Låt den rätte komma in (Let the Right One In)
Release Date: October 24, 2008
Director: Tomas Alfredson
Stars: Kåre Hedebrant, Lina Leandersson, Per Ragnar
Runtime: 115 min
Tagline: Eli is 12 years old. She’s been 12 for over 200 years and, she just moved in next door.
[Mr. Christie, you make good cookies] Sweden, you make great films.
Oskar is a troubled and lonely twelve-year old boy who is bullied constantly at school, and is yet to fight back. When a mysterious young girl, Eli, moves in next door to him in his apartment block – he hopes he has found a companion to confide in. Also, coinciding with the girl moving in next door, a series of murders come to the surface; with the victims being hanged upside down and being drained of their blood. Once Oskar discovers that Eli is really a “young” vampire, he finds love and revenge in her – and their young love both blossoms and dwindles, and must try to overcome the fact of how different they may seem to be on the outside; all set on the beautiful landscape of a cold 1982 winter in a suburb of Stockholm, Sweden.
One thing about this film that can be greatly appreciated (or loved) is that it’s so much more than just your average vampire film, it is also a great and tender display of adolescent love.
This [film] was my first foreign film experience and I really enjoyed it. It’s a very impressive Swedish film about a young boy who has been bullied and misunderstood all of his life, all the while his parents are going through a divorce. It well blends the genres of drama, horror, and romance in a great and stylish way. There isn’t a whole lot of horror but the elements that are there are very great and often spooky and extremely eerie. I just really appreciated the profound effect it has for a vampire film. Let the Right One In is also very compelling and never let go of my attention. I really appreciate it because it is as beautiful as it is horrifying and thrilling. It all seems like a wonderful adaptation from a book of the same name.
For those of you who don’t want to watch a vampire flick in Swedish; Hollywood remade it and renamed it Let Me In, and it’s actually a pretty great substitution – with a performance from Chloë Grace Moretz that I prefer more than this girl’s performance (maybe familiarity plays a part in that statement) ; but the actress of this film does really perform well, as does the actor who portrays Oskar.
The film contains one of the finest wimp vs. bully moments in cinema, which is near on the great caliber as Straw Dogs.
The film stars Kåre Hedebrant as Oskar, Lina Leandersson as the “young” Eli, and Per Ragnar as Håkan, a man who wants to find and kill Eli to avenge the deaths of some friends.
It’s a film that is worth checking out, but some of it is rather disturbing and often gory (it’s to be expected as it deals with vampires), and it is definitely not the feel-good film of 2008 (it is both depressing during certain scenes and also occasionally [sort of] brought me a happy feeling in others). Let the Right One In is a film that is parts compelling, horrifying, fascinating, beautiful and entertaining; and is about as must-see as vampire films go. It is my favourite vampire film, as it is both nearly flawless (some of it’s not perfectly paced) and great – and the only vampire flick I’ve seen that comes even close to being this great is its American remake. It’s a dark and entertaining experience, that is a very memorable story, as it is a uniquely terrifying coming-of-age tale.