‘The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’ May Have Problems With Women

With the embargo imbroglio a thing of the past and the opening day pushed up to tomorrow, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo is officially everywhere. However, according to New York magazine, there is concern that the movie won’t attract the female audience that has made the books so popular. Polls show that while awareness of the film among women is high, the percentage who actually plan on watching the movie is much lower.

Marketing execs have chimed in on the issue, with a couple focusing on the nature of the violence against women that the film depicts. One exec tells New York, “Hyper-realistic violence against women is very different from the average horror movie.” Another exec focused on the dark marketing posters.

The nature of the violence may indeed be a sticking point. A couple of years ago, The New York Times Magazine took a look at the female attraction to horror flicks. “Audiences love a woman who can take back the knife,” the article said, turning to the common horror trope of the “final girl,” like Jaime Lee Curtis’ Halloween character who finds the will and the savvy to kill the monster. Before that happens, there’s a lot of blood, screaming, and gore, but none of it on the real-life level of that experienced or witnessed by Lisbeth Salander and the other characters in the Stieg Larsson books.

But, Lisbeth does take back the knife. And the gun, and a taser, and anything else she can get her hands on.

The movie is expected to be a success, which would be a welcome change from the slumping box office receipts that have come out of the past few weekends. And Sony isn’t letting up on the promotions. In addition to the line from H&M, there are the interviews with the castdirector, and crew all across the Web.

I’d like to see the movie, but just as much as a few others: We Need to Talk About Kevin (the book is amazing) and Young Adult, for example. We’re sure everyone is getting a jump on the possible Oscar nominees at this point, and this is sure to be one.