It’s the Year of the Dragon in more ways than one.
Monday marked the beginning of Chinese New Year, a 15-day celebration that ushers in the next lunar year. According to the Chinese zodiac, every year is symbolized by one of 12 animals and 2012 is the year of the dragon. The dragon is legendary in Chinese folklore, and those born during dragon years are supposedly powerful, innovative, brave, and passionate. The year of the dragon is said to be the luckiest.
After going to the movies last weekend, I’m convinced it will be the year of the dragon at this year’s Oscars as well. On Wednesday, newbie actress Rooney Mara was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. To say she did a good job in the role of the Lisbeth Salander would be a massive understatement. The character of Lisbeth shows a spectrum of emotions: she’s tough and vulnerable, angry and kind, terrified and brave. And it all comes through on the screen. Mara’s performance was riveting in every moment–and for a two-hour-forty-minute movie that is saying a lot. Set in icy Sweden, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo received a total of five Oscar nominations, including Best Cinematography.
You have to go see it.
You really, really have to go see it, especially if you liked the book. Fair warning, though, there are some very graphic scenes.
Personally, I loved the book, which was written by Stieg Larsson. The Swedish author died before the book was published and never got to see his Millennium Trilogy sell 65 million copies and sit atop the bestseller lists for years. What’s the appeal with these novels? I thought Dragon Tattoo was fresh, suspenseful, edgy, and hard to predict.
Typically when I fall in love with a book, I end up disappointed by the movie, but that wasn’t the case this time. If anything, the movie–which had me gasping, cheering, and (at some points) covering my eyes–was even more impressive than the novel.
To win the Oscar, 26-year-old Rooney Mara will have to beat out Meryl Streep, who has been nominated for 17 Academy Awards. I think she can do it. Have you seen the movie? What do you think?
As a die-hard book lover, I want to take a moment to cheer for the fact that six of this year’s nine Oscar nominees for Best Picture came from books: The Descendants, Hugo,The Help, Moneyball, War Horse and Extremely Loud & IncrediblyClose. Isn’t that cool? I haven’t seen all these films, but I’m going to try to check all of them off my list by the awards show on February 26.
Do you have any favorite books that were made into movies? Thumbs up or thumbs down?
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