stolen contains Burton’s name on the list. As Burton tries to play that off, the agents are attacked by Kozlow’s snipers. Nathan and Karen take off in a car before they can be caught. As they flee, the cell phone from Kozlow’s man rings, the caller is Kozlow and he threatens to kill Karen’s parents if Nathan does not hand over the data. Nathan gets Kozlow to agree to make the transaction at a Pittsburgh Pirates baseball game at their home stadium, the PNC Park.Alfred Molina and Taylor Lautner in Abduction (2011)Nathan works with Gilly to obtain tickets and secures a gun to one of the seats with the intent to kill Kozlow. Martin calls Nathan and warns him off, but Nathan refuses to listen. When Kozlow arrives, Karen takes Kozlow’s photo so Nathan can recognize him. The two meet and Kozlow tells Nathan how he killed his mother when Nathan was 3 after she refused to give up Martin’s location. Kozlow grabs the gun from Nathan and demands the list, Nathan bolts and Kozlow gives chase, followed by CIA operatives who have seen them in the crowd. Nathan is able to escape and Kozlow is killed by Martin. Burton, his superior and his agents arrive. Burton asks for the cell phone, promising to give the decrypted results to his superior. However, Martin had warned his superior about Burton’s corruption and takes the phone himself while Burton is taken into custody. Martin calls Nathan, apologizing for not being the father he should have been, Nathan asks him to show himself but Martin refuses. Bennett arrives with Karen and says she has arranged for Nathan to live with her until he decides what to pursue in his life. As the movie ends, Nathan and Karen go on a date in the empty PNC Park.Taylor Lautner in Abduction (2011)OK, we got to face that Abduction is not a ground-breaking title, but it’s far from trash. It’s a fine movie besides some goofs that you will only notice if you are watch every single scene several times. There is no riddles, nothing to put you trying to figure it out. A fast pacing movie enjoyable after a day at work. Twilight haters are being too harsh on the reviews, Abduction was never supposed to win an academy awards, but it’s not a waste of time neither money if you are looking for a light action movie.

REVIEW: THE GIRL WHO KICKED THE HORNET’S NEST

CAST

Noomi Rapace (Prometheus)
Michael Nyqvist (John Wick)
Lena Endre (The Master)
Georgi Staykov (Mission London)
Annika Hallin (Glowing Stars)
Per Oscarsson (Midsommer)

The film begins at the conclusion of the The Girl Who Played with Fire. Salander is airlifted to a hospital in Gothenburg, to recover from gunshot wounds inflicted by her father, Zala. She is cared for by Dr. Anders Jonasson, who prevents anyone except Annika Giannini, her lawyer, from visiting.

At the same time, Evert Gullberg and Fredrik Clinton, old colleagues from the “Section,” a group within the Swedish Security Service, reconnect and decide that they must silence Zalachenko and Salander to preserve cold-war secrets. Zalachenko is still alive, in a hospital room down the hall from Salander. Gullberg arrives at the hospital at the same time as Giannini, proceeds to Zalachenko’s room, and shoots him dead. Giannini saves Salander by barricading the door to Salander’s room. Gullberg, unable to reach Salander, shoots himself. Clinton visits psychiatrist Dr. Peter Teleborian, and explains his plan to silence Salander by having her committed to St. Stephen’s mental hospital again. Dr. Teleborian tries to meet with Salander to conduct a psychological evaluation, but is obstructed by her doctor, Dr. Jonasson.

Blomkvist persuades Dr. Jonasson to sneak an internet phone (a Sony Ericsson Xperia X1 in the film) into Salander’s room, whereupon Salander immediately contacts her fellow hacker, Plague, to see if he can find something on Dr. Teleborian. She then tells Blomkvist that Giannini has permission to use a video showing Nils Bjurman in the act of raping her. Bjurman was her state-appointed guardian and one of the people she is accused of murdering. Blomkvist compels a civil servant, Bertil Janeryd, to reveal that Gullberg and Rottinger had visited the Prime Minister years ago to urge a cover-up of the Zalachenko affair. Salander starts working on an autobiography to document her actions and motives from childhood to the present. She continues to have nightmares of memories about her time at St. Stephen’s, her father and half-brother, and of her two-hour ordeal with Bjurman. Blomkvist continues to pursue Dr. Teleborian with Christer’s help. Salander finishes her autobiography and e-mails it to Blomkvist, and Dr. Jonasson informs Lisbeth she cannot remain at the hospital, but must be transferred to prison in a few days. He is surprised that she is not worried about the trial.

