The Girl in the Spider's Web ★½

i don't envy anyone having to follow David Fincher, but this is almost BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY bad.

eschewing the dread and nuance of the previous films (any of them, really), this iteration is — at best — a low-rent James Bond movie that takes a perilously glib approach to psychosexual trauma. more often, it feels like a nü-metal remake of the already godawful MERCURY RISING. between this and HUNTER KILLER, i think i've gotten over any lingering nostalgia for the '90s.

Alvarez is totally boxed in by Fincher's aesthetic, handcuffed (or sealed in latex) by the severity of his style but also trying to resist it at every turn. Foy… could have been good? maybe? if she were given even the slightest hint of an actual character? or maybe not. i *adore* her on THE CROWN, and think she does compelling work in a thankless role in FIRST MAN, but she's never as serrated, wounded, or dangerous as either Rooney Mara or Noomi Rapace. not even close. and don't get me started on the doofus they got for the Daniel Craig part — Lakeith Stanfield's rogue NSA agent might be a total mess who strains credibility at every turn and should have been cut from the movie completely, but at least *he* feels wasted.

on the bright side, there's a minor character who has a detachable face, and his sinuses seemed *really* clear, and i was kind of happy for him. every cloud has a silver lining and all that. detachable face guy 2020.