Has Lisbeth lost her luster?

Has Lisbeth lost her luster?

Universal Pictures

Mara has not been in many movies, but her performance as Lisbeth boosted her to stardom.

Ethan Perushek, Graphic Design Editor

Growing up, we all reach that moment where we realize that forces greater than us are keeping us down. Whether that force is real or imaginary is irrelevant, it feels as if our wings are being clipped.

Not only have Stieg Larson’s Lisbeth Salander’s wings been clipped, but she has been broken, shattered, battered, bruised, neglected, and violated. She is the worse-case scenario of governmental and parental ambivalence. Yet, whether she is raped, beaten, stolen from, or deemed incompetent, she gets back up and fights.

We all root for her, yes, we deem some of her actions excessively brutal, but deep down we realize the insane animalistic courage, pride, and pain that drove a tiny battered girl to her actions. No matter her conduct, we find the need to be on her side.

Lisbeth is the hero that comes out of the cries of suppression and pain, many a time cries that go unheard. Lisbeth has shown the world the pain of being left to fend for oneself in the modern jungle. We don’t need to fend off vicious tigers but something much more devious and cruel: humans.

Rarely do movies reveal an actor completely turning into the character. Yes, many actors delve deep, but in the end, you still see the actor, not the character. Yet by the end of “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo,” Rooney Mara ceases to be herself; she has become Lisbeth Salander.

Mara has not been in many movies, but her performance as Lisbeth boosted her to stardom.

Mara had to go through intense physical training for the film, such as motorcycle training and martial arts training, and even starting to smoke for the role. She also had to mentally prepare for the intense psychological strain of being in multiple rape scenes.

The most intense scenes for Lisbeth come near the beginning of the film, but once she meets up with Mikael Blomkvist (Daniel Craig), she has to develop one of the strangest, yet purest, relationships. Separated by age, but brought together by circumstance, Lisbeth and Mikael become intimate, and even that seems natural.

From the first time Mara looked into the camera, all traces of the actress disappeared and all that was left was Lisbeth, the broken bringer of justice. When the credits start to role, Lisbeth won’t just make a mark, she will leave a scar.

The build up was insane; the ads were everywhere; the film was great, yet the cash wasn’t rolling in. After a few weeks in the box office, “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” is just starting meet its expectations. Has Lisbeth lost her luster?

Have we forsaken the most interesting heroine in the modern age for, albeit decent, over-the-top Tom Cruise flicks and adaptations of Holmes that make him more of an action hero than a keen detective? Or is it that we no longer care about the cause Lisbeth champions, that we forgotten the problems of sex trade and governmental neglect, just as we seem to forget about each problem weeks after we’re told about them?

So has Lisbeth lost her luster or have we left the punk rock heroine of equality to be neglected once again?

Mr. Tom Backen believes Lisbeth is an interesting and worthwhile character. “Lisbeth has not lost her luster; she is one of the most compelling contemporary charcters. What motivates her is justice and some would say that the whole point of life is to search for justice,” said Mr. Backen

Others think the problem lies with the audience. “American audiences have too short of an attention span. These books were huge last year, and frankly this movie was just late. This is not about Lisbeth, its about the audience,” said Ms. Kari Koshiol.