Dagen H (Any resemblance to ice cream is purely coincidental)

While on the subject of films, but otherwise completely unrelated to the Oscars, so excuse me, I went to see the Hollywood version of ‘The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo’, a couple of weeks ago. I suppose at this point I should bow my head and admit to the shame of having read and enjoyed the Millennium Trilogy. Moving swiftly on, I found the film to present an accurate portrayal of the novel with the characters, settings and events, meeting my expectations. However, there was one incident, the details of which I have been trying to recall without success. The story involves a flashback scene to 1965 and a motor accident that occurred on a bridge. What I have been trying to remember is whether the film shows the cars driving on the left or the right. Some of you may remember that until 1967 cars in Sweden drove on the left. What adds a little bit of spice to the story is that Swedish cars were a ‘left hand drive’ as well. It should be fairly easy to spot such an anomaly, so if any of you have seen the film and can recall the moment, perhaps you can put me out my misery and let me know whether the producers got it right.

I am keen to see the Swedish version of the film which I know that some people preferred to the American version, though I suppose it is safe to say, ‘they would wouldn’t they’. I wonder whether they got it right with the bridge scene.

Note: the day on which the Swedes changed sides 3rd September 1967, was known as Dagen H. You can read more about it here. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dagen_H

32 thoughts on “Dagen H (Any resemblance to ice cream is purely coincidental)”

  1. Sipu, I enjoyed the original version and don’t want to see the remake, on principle. Why should Hollywood presume to do everything better? It doesn’t. But sorry I don’t remember the scene you mention.

    I hear that the Oirish plan a similar move but will stagger it. HGVs one day, all other traffic the next. (Groan)

  2. Is this the scene?

    Clearly shows a LHD

    Does it jog your memory about the film?

    Click the pic for a much bigger pic and clearer detail

  3. Janus: the Oirish, by the way, have abandoned plans to switch direction.
    They realised that there is little point as the only land border they have is with
    the United Kingdom.

  4. Janus, you should not let your prejudices interfere with the facts. Until you have seen both films, you cannot judge. I am never influenced by my prejudices, as you well know. 😉

    Hi Soutie, no, it is not that scene, but thanks for looking.

  5. Oh,Okay

    Here’s the trailer, all cars appear to be LHD (1:13) and there is a car driving on the right (0:21)

  6. No shame at all in enjoying a thoroughly good story! I haven’t seen the original film or the remake – so can’t help with your misery… 🙂

  7. Sipu :

    Janus, you should not let your prejudices interfere with the facts. Until you have seen both films, you cannot judge. I am never influenced by my prejudices, as you well know. ;)

    Hi Soutie, no, it is not that scene, but thanks for looking.

    Sorry, you’re right as usual. James Bond as Swedish hack doesn’t cut it for me.

  8. I don’t speak Swedish, so I read the trilogy in English (which doesn’t mention the change, as far as I recall).

    I’ll watch the film in English, too, when it comes around.

    Watching a drama in a language I don’t understand, trying to become involved in the story line whilst I’m attempting to read the subtitles, is far too much of a labour for me, as it was for Boadicea when we watched the first few minutes of the Swedish version and then gave up.

  9. by the way, there is also an 8 minute trailer here

    I don’t have the patience to watch it, it might help!

  10. As Sky and Auntie BEEB are both running blanket coverage of whose frock some ‘starlet’ is wearing at a party, I am watching the Portuguese news to find out what is happening in the real world. Bet you didn’t know that Académica drew 0-0 with Benfica over the weekend, or that the controversial new timetables for the Lisbon river taxis on the Tejo take effect from today. Ha!


  11. Dealing with sub-titles takes practice, I’ve found. In fact I often check the Danish to see if I have understood colloquial American English correctly!

  12. Soutie

    I’ve often needed sub-titles on some of your posts

    They are much improved of late though, aren’t they!

  13. Hi Soutie, I think we have an answer. At second 31 of the first clip you sent, the lorry is driving on the right towards the camera, while the car is driving on the right away from the camera. This would indicate to me that the makers got it wrong! Yoo hoo!. One for the nerds! Now, if Janus can prove to me that the Swedes got that little continuity feature correct, then I will accept his view of Scandinavian superiority over the Yanks.

  14. Boadicea :

    No shame at all in enjoying a thoroughly good story! I haven’t seen the original film or the remake – so can’t help with your misery… :-)

    Boadicea, well there was a period when every man and his dog were reading the books and I was determined not to be swept away by the general hysteria. Once while on holiday in Italy a picked up a copy while staying with my brother, but after a few pages got fed up with what struck me as very amateurish writing. I became irritated by the frequent reference to ‘dot-com’ industries.(Though to be fair, probably very relevant at the time of writing, but in 2010, was old hat). My sister said too that she had given up as she found it tedious,(I suspect a little bit of snobbery there too) and so I decided it was not worth it. However, that did not stop me from recommending it to a heavily pregnant friend who was flying to Mauritius and would have nothing to do other than lie by the pool and read for 10 days. When she returned, she insisted I read them which I did and, as I have said, thoroughly enjoyed.

  15. I downloaded the unabridged audiobook (audible.com) of this book for Mrs J and I to listen to whilst driving to Scotland. We gave up on it because it is complete tripe.