Niedermann, who previously tried to kill Salander’s lover Miriam, has remained a fugitive, wanted for killing a police officer. Sonny, of the outlaw motorcycle gang from the previous film, is informed that he was searched, but found clean, and that his friend had sent Niedermann to hide out in his home. There, he finds his brother dead and his girlfriend tied, gagged, and apparently assaulted. She tells him that Niedermann was the culprit, and Sonny vows revenge. Clinton, in dialysis, is given a copy of Salander’s autobiography, and is told that none of it can be proven. Meanwhile, Berger has been receiving anonymous e-mail threats, which causes an uproar in the office. In prison, Salander is interrogated by the prosecutor, but says nothing. Giannini is later given Salander’s computer and the DVD of her sexual abuse. Niedermann breaks into an abandoned warehouse and kills a bicyclist who happens to be there having his lunch. Dr. Teleborian finally meets with Salander, who again remains silent. When Berger’s bedroom window is smashed, she calls Milton Security. Thanks to surveillance by Milton Security, Blomkvist learns that someone that night broke into his apartment and planted cocaine and cash there. He concludes that the Section are trying to frame him, since they cannot hurt the Millennium magazine itself. Blomkvist decides to meet Berger at a restaurant named “Samir’s Gryta.” The police try to warn Berger of an attempt to kill them there, and Blomkvist fends off the assault as the police rush to the restaurant. The Section becomes dismayed upon learning of the failed attempt.

On the day of her murder trial, Salander finally sheds her hospital-patient persona and enters court with piercings, a mohawk hairstyle, black makeup, and expensive black leather clothing. Called as an expert witness for the prosecution, Dr. Teleborian characterizes Salander’s autobiography as merely the product of her paranoid delusions. Giannini gradually demolishes Dr. Teleborian’s credibility, using Salander’s words and files from the hospital. She shows the video proving Bjurman raped Salander.

As Giannini presents her case, the police arrest the people involved with the Section and seize their place of operation. Called to the stand, Blomkvist shows that Dr. Teleborian had written his final psychiatric evaluation of Salander after being denied access by her doctor. Then Giannini calls Edklinth to the stand, and he states that the opinions were formulated in cooperation with Jonas Sandberg, using his computer as proof. Dr. Teleborian is left speechless. Edklinth tells Dr. Teleborian he is to be arrested on charges of possessing over 8,000 items of child pornography (which Plague had discovered after hacking into his laptop), and his computer is seized as evidence. After Dr. Teleborian is arrested, the court rules that no further need exists for Salander to be held in police custody.
The Millennium staff celebrate their victory, as Erika returns and reconciles with Mikael. Salander is encouraged by Giannini to check the property she has inherited from Zala and discovers the warehouse where Niedermann was hiding. Niedermann attempts to trap her there and kill her, but she is too fast and clever for that. She ambushes him with a nail gun and attaches Niedermann’s feet to the wooden platform on which he is standing. His inability to feel pain finally works against him. By the time he realizes what is happening, it is too late for him to escape. She considers nailing him in the head, but instead phones Sonny and tells the bikers where to find him. Then she calls the police. Salander returns home, and Blomkvist briefly visits to tell her that the motorcycle gang killed Niedermann and were arrested at the warehouse afterwards. Lisbeth and Mikael have a brief conversation that might or might not be a prelude to a further relationship.The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets Nest provides a cracking closure and gives you exactly what you want in style.

REVIEW: THE GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE

CAST

Noomi Rapace (Prometheus)
Michael Nyqvist (John Wick)
Lena Endre (The Master)
Peter Andersson (Underworld Blood Wars)
Per Oscarsson (Midsommer)
Georgi Staykov (Mission London)
Annika Hallin (Glowing Stars)
Tanja Lorentzon (Wallander)

Lisbeth Salander (Noomi Rapace) purchases an apartment in Stockholm. On returning to Sweden after nearly a year living abroad, Salander reconnects with her former lover Miriam Wu (Yasmine Garbi) and offers her free use of her previous home in return for forwarding her mail. Later, Salander confronts Nils Bjurman (Peter Andersson) after hacking into his mail and discovering he has an appointment booked with a tattoo removal specialist. Threatening him with his own gun, she warns him not to remove the tattoo that she etched on his abdomen as revenge for sexually abusing her, marking him as “a pervert, a rapist and a sadistic pig.”

