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Vampire movie done right

October 8, 2010

At long last, there is a new vampire movie that returns the vampire myth to its old themes of despair and isolation. “Let Me In” does what “Twilight” failed to do: create a love relationship between a human and a vampire without ruining the lore and completely taking away what truly defines a vampire.

“Let Me In” is a remake of the 2008 Swedish film “Let the Right One In.” The film centers around Owen, an emotionally-isolated 12 year old boy who is constantly bullied at school, and Abby, a young girl who moves in next door to Owen. Abby is played by Chloe Moretz, who recently starred as Hit-Girl in “Kick-Ass.”

The movie did a fantastic job of showing Owen and Abby’s relationship grow. Both lead hard and lonely lives and soon take solace in one another. Owen needs her so he can have some form of compassion in his life because he is not getting any from his alcoholic mother, while Abby needs him to hold on to her human characteristics. The moments these two spend together are interesting and touching.

However, what truly makes the movie excellent is how it still portrays the hardships and bloodlust that goes with being a vampire and requiring blood to survive. After all, being a vampire is a curse and this movie clearly emphasizes that. This prevents the film from resembling the awfulness that is “Twilight.”

As Owen learns of what Abby really is and witnesses feed, he becomes faced with the choice of ending their friendship and losing the only person who cares for him, or accepting her for what she truly is. The audience is able to see Owen’s character change as his innocence melts away and he realizes just how much he cares for Abby. Abby is vicious to those she does not know and when she had to feed, but she is kind and extremely protective towards those she likes.

I thought the movie was good because it took a slightly new route on the vampire lore, instead of completely throwing it away like some other movies. For instance, one well-known bit of vampire lore is that a vampire cannot enter a house unless they are invited in. This is usually done where there is some invisible barrier that physically stops vampires from entering. However, in “Let Me In,” Abby is able to enter Owen’s house, but begins bleeding from all over her body until Owen invites her.

There is also a scene where a vampire is accidently placed in sunlight and simply explodes in a fantastic display of fire. In the theater, people stared at me when I screamed, “Now that is what happens when a vampire is in the sun; not that sparkling crap!”

I also enjoyed the movie because it reminded me slightly of “Interview with a Vampire” because it focused on a 12-year old vampire girl simply surviving. When I think back of recent vampire films, I think of action films, such as “Underworld,” or horror, such as “30 Days of Night” where a band of humans try to survive a vampire attack.

“Let Me In” instead focuses on a simple vampire with no explained history or backstory. Through taking this approach, Abby is much more mysterious and interesting as a character because so little is known about her. Instead of focusing on action, “Let Me In” instead focuses on the darker and depressing atmosphere of the older vampire films.

The movie had a lot of memorable scenes, such as when Abby walks up covered in blood and hugs Owen from behind. Another amazing scene was when Abby unleashes all of her vampire rage and protects Owen from a group of bullies.

All in all, “Let Me In” is an excellent film and I encourage anyone who wishes to see a truly excellent vampire film. This is a real vampire love story.

DEREK KEIST
Features Editor

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