Sunday, May 24, 2009

Let the Right One In: Grade B

Let the Right One In (2008)
Kåre Hedebrant, Lina Leandersson; Director Tomas Alfredson. (Swedish, Dubbed)

Oskar is a 12 year old, bullied terribly at school. He meets Eli, a 12 year old girl who moves into his apartment building. They strike up a friendship, but soon it becomes apparent that she is a vampire. Oskar is horrified but being so alone, he likes her anyway. She likes him well enough to avoid biting him, and she encourages him to strike back at the boys who bully him. These two themes are explored separately, the bullying and the vampire life, in a charming relationship story that seems quite ordinary except for the awkward detail that Eli must kill someone every day. This counts as a horror film for sure -- plenty of blood -- but the story is so gentle in its own way that it takes you by surprise. The final scene was obviously an afterthought designed to avoid ending on a completely down note, but it is not satisfactory. Too bad, because 20 minutes could easily have been pulled out of the rest to allow for a properly developed ending. Another complaint is that the voice actors were terrible. Animations can get good voice actors, why are they not available for dubbing? Maybe it was a cost constraint. Fortunately, this is a quiet film with not much dialog, so the bad dubbing is tolerable. I would much rather have enjoyed the Swedish language and read subtitles. Despite some obvious logical loopholes in the story, this is a well-made and surprisingly enjoyable movie.

1 comment:

  1. I loved this definately need to hunt out an original version with subtitles as the beautiful Swedish language really adds to the atmosphere and charm of the film..P