Låt den rätte komma in
A work of sheer brilliance
by Adam Frazier
the Right One In" is an endearing coming-of-age story that is so unique
and exceptional it defies classification. In this Swedish film, adapted
from John Ajvide Lindqvist's bestselling novel, director Tomas
Alfredson masterfully weaves a story of falling in love that is both
horrifying and tender.
12-year-old Oskar (Kare Hedebrant) is a
victim of relentless bullying. When we're first introduced to young
Oskar, he is alone in his bedroom, dressed only in his underwear.
Immediately the insecurities that rule Oskar's everyday life shine
through his porcelain skin. The innocence and vulnerability of
Hedebrant's performance is a tour-de-force, completely authentic and
believable in every matter of speaking.
Lina Leandersson plays
Eli, a 12-year-old girl who moves into Oskar's housing complex outside
Stockholm. The two meet one snowy afternoon at a jungle gym in the
complex's courtyard. Eli is a sad, lonely creature who Oskar
immediately latches on to as his one and only friend. After an initial
period of awkward timidity, a tender affection is formed between the
At this point, you might be wondering what the film's title
refers to, being as this is just a sweet tale of young, Swedish love.
"Let the Right One In" is actually a play on the myth that a vampire
cannot enter a house unless invited by the owner.
Vampires? Did I hear that right? Yes, you certainly did. Tomas
Alfredson's unique little film is a love story wrapped in the trappings
of traditional vampire lore. Now, I realize vampire romanticism isn't
exactly a new concept, in fact it's more popular than ever.
From Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles
series, to Stephenie Meyer's young adult Twilight
series and "True Blood," HBO's latest hit show based on The Southern Vampire Mysteries
books by Charlaine Harris, it's hard to find a vampire doing anything BUT making a little romance these days.
fairly cliché idea, fueled by themes of forbidden love, is given a
breath of fresh air in "Let the Right One In." Having Oskar and Eli at
the young, innocent age of 12 gives the story a whole new spin. These
characters are lonely, unsure of what real love is - all they can do is
open their hearts to one another and hope it makes sense. There is no
seduction or manipulation - just sweet adoration for one another.
The main difference between "Let the Right One In" and the romances in Twlight
or Interview with the Vampire
is simple. Those tales are filled with attractive, seductive creatures
that make starry-eyed females fall head-over-heels immediately. They
beg to be bitten, and dream of living eternally in bliss with their
supernatural lovers - but not in Alfredson's picture. Eli is tormented
by her affliction and we are shown time and time again its burden on
her life. Oskar genuinely loves her and pities her situation, and will
do anything to protect her - even after witnessing firsthand the foul,
grotesque things she must do to survive.
"Let the Right One In"
is one of the finest films I've ever had the pleasure of watching. It's
a beautiful, serene experience that will chill you to the bone while
warming your heart with those fuzzy feelings of young love.