Millennium magazine welcomes Dag Svensson (Hans Christian Thulin), a new journalist who is writing an exposé on prostitution and human trafficking in Sweden. Dag’s girlfriend, Mia Bergman, is writing her doctoral thesis on sex trafficking. Dag is nearly finished with the story and is confronting those who will be exposed by the article. Dag and his girlfriend are about to leave on a holiday and ask Mikael Blomkvist (Michael Nyqvist) to come to his apartment and collect some photographs. At the same time Dag also asks Mikael to inquire about someone called “Zala,” who may have a connection to his present research. Mikael arrives at their apartment late at night to collect photographs for the article but finds the two sources lying dead. The murder weapon is tracked to Bjurman who is also deceased. Lisbeth Salander is the prime suspect, as her fingerprints happen to be on the gun as well. Salander tells Blomkvist that she did not kill anyone and that he needs to find the mysterious “Zala.”

In an effort to find Lisbeth’s residence, Mikael contacts her boxing trainer and friend, Paolo Roberto. While he is unaware of Salander’s whereabouts, Paolo does know Miriam, who also trained with them, and promises to pay her a visit. Near her apartment, Paolo witnesses Miriam being kidnapped by strongman Niedermann. Paolo follows his car to a deserted barn, where he hears him beat Miriam for information about Salander. Paolo comes in to rescue her but Niedermann is more than a match for the skilled boxer. Niedermann sets the barn aflame to finish the job, but the two manage to escape.

News breaks of the attack and Paolo gives his account to the police. After Blomkvist leaves information he has discovered about the case on his computer for Salander to hack into and read, she leaves a message to him saying, “Thank you for being my friend.” He realizes that she intends to set out alone to find the man who framed her and that she may not survive. A disguised Salander visits Miriam in hospital to apologize for getting her involved. Without giving anything away, Salander confirms the police sketch of Niedermann with Miriam and then disappears. Knowing now that he is Salander’s friend, Miriam calls Blomkvist to the hospital to give him keys that Lisbeth accidentally dropped during her visit. Noticing that one of them is for a post office box, Mikael is able to access and read Salander’s mail and locate her apartment. Meanwhile, Salander continues her efforts to find Niedermann by patiently staking out his post office box. She eventually sees someone retrieve his mail and follows him to a small house near Gosseberga. Researching through the material in Lisbeth’s apartment Blomkvist finds the video of Bjurman raping Salander.

In the offices of Millennium magazine, Paolo explains he tracked down Niedermann and learned that he has congenital analgesia which makes him doubly formidable because he cannot feel pain. They trace Niedermann to a company owned by “Karl Axel Bodin.” Blomkvist has Erika Berger make copies of the documents including the 1993 police report, forwards the originals to Bublanski and sets out to find Salander. Salander crosses the grounds and enters the Gosseberga house, but Niedermann has been alerted by motion detectors and knocks her out. She awakens to see her father, Alexander Zalachenko, an old man who walks with a stick and is heavily scarred by the burns she inflicted as a child. He dismisses her mother (who is now dead) as a whore and belittles her rape at the hands of Bjurman. He reveals that Niedermann is her half-brother. Niedermann killed Bjurman to prevent him from revealing any of Zalachenko’s secrets. Zalachenko is confident he will not be caught, since being an invalid means the idea of his involvement in the murders lacks plausibility.

They lead Lisbeth to a shallow grave in the woods. She tells him the police will find him soon and all that he has said has been published online through her hidden cellphone. Seeing through her bluff, he shoots Lisbeth at close range several times as she attempts to escape and buries her alive. Left for dead, Salander digs her way out using her silver-plated cigarette case gifted to her by Wu. Hidden in the woodshed, she surprises Zalachenko with an axe. She then keeps Niedermann at bay, both with Zalachenko’s gun and Niedermann’s delusions, just as Blomkvist comes coasting up the driveway. Ambulances and police arrive to take away Salander and Zalachenko who are both very badly injured.The Girl Who Played With Fire doesn’t have the spark of the first movie, but it still has an electric brilliance and scathing social exploration.

REVIEW: THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO (2009)

CAST

Noomi Rapace (Prometheus)
Michael Nyqvist (John Wick)
Lena Endre (The Master)
Sven-Bertil Taube (London Voodoo)
Peter Haber (Beck)
Peter Andersson (Underworld Blood Wars)
Marika Lagercrantz (All Things Fair)
Ingvar Hirdwall(Mouth To Mouth)
Björn Granath (The Ox)

In December 2002, Mikael Blomkvist, publisher of Millennium magazine, loses a libel case involving allegations he published about billionaire financier Hans-Erik Wennerström. He is sentenced to three months in prison and a hefty fine. Lisbeth Salander, a brilliant but damaged surveillance agent and hacker, is hired by Henrik Vanger, the patriarch of the wealthy Vanger family, to investigate Blomkvist. Vanger then hires Blomkvist to investigate the disappearance of his niece, Harriet, who vanished on Children’s Day in 1966. Vanger believes that Harriet was murdered by a family member.

