Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Book to Film Review: Let Me In

About the film
Let Me In is a 2010 romantic horror film that was based on the Swedish film Let The Right One In and the book of the same name. The film has a rating of 15 due to violence and language and it has a run time of 116 minutes. 

Twelve year old Owen is a loner. He has no friends, gets bullied at school and has to put up with his divorced mother and the nightly phone calls from his father. He doesn't have much of a life apart from looking out of his window with a telescope. One night, he spots a young girl walking in the snow with no shoes on, entering the apartment building with an older man which he instantly assumes is her father. Upon meeting the young girl, Abby, Owen can see that she is just like him - shy, lonely and awkward. Although the two strike up a strange friendship, Owen has no idea that Abby is a child vampire, constantly stuck at twelve years old, needing blood every single night. 

When people start dying, Abby's 'father' in particular, a policeman is determined to find out what is going on but this could mean disaster for Abby and her lifestyle. 

What I thought
Let Me In wasn't a film I was too bothered about watching due to it being an American version of something else. However, my boyfriend bought me it after liking it himself. We have pretty similar taste in films so I was willing to give it a shot. 

As the film began to get going (after the weird opening) it quickly started to remind me of a really creepy version of About A Boy, mainly due to one of the main characters. Owen is a very unfortunate looking 12 year old boy who is a complete loner. The reason for comparing this with About A Boy is because Owen, played by Kodi Smit-McPhee looks so much like Nicholas Hoult did in that film. It soon becomes apparent that not only is Owen a loner but also gets bullied badly at school. I couldn't help but to feel sorry for Owen immediately. 

Abby, the other main characters, is mentioned in the opening scenes but you don't get to find out who she is until she moves into the same apartment building, next door in fact, to Owen. Most people will know ChloĆ« Moretz, who plays Abby, for her role in Kick Ass. In comparison, these two roles are completely different. Abby is shy and extremely reserved, not really saying much to begin with and keeping very much to herself. While Owen, although not having any friends, tries to talk to her a lot, she doesn't respond well to begin with. Mortez plays Abby extremely well and while it is different to the role she is best known for now, she is still incredible. It's quite hard to think of her as being so young. 

Both characters begin to grow and develop as soon as they meet each other, yet still staying true to who they are. Neither character changes an awful lot but it is more about the impact they have on each other. Owen and Abby are extremely curious about each other and getting to know each other was one thing about the film I really loved. Their friendship is awkward and strange but then what else could it ever have been when one of them is a child vampire? Still, the story of their friendship is heart-warming and different. 

After being told that this was not really a horror, and it isn't, I wasn't expecting to be scared or jump at all. I was both at times. There were a couple of scenes that I was not expecting and these made me jump a hell of a lot but as there weren't that many like this, it made them scarier and the shock factor a lot higher than if they had been used more often. I was also not expecting for me to get quite emotional at this film - so much so that I cried a little bit. Let Me In made me feel a range of emotions that I just wasn't prepared for with a horror film but that is not a bad thing. It's great when a film can really surprise you and not be what you think it will. 

While the story and acting were great, there were some things that bugged me. Mostly, the visuals were fantastic. As this film is set in the '80s, everything looks extremely dated and it felt very authentic. However, when Abby shows that she is a vampire is where things weren't that great. Basic effects were done quite well, giving Abby scary white eyes and seeing blood all around her mouth. Really, it was when Abby began to move like a vampire that I had problems. There are a few scenes of Abby scaling buildings or climbing trees at enhanced speed but these scenes just looked fake. I think they either could have been shot a lot better or just done differently to make a better vampire out of Abby. 

While I haven't seen the original film yet or read the book (which I do have), I am looking forward to seeing what the differences are and which I like more. I wasn't expecting to like this film as much as I did at all.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed this one too but I have heard the sweedish version is better so I do want to watch that one. I may check the book out too!