I caught a screening of the Swedish vampire film Let the Right One In (Lat den ratte komma in) on Wednesday, and came away feeling not only that it was one of the strongest films of the genre I had seen, but that globally, there is a stark realism in storytelling that’s missing in many U.S. films. Even with genre fare such as this, the sale is made by the feeling that these kids could be your kids. It’s a realism that doesn’t get sidetracked by superstars or budgets or special effects or salability. It’s just about good ole’ fashioned storytelling and craft – in this case by director Tomas Alfredson.
Let the Right One In is as much a tale of friendship and the absolute fear of connecting with people; and the dark and lonely places people sometimes find themselves caught in, as it is about the fear of the dark and the desolate places that one can be devoured by desperate beasts looking to satisfy their urges. Eli (played by newcomer Lina Leandersson) develops into one the most enigmatic vampire figures in cinematic history. The film opens Friday, October 24th 2008 in Los Angeles and New York, although there are screenings prior to that, most notably at The Pioneer Theater in downtown New York.
As the film opens, a fragile, anxious 12-year-old named Oskar (Kare Hedebrant) is regularly bullied by his stronger classmates but never strikes back. The lonely boy’s wish for a friend seems to come true when he meets Eli, also 12, who moves in next door to him with her father. A pale, serious young girl, she only comes out at night and doesn’t seem affected by the freezing temperatures.
Coinciding with Eli’s arrival is a series of inexplicable disappearances and murders. One man is found tied to a tree, another frozen in the lake, a woman bitten in the neck. Blood seems to be the common denominator – and for an introverted boy like Oskar, who is fascinated by gruesome stories, it doesn’t take long before he figures out that Eli is a vampire. But by now a subtle romance has blossomed between Oskar and Eli, and she gives him the strength to fight back against his aggressors. Oskar becomes increasingly aware of the tragic, inhuman dimension of Eli’s plight, but cannot bring himself to forsake her. Frozen forever in a twelve-year-old’s body, with all the burgeoning feelings and confused emotions of a young adolescent, Eli knows that she can only continue to live if she keeps on moving. But when Oskar faces his darkest hour, Eli returns to defend him the only way she can.
Let the Right One In is based on the best-selling novel by John Ajvide Lindqvist. The rights to the novel were recently purchased by J.J. Abrams’ production company, for a U.S. remake.
The trailer has just been posted to Apple’s Quicktime Trailer website RIGHT HERE.
Find out more about the film at its U.S. website www.lettherightoneinmovie.com.
Let the Right One In is the inaugural release in Magnet’s Six Shooter Film Series, a series of six films highlighting the vanguard of genre cinema from around the globe.Five films will follow over the coming months, and info on each film is below.
Director: Nacho Vigalondo
A man who travels accidentally back to the past and meets himself there. A naked girl in the midst of the forest. A weird guy with his face covered by a pink bandage. A disquieting mansion on the top of a hill. All of them pieces of an unpredictable jigsaw puzzle where terror, drama and suspense will lead to an unthinkable sort of crime. But who’s the murderer and who’s the victim?
Check out the Timecrimes trailer below.
Donkey Punch (UK)
Director: Ollie Blackburn
After meeting at a nightclub in a Mediterranean resort, seven young adults decide to continue partying aboard a luxury yacht in the middle of the ocean. When one of them dies in a freak accident the others argue about what to do, leading to a ruthless fight for survival.
Check out the Donkey Punch trailer below.
Director: Hal Haberman
Michael Rapaport plays a lonely metermaid who has a psychotic reaction to his medication and becomes convinced he’s a superhero. Les is a kind-hearted and soft-spoken man who loves reading comic books. He’s the type of guy who most people walk by on the street without even noticing; in essence, he’s completely average and virtually invisible.
However, everything changes for Les the day he is accepted into an experimental drug study for a new and exciting anti-depressant, Specioprin Hydrochloride. As Les begins to take the drugs an unexpected side effect occurs – he begins to develop special powers: the ability to levitate, to read peoples’ minds, and even walk through walls.
Faced with the dilemma of how best to utilize his new “powers,” the answer seems obvious to Les. He puts together a homemade superhero suit and hits the streets to fight crime and protect the world from the forces of evil.
Surveillance video soon exposes Les and his actions to the public via television news and therefore brings him to the attention of the businessmen developing the drug. Worried about the bad publicity Les is bringing to their new anti-depressant, they attempt to put an end to his superhero antics before too much damage is done. However, in typical comic book fashion, Les sees the men from the drug company as his evil arch nemeses – The Suits – men who want him to join them in their evil plan to use Special to create an army of unstoppable assassins. Les refuses to play ball.
CLICK HERE to see the poster premiere for Special, over at Cinematical.
Check out the Special film trailer below.
Big Man Japan (Dai-Nipponjin) (Japan)
Director: Hitoshi Matsumoto
A comedy about an eccentric man who lives alone in a decrepit house in Tokyo, who periodically transforms into a giant, and defends Japan by battling monsters that turn up and destroy buildings.
Check out the Big Man Japan trailer below.
Eden Log (France)
Director: Franck Vestiel
A man wakes up naked in a dark cave. He’s cold, covered in mud, and has no idea what brought him here, nor what happened to the dead man next to him. Around him, darkness and ruins of an ancient underground world haunt him. He knows he must escape, as a wild menacing creature pursues him. To find out who he is, he will have to get to the surface through a network of tunnels in a cemetary-like world that’s been abandoned by a mysterious organization called Eden Log.
Check out the Eden Log trailer below.