Salander, who was ruled mentally incompetent as a child, is appointed a new legal guardian, Nils Bjurman, after her previous guardian suffers a stroke. Bjurman, a sexual sadist, forces Salander to perform fellatio on him in return for the money she needs to buy a new computer; he withholds the full amount she has requested. At her next meeting with Bjurman, he beats and rapes her. Having used a hidden camera to record Bjurman raping her, Salander returns to take her revenge, torturing and threatening to ruin him unless he gives her full control of her life and finances. She then uses a tattoo gun to brand Bjurman’s abdomen with the message “I am a sadist pig and a rapist”.
Noomi Rapace in Män som hatar kvinnor (2009)
Blomkvist moves to a cottage on the Vanger estate and meets the Vanger family, including Harriet’s brother Martin and cousin Cecilia. Inside Harriet’s diary, he finds a list of five names alongside what might appear to be phone numbers. He visits retired police inspector Morell, who informs him that his investigation team had been unable to decipher them. After viewing photographs taken during the Children’s Day parade, Blomkvist sees Harriet’s facial expression change suddenly just before she leaves and, after obtaining photographs taken from the same side of the street as her, comes to believe that Harriet may have seen her murderer that day.
Noomi Rapace in Män som hatar kvinnor (2009)
Using her access to Blomkvist’s computer, Salander learns that the numbers in Harriet’s diary are references to verses in the Book of Leviticus and emails Blomkvist anonymously. Blomkvist works out that Salander sent the mail and hires her as a research assistant. Together, Blomkvist and Salander connect all but one of the names on Harriet’s list to murdered women. They are all Jewish names, which intrigues Blomkvist, as the Vanger family has a long history of antisemitism. During the investigation, Blomkvist and Salander become lovers.

They suspect Henrik’s reclusive brother Harald to be the murderer, as the two other Vanger brothers had already died by the time Harriet disappeared. Salander searches through Vanger’s business records to trace Harald to the crime scenes, while Blomkvist breaks into Harald’s house, believing it to be unoccupied. When Harald attacks Blomkvist, Martin appears and saves him. He escorts Blomkvist to his home, where Blomkvist reveals what he and Salander have uncovered. Martin drugs him. Salander’s search of the company accounts points to Martin and his late father, Gottfried, having been jointly responsible for the murders. She returns to the cottage to find Blomkvist missing. Blomkvist wakes to find himself bound in Martin’s cellar. Martin boasts about raping and murdering women for decades but denies killing Harriet, insisting that she disappeared. As Martin is in the process of hanging Blomkvist, Salander appears and attacks Martin with a golf club. While she frees Blomkvist, Martin flees in his car. Salander gives chase on her motorcycle. When Martin drives off the road, Salander finds him still alive but trapped in the vehicle. As the car goes up in flames, she makes no attempt to save him.
Noomi Rapace in Män som hatar kvinnor (2009)Blomkvist realizes that Cecilia’s late sister Anita was the near-double of Harriet and that some of the film taken on the day of Harriet’s disappearance show Anita, not Harriet as previously thought. Blomkvist and Salander discover that Harriet has been using Anita’s name and is still alive in Australia. Blomkvist flies there to look for her, and he persuades her to return to Sweden, where she is reunited with her uncle. Harriet explains the truth about her disappearance: that her father and her brother had repeatedly raped her; that she killed her father by drowning him, only to find herself being blackmailed by Martin; and that her cousin Anita had smuggled her away from the island.

Salander’s mother, living in a nursing home, apologizes for not choosing a “better papa” for her. Salander then visits Blomkvist in prison and gives him new information on the Wennerström case. After his release, Blomkvist publishes a new story on Wennerström in Millennium, which ruins Wennerström and makes the magazine a national sensation. Wennerström is then found dead, a presumed suicide. His offshore bank account in the Cayman Islands is raided; the police suspect a young woman caught on CCTV, whom Blomkvist recognizes as Salander in disguise. The film ends with Salander, dressed very smartly as she exits her car, walking along a sunny beach promenade.This is a highly effective thriller, one of the darkest and most exciting I’ve ever seen. The story in itself is no better than those laid out in dozens of other thrillers or whodunnits, but it is beautifully, virtually flawlessly realized. A must-see.