I've been looking forward to seeing this film for ages, it has consistently had amazing reviews and something different was promised than the usual vampire movie. I'm pleased to report that I wasn't disappointed.
This film centres around a lonely 12 year old by Oskar who begins a friendship with newly moved in neighbour, Eli a girl who looks 12 but is in fact a much older vampire.
This film is so much more than the very short synopsis that I have written. It is a film that deals with many deep issues; isolation, love, romance, bullying, fear, hate, murder, theft and even grooming (this occurs in a completely unexpected way). In fact all of the themes in this film are given a twist and presented in a way that makes you look at the issues in a totally different light.
The friendship and budding romance between Oskar and Eli is handled sensitively and with tenderness, in this film a brush of a hand speaks volumes in the silent snow covered backdrop. Oskar has an innocent unquestioning acceptance of Eli's strange behaviour; she insists that she's not a girl she's 'something else' and she appears at windows that are several floors up and then states, 'I flew' and he doesn't even ask, 'how?'. This relationship is vital to the film as these fragile and damaged characters slowly bond and begin to need each other (the young actors are amazing).
This is a film that visually is isolated and stark, the setting is a snow covered Swedish housing complex in the 1980's, grim, drab, rundown, ugly and neutral. The snow visually creates a blank canvas in which the two central characters exist. This is also a film that is shot through with visceral red and the pain of Oskar's struggle to be accepted at school, images that will stay with me for some time.
Go and see it before Hollywood remakes it.
Director: Tomas Alfredson
Oskar – KÃ¥re Hedebrant
Eli – Lina Leandersson
Adapted from the book – Let the Right One In by John-Aivide Lindqvist
Read more at: Nerve Curve