Let Me In is the American Remake of Let The Right One In, a highly rated Swedish movie. I do own Let The Right One In, on Blu-Ray, just haven’t seen it yet. I kept putting it off for no reason, and meant to review/watch it before the American version, but at this point, the American version had to come now with my opening to watch it closing.
But if Hank Hill has anything to say on the matter, he’d say if a foreign film was any good, they’d remake it for America. While kind of an insult, it is kind of also a compliment. So I expected good things with this movie.
Good, probably creepy, things with this movie.
Owen (Kodi Smit-McPhee) is a small young, probably Minnesotan boy. I am guessing the state, but there is snow a lot, and these guys go out to play hockey on a lake once, and Minnesota has a lot of lakes. He is weirder, so he gets picked on by the bullies at school, lead by Kenny (Dylan Minnette). His parents are also getting divorced, so he pretty much only lives with his mom.
Then, one night, a girl, Abby (Chloe Grace Moretz) and her dad (Richard Jenkins) move in next door. Abby tells him they cannot be friends, but they do so anyway. Even talking in Morse code through the walls. The bully problem is getting worse, so she tells him to defend himself and she will help. He ends up fighting back, with a quick swing, and manages to slice Kenny’s ear open…right at the same time a body is found under the ice!
If you didn’t know, Abby and her dad are vampires. The dad character tends to go out and feed and bring back blood for Abby. When one encounter goes wrong, the dad is left badly burned and in the hospital, with the detective (Elias Koteas) very confused and suspicious of everyone. Eventually the little girl.
The ending of the movie includes Owen trying to finally, maybe, overcome the bullies, the realization of vampire-ness, escaping the detective and more. I kind of want to spoil stuff, but wont this time.
Vampires be crazy.
This (remake of a foreign movie) was so very good! It was deep and felt heartfelt the whole time. Kind of a slow paced movie, it is also equally about bullying as it is about vampires, I’d like to think. And yet everyone does so good. Owen was also the little kid in The Road, so he knows a thing or two about being in horrifying situations and not freaking the heck out.
Chloe also did a great job. Despite the fact that their characters were “going steady” eventually in the movie, and that vampires are usually all about sex, I never felt like a creepy “oh god, pedophilia?? (or necro)” thought in my head, even in one “bed” scene. Mad about quotation marks yet? Too bad. It all felt more like child curiosity, even though Abby is a lot older than Owen.
It also didn’t try to change vampire mythos. All of it seems to be based on the facts we knew growing up, which is all everyone wants. Most new vampire movies try to change them. But in this movie, sunlight is bad, holy water is bad, need blood, can’t go into residence without being invited (thus the title), and etc. Since that stuff doesn’t have to be explained, the movie can just be enjoyed and felt. Pretty much, this is like Flipped, but less for kids.
4 out of 4.