Saturday, October 2, 2010

Watch the right remake

Let's see ...



Yup, same number of syllables.

I don't have anything super profound to say about Let Me In, the remake of 2008's Let the Right One In. But I had even less profound things to say about The Social Network, and it doesn't represent a lack of interest in seeing either of them -- in fact, quite the opposite. But sometimes, you just can't tie the release of a new film to a larger trend. And you know my tendency toward writing about new releases on Fridays.

However, I do offer you the following reasons you should check out Let Me In, which opens today:

1) Unlike certain Asian horror films that are almost as bad as their unwatchable Hollywood remakes, Tomas Alfredson's Let the Right One is a legitimately awesome movie -- perhaps my favorite vampire movie of all time. Given the way the cineplexes have been littered with vampire movies over the years, that's pretty high praise. If this version can capture even a third of that movie's awesomeness, it will be worth seeing -- even though it seems to epitomize the trend we all like to moan about, which is, the immediate repackaging of quality foreign products for the consumption of American audiences.

2) I have faith in the director. Matt Reeves directed one of the most interesting horror/monster movies of the last decade in Cloverfield, also released in 2008. Both that and Let the Right One In occupied my top 10 for that year. And even though there's no faux documentary gimmick here, and the Swedish film/novel on which it was based are very dissimilar types of source material, I trust the guy and want to see what his encore to Cloverfield will be. What's more, he's really gotten down the look of the original film, and that definitely seems to be a good thing.

3) Chloe Grace Moretz is awesome. The Kick-Ass scene stealer was by far one of the best parts of that movie, though to that movie's credit, it had a lot of best parts. Given the physicality she displayed in Kick-Ass, she seems the perfect actress to play a 10-year-old vampire.

4) Kodi Smit-McPhee has the perfect soft temperament to play her love interest. You may remember him from such films as The Road and ... well, The Road. He seems to be another perfect echo of the character in Alfredson's film.

5) Richard Jenkins is a perfect choice as the vampire's guardian. In fact, when I saw the first movie, I thought "That guy reminds me of Richard Jenkins."

6) Elias Koteas is always awesome. He plays a policeman here.

7) Cara Buono is talented, but also, cute. Catching her as my wife watches Mad Men, I have been reminded that I've had an on-again, off-again crush on her for years -- so on-again and off-again that when it's off, I sometimes forget what her name is and have to look it up on IMDB. She plays the mother of Smit-McPhee's character.

8) I read only the opening line of the review that was submitted for Let Me In on the site I write for, but it opens quite promisingly. And my site has given it four out of a possible five stars.

Now: to figure out when I might actually see it, given that I'm already using up this weekend's share of good will with my wife by going to the L.A. County Fair for most of the day on Saturday. Mmm, deep-fried butter.


The Mad Hatter said...

Posted my review this morning - 3 out of 4 stars.

This remake is well handled, and even though the pace is amped up a bit, everything still comes with a very european vision.

The kids alone are worth the price of admission - Kodi Smit McPhee especially.

Lookin' forward to reading your thoughts!

Vancetastic said...


Will definitely read your review after I've seen the movie. As you can see, I stopped myself while reading a different review -- I have this perverse fascination with knowing what people think generally, but not specifically, before seeing a movie. I guess it's not that perverse -- we all do that to some degree, if only so our own future reviews will not be biased.

Glad it's worthwhile. I love love love the original.

simoncolumb said...

i'll be watching the film myself soon enough - at the london film festival strangely enough - and it is a strange one. i think there is a little frustration in the fact that i am a fan of LET THE RIGHT ONE IN and its always nice to feel like you are in a special group of people who like a unique little film and with LET ME IN, it will open up the floodgates and everyone will be a fan.