Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Film Review With Sam Larner

After a thrilling debut with his review of 'The Hangover', Sam returns with another exclusive review for the Painter's Chronicle website, this time reviewing; 'Let The Right One In'

Let The Right One In

Occasionally a film will be so beautiful that it will make up for the generic Hollywood duds throughout the rest of the year. Let the Right one In could be described simply as a Swedish, Vampire, Romantic, Horror.

Let The Right One In is a remarkable piece of film making from Swedish director Tomas Alfredson, it follows the lives of two young Swedes in the Cold War era. It is set in a suburb of Stockholm and both live in large non-descript council buildings. Oskar is a 12 year old boy who is bullied at school and keeps a scrapbook of deaths in the Stockholm area. He is incredibly lonely and often spends evenings in the courtyard of the box of flats pretending to stab his bullies with his knife. It is on one of these nights that he meets a girl who has just moved in next door called Eli. She is mysterious and is initially unkind to Oskar. The film revolves around the innocent romance between these two characters, even after Oskar discovers that Eli is a vampire and must kill to stay alive.

The film has an incredibly dark feeling and aesthetic. It is very short on dialogue however every shot appears like a great Constable or a Cezanne landscape. The objects aren’t beautiful for example the woods have a distinct industrial feel about them and the blocks of flats are just concrete beasts however they are viewed like great cathedrals.

The film is Swedish and so does have subtitles but don’t let that put you off. The dialogue is fairly sparse and often quite simple. If you are a bit behind the Vampire revolution that is taking over our screens then I suggest that if you only see one Vampire film then it is this. I can’t stress enough the awe inspiring brilliance that emanates from the screen when this is on.

Both lead actors do brilliant jobs in what I would imagine are quite challenging roles and in some parts you feel sorry for Kåre Hedebrant (Oskar) because you feel he must’ve been bullied at some point to produce such a realistic performance.

Leave what you may think about foreign films and go and rent this absolute masterpiece of modern cinema. It is a truly genre defying work.


  1. I totally agree about this film. A very good piece. Nice to see reviews of a broad spectrum of films. Have you ever seen Persepolis?

  2. No I haven't but I'll stick it on my "to see list" and have a go at getting round to reviewing. Thanks for the comments.

  3. Persepolis is a good film, but it didn't make as big an impression on me as the graphic novel, although the two are very similar, the main difference being that the book goes in to more detail. Both get my sincere recommendation!