Are film versions better than the books?

Helen Underwood contributed to this report–

From a young age, many people have always enjoyed reading and for some there is nothing better than picking up a new book. Just flicking through the pages, getting lost in the plot and the actual smell of the fresh new pages, is a whole enjoyment in itself.

However some people dislike reading and would much enjoy watching a film. Which is why adapting a novel in to a film, is becoming more and more popular in the film industry. For example, “Harry Potter” and “Lord of The Rings”  all started out as books.


The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo is the latest book to be turned into a film. Photo: Sony Pictures

“The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”, which has recently been released in English, (as previously it was only available in Swedish) was also a very famous novel, by Swedish author and journalist Stieg Larson.

So after reading the novel many people decided to go and see the film version, to see if it compared in any way to how good the novel was. Sometimes when going to see an adaptation, it misses crucial parts of the novel out, and just isn’t the same as reading it. However “The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo” is surprisingly very closely linked with the book.

The story is about a man named Mikael Blomkvist, played by Daniel Craig who writes for a Swedish Magazine called Millennium. However at the beginning of the story he loses a libel case and is sentenced to prison and ordered to pay fines.

As the story unfolds, he is asked to go and meet a man called Henrik Vanger, who asks him to solve the murder mystery of his niece Harriet, which happened 36 years before. The rest of the plot is about him trying to solve this mystery, with help from Lisbeth Salander (played by Rooney Mara) who works for a surveillance company. She is a very unusual woman who is deemed as having social problems and has to be under the care of a guardian, who is replaced by a lawyer when he dies.

The movie follows the murder plot very closely; however some parts are still slightly different from the story. For example, in the novel, Blomyvist is portrayed to be much more of a womaniser. It is clear that he is having an affair with the boss of Millennium, and his assistant Lisbeth, however it does not mention the other women he sleeps with. Such as Cecilia Vanger, who is the cousin of Harriet, the murdered girl.

Another minor plot, which the film misses out is the part where Lisbeth’s mother dies, in the film in fact Lisbeth’s mother is not mentioned at all. This does not affect it however, but it would have been interesting to delve a bit more into Lisbeth’s personal life, as all we see is how weird she is and a social recluse.

The film version of the novel really develops the book, even though some of the scenes are very graphic. However this gives an edge to the story. The film version, of this particular novel, is definitely worth watching if you have read the book or not, as it really does enhance the novel.

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