Sunday, January 25, 2009

Let the Right One In (2008)

(Swedish: Låt den rätte komma in),

So I downloaded the Swedish movie Let the Right One In the other day, along with the English script so I could understand what they were saying, as my Swedish grandparents didn't really pass on the DNA of the learnt language.
The title comes from the John Ajvide Lindqvist novel of the same name, stemming from the Morrissey song of similar name, used here because traditionally, vampires cannot come into a room uninvited, and also useful as a caution to let the right one into your life.
Oskar is our little blond 12-year old protagonist, taking us through the frozen backdrop of mid-80's Stockholm. His parents are divorced, he is bullied at school for no reason-- "piggy pig" he is taunted with, though he is skinny. (This one scene, theese little twirps lash over his hvevos and legs with a whip. Not fun.) On a playground outside the apartment where he lives with his mom, (the playground's basically a metal box, it reminded me of this pic) one night he meets Eli, a new neighbor, and apparently, a little 12 year old just like him.
So this Eli--we realize quite early on because we aint stoopid--is a vampire. The man "she" lives with is obviated in the novel as being a pedophile, a former teacher who was fired and his house burnt down. He is shown as collecting blood from some men he catches, a gift for Eli. You see, they have this sort of trade-off (again obviated in the novel, not so much in the movie). Eli treats killing for food as just a fact of life, but it also makes little Eli sad:( So, this old dude "she" lives with kills for "her" and in exchange, he gets to molest her! See--? Every one's happy. Not to treat molesting lightly, but don't worry he gets a bitty punishment of his own, which is kinda sad actually.
So old dude is getting old, and forgetful, and he gets caught killing and does something really painful to disfigure/hide his identity so he and subsequently Eli wont be caught. (The effects on this when you finally see the end result is GLOOOOORIOUS!)

The film shows bleak shots of concrete apartment houses and black streets, snot dripping like tears down little children's faces (I noted this numerous times, my maternal instinct kept wanting to wipe it away from them--and then I punched myself in the family jewels to made it stop) grey rooms, sparse furniture. So when colour is used--bright red blood, deep blue sky, you get all tingly and pleased inside because you're eyes were missing the visual treat. And that's not to say it ISN'T a visual treat. the actual dialogue is pretty sparse too, lending more on atmosphere and your own observation of the affection between the two youngsters to carry it along. (Forget about the side plot with some old ugly villagers. Seriously. That shit was boring. Do. Not. Want.)
Yes there is a vampire in it, but the movie is more about a yonug boy and his friend, and their love then it is about all the glittery Hollywood shit that they toss in craggy fistfulls at vampire movies these days.
Eli and Oskar have feelings for eachother--I guess. I more see that from Oskar's side as he hugs Eli when Eli barfs after he gives "her" candy. One night Eli even crawls into bed with Oskar (no sex, you perves) and he asks her to be his GF--cuuuuteee! Even though "she" tells Oskar "Uhm... I'm not a girl".
The two work out a morse-code, tapping things like GOOD LUCK and KISS to eachother trough the walls, and eventually at the end shot, through a coffin. But this is one movie with an acutally good ending one I haven't seen in years. Bad people you hate get all mutilated up (satisfying) and the two lovers are together.
Now for those confusing moments, where Eli keeps telling Oskar that "she" isn't a girl--"she's" right! Several hundred years before, Eli was Elias, and some dumb-ass noble with too much money and not enough hugs orders little boys brought to his house, and he chops off their junk. All of it. Off. All the junk. Smooth like a plastic doll. Normal castration is just taking off the balls, cuz you need to keep the spout to urinate, you know. So this dude chopped all that happy stuff off and drank the blood from it, somehow making Eli a vampire. (Side note--that really sucks. If there's anything that would make you want to kill yourself, it's having all your spiddly-winks and pudding-toddy chopped away. But this poor vampire can't die, really. Sads. But I guess they don't really need to urinate anymore --right?)
So I understand the director Tomas Alfredson couldn't really go into the past or the pedophillia much, but he could have just had some dialogue about that, just Eli mentioning it to Oskar, that "she" and the old dude 'she' lives with have an arrangement, and also "she" could have mentioned something along the lines of "a long time ago, a very bad man cut me up" in explanation of "her" own genderlessness. So that explains why we see a quick shot of a long scar over Eli's pubic bone when he/she/it's changing clothes.

NOT ANOTHER REMAKE!!!!! But yes, some anus-less idiot in the United States (I disown him living in my country, may he burn to death) Matt Reeves--who made that vomit and corpse-exudate fart-fuck mess called 'Cloverfield'-- will attempt to slice and slaughter, grind and pummel any majic and beauty out of this story and make it more "accessable" to the English. Yes, more accesable. Because we all too stooooopid to undowstand what goin on in dem foriegn films, right? ugh. It will be accessable as a pipe of pureed mash they force-feed geese. Great. another wonderful film so soon after it's debut will now be shown in a heart-grippingly bad remake. I bet they will pull the actors for the chidlren right off a pouty-lipped Sears Ad line up, play it up so they are older and can have sex, splash more gore inot the scenes, more boobies, and more pedohpilla cuz we Americans love that kinds junk right? No we dont want to think. dont make us think. just stick that tube of purreed mash down my throat and spell out the whole plot for me cuz me too dumb.


Nik said...

Wow I feel bad for those child actors and what they had to go through. Heres to hoping they dont end up like Corey Heim or Corey F.

Thanks for the tip Seg. Currently getting it. Any movie that might make me punch myself in the family jewels is always welcome.

castration. LMAO! Now how can I ever top this post?

Sergei Itzam Coiot said...

Dont feel bad for the actors, they =the good. well, the Swedish actors, that is. there was no child abuse shown in the movie.