  16. One scene that was particularly shocking was the rape. I find it extraordinary that any man could find any sexual satisfaction under such circumstances or even get aroused sufficiently to perform the act in the first place. Obviously violent rape of this nature does occur far, far too often, so I am not denying that some men do get turned on in that way. But, reading about the phenomenon is one thing, seeing it portrayed quite so graphically is another. It really brings it home. Incidentally, I did not find the scene gratuitous, but felt it was essential to the story and I believe serves a valid purpose to demonstrate that while the majority of men are decent, loving and caring, some people are capable of behaving abominably and how others suffer for it. Don’t let my comments put you off.

  17. Whilst I can’t comment on either books or films, I admire your attention to detail – it is just the sort of thing that irritates me – in almost every film there’s a bit where I shout at the screen! Oh to be a continuity assistant!

    Incidentally, as you raise it in #19, rape isn’t about sexual gratification, it is about gaining power and control, so that is probably why you can’t see the satisfaction. Rapist don’t do it for pleasure.

    Mind you, the depths of human depravity do mean there are many acts in which satisfaction is received by both parties that would seen alien to most!

  18. Hi Jazz, not sure why I had to approve your comment. Sorry about that. Sorry too that you did not enjoy the book. I wonder if the narrator had anything to do with your dislike. Some people’s voices are just too irritating to listen to for any length of time. I made the mistake of downloading ‘Something New’ by P G Wodehouse. Well, it was free, wasn’t it. My goodness the speaker, an American lady had the just about the most awful voice I have ever heard. Why she thought that people would want to listen to her is beyond me.


    Click on the “Stream audiobook and download chapters” play button > just to hear a sample, and then ask yourself if death by a 1,000 cuts would not be a preferable alternative.

  19. Hi Cuprum, I understand about what you say about rape. I have heard it before, but I am not entirely convinced. You see, in order to perform the act, the man has to be sexually aroused and it is that which really puzzles me. If it was just about power and control, there are plenty of other ways of enforcing it, simple physical violence being the most obvious. But it is the sexual excitement on the part of the perpetrator that I find completely baffling. It is not just a switch that most people can turn on at will. Yes of course there will always be a few people who get aroused by weird stuff, but given the high levels of rape around the world, especially here in SA, the predilection seems far more widespread than I would have thought possible. Sex is about attraction, not rejection.

  20. Boadicea :


    I’ve often needed sub-titles on some of your posts

    They are much improved of late though, aren’t they!

    How kind!

    Ref. #15, I submit that I never claimed Scandinavian superiority over the Yanks, did I? It was aSwede wot rote the books, and I saw the Swedish film. Btw James Bond is English.

  21. Sipu ref #22 I’m sure we could divert to a whole new blog on this topic. Not wanting to disagree with you, but as neither of us are psychologists or psycho-analyists I doubt we could cover the subject with any clarity. I would merely suggest that the power and control over the subject causes the arousal, hence being able to perform. I too am always surprised how much there is of it around the world in places of conflict, but such is hu’man’ nature is suppose. Sadly.

    Back to the Bond theme (as I believe the lead character is played by the current incumbent), I watched Johnny English Reborn over the weekend. Supposedly a Bond spoof with Rowan Atkinson in the lead role. I cannot recommend it to anyone! Simply dreadful and a waste of his comic genius.

    Should my dislike of tattoo’d women stop me from watching the film that started this discussion? I have heard that the books are a good read.

  22. Now, now Janus, don’t get sensitive.

    Cuprum, you are quite right. We should leave it to others.

    I think as far as Rowan Atkinson is concerned, the trailers are about as good as it gets. They may generate a laugh or two, but the films are dire. He should stick to skits. (Try and say that 10 times quickly.)

    I am with you on tattoos. Not only do I think they are ugly, it is what they say about the owner that upsets me more. I get so disappointed when I meet a girl who wears one. It is so short sighted. Back to the instant gratification theme!

    That being said, don’t be put off the film though I would recommend reading the books first. They are able to give you more background about the girl that the film does not have time to include. I imagine the film works on its own, but you might get more out of it having read the books.

    As for Daniel Craig, I think he was quite convincing in the role. Apparently he went through a tough regime trying to lose all the muscle he had built up for the Bond movies so that he looked like a flabby journalist. Once filming stopped he had to start working out again for the next 007 flick.

  23. Tattoos? Don’t get me started. If they’re so cool, why doesn’t Julia have one? (Shock, horror. Maybe she does! But where?)

  24. Ok, read the books in English, of course. I was hooked after reading the first.

    I have the original Swedish DVDs of all three; a Christmas present. I only watched ten minutes before my DVD player broke. I’m sure that I had a choice between sub-titles and a dubbed English soundtrack though. When I get round to watching, I’ll let you know what I thought of it.

    I would really recommend that you read the books before watching the film.

  25. Araminta

    There was no dubbed English track on the DVD set that I bought.

    I agree – read the books first. No film could possibly provide the detail that the books provide.

  26. Araminta :

    Hi Boadicea.

    Very odd, and I can completely understand the problem with sub-titles; I couldn’t cope either.

    Good to know some else here has problems with sub-titles!

  27. Just for clarification, most of the time Hollywood English is is being translated into the mother tongue of the translator. Sometimes they misunderstand what is being said and that is half the fun.


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