Add to Queue 79: At last we will have our revenge

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Media | A2Q Archives | A2Q on Twitter | A2Q #79| March 10, 2009

The first time I heard about the Swedish vampire movie Let the Right One In, I ended up with a song stuck in my head. The novel the movie was based on was named after a Morrissey song, and I’ve probably listened to that song a million times over the course of my lifetime. I was perhaps predisposed to liking the film. When I did finally see the movie, what struck me first was how cold it was — not only in its icy Swedish setting, but in its contrast-heavy style and the emotional failings of some of its cast.

Calling it a “vampire movie” might give you certain expectations of the film, expectations the film is sure to disappoint. To me, the movie was much more of a coming-of-age story than a genre piece. In it, an adolescent boy named Oskar is bullied and lonely, spending his nights collecting clippings from the newspaper depicting grisly tragedies and pretending to stab his tormentors with the knife he keeps carefully hidden from his mother. One of the tragedies Oskar clips from the paper tells the story of a man who was lured into the woods and drained of his blood. Soon after, he meets his new neighbor, seemingly a pale young girl named Eli who avoids answering any questions Oskar has about her, including her age. Oskar and Eli become friends, with the shy and withdrawn Oskar becoming more and more confident as his friendship with Eli grows — confidence that leads, perhaps inevitably, to a savage act of violence.

Let the Right One In is a fantastic character piece, using the vampire mythos as a starting point to tell its story. See it now, before the already announced American remake spoils the film by making it into some kind of half-assed Twilight clone.

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The Batman Anthology hits Blu-ray, daring you to own Batman and Robin in high-definition. If you’ve been an avid reader of Add to Queue, then you already know that Batman Returns holds a special place in my heart, but even I don’t like that movie enough to buy it in a package with the Schumacher Batman films. Transporter 3 is a film that I thought I would like a lot more than I did. The highlight of the movie is the freckles sprinkled across the face of this movie’s love interest — the movie itself lacks any of the charm or the thrills of the admittedly cornball first two entries in the series. The fact that I’ve seen Transporter 3 and not Milk is somewhat embarrassing, and something I intend on rectifying soon. Classic Disney on Blu-ray is always a cause for celebration, even if the film in question, Pinocchio is not one of my favorites.

Thanks for reading Add to Queue, GameSpite’s weekly round-up of US Blu-ray release highlights. Sorry, rest of the world; region locks are the industry’s way of saying they still don’t understand the Internet. Prove yourself brave, truthful, and unselfish, and someday, you will be a real boy. Cover art courtesy of Amazon. Follow Levi Tinney on Twitter, or add him to your PSN or XBL friends list: VsRobot. You can also contact him via e-mail via levivsrobot [at] gmail [dot] com.

21 thoughts on “Add to Queue 79: At last we will have our revenge

  1. Battlefield Earth, Ghost Ship, Thir13en Ghosts — these are movies I can enjoy with a group of friends, laughing at the screen and taking drinks. But not Batman and Robin. Not Batman and Robin …

  2. Let the Right One In is such a great movie. Not flawless (it employs almost exactly one too many familiar vampire tropes), but really, really good. Like you said, it’s all about Oskar’s emotional growth, with Eli serving as his damaged, conflicted guardian angel.

  3. Saw “Let The Right One On” just a few weeks ago when it finally made it around here to the theaters. I kind of thought it was up there with the best vampire movies I’ve seen, although so many are so bad. It had that eerie beauty, almost, of something like Werner Herzog’s “Nosferatu” remake. Great stuff.

  4. Oh, and “Milk” was very deserving of the accolades. Terrific, terrific movie. I really liked the challenging “Synecdoche,” as well. I bet it has something even more to say on a second or third viewing, if you can force yourself to watch it again). It has so many levels heaped on levels it ends up like a visual palimpsest; I guess the going term these days is “meta.” As for re-viewing the movie for its depth, let me just try to be even clearer. It’s really, really funny, but it’s also tough to watch in a lot of ways I’ll save for you to find out yourself.

  5. My favorite thing about Let the Right One In is that you can’t classify it as one genre. Vampire flick? Coming-of-age story? Drama? It’s all those in one nice package.

  6. Any clue of how Pinocchio looks on Blu-Ray? I remember Parish gushing over Sleeping Beauty and I am curious if the excellent remastering of Disney classics has been sustained.

    The movie itself holds up reasonably well. The animation as a whole is amazing, especially that terrifying scene with Monstro. I think, of all the movies this week, Pinocchio would benefit the most from a proper Blu-Ray treatment.

  7. Let the Right One in was one of my favorite movies of last year. So favorite that I saw it twice in theaters, which I never do, and this is a good one to own because multiple viewings really help with the film. It has a lot of subtleties in it.

    By the way, the American remake is called “Let Me In”, which is a valid translation of the book’s title. If you can’t come up with a poster for that immediately in your mind, something’s wrong.

  8. I don’t know Swedish, but “Låt den rätte komma in” looks an awful lot like “Let the Right One In.” “Let Me In” was the result of the book’s American publisher thinking the title was too long (because America).

  9. The book and movie are named after a Morrissey song, so “Let Me In” doesn’t fit the author’s intentions, nor would changing the title of the US version of the film properly exploit the buzz that the Swedish version has received.

    If they were to change the title, it’d probably be to “Oskar and the Twilight of the Right One (In)” or something.

  10. I guess IMDB was wrong (shocking, I know) and the film IS being retitled to “Let Me In”. There goes the tiny little flame of hope I had that the remake wasn’t going to be completely pointless and stupid.

  11. One final note: The home video release of “Let the Right One In” has improved subtitles. The perfect excuse for another viewing!

  12. I guess I’m the only person on the planet who didn’t like “Let the Right One In.”

  13. I would probably buy it if they called it “Batmanthology”

    That said, I bought Gotham Knight even though they should have called that “The Batmanimatrix”

  14. Pinocchio is one of Disney’s best. I’ll be sure to chime in as soon as Netflix ships it to me.

  15. Oh my, Synecdoche is finally out. That was one of the few movies that left me stunned in my seat as the credits rolled. I don’t think there was any movie in 2008 that was quite as polarizing either, in terms of critical reception; everyone either loved it or hated it completely.

  16. I watched the first 40 minutes of “Rachel Getting Married” the other night with the GF – we wound up turning it off after that. It’s not that it’s bad, but it is one of those “franken-Oscar” movies – you can feel it vying for critical acclaim (and “adult” roles for Hathaway). Actually, my chief complaint was manifest in the opening shot – the movie tries for a handicam, “slice-of-life” feel, but everyone in it is too pretty, too hollywood, too hip, too DONE for anyone to buy into.

    There might be a worthwhile movie in there, but I can’t say as I was willing to make the trek to find out.

  17. Based on a preview for Let the Right One In, I thought “oh wow, that actually looks like a really good horror movie, despite being about a vampire.” Turns out though that no, it’s a really good sappy heartwarming coming of age story, despite being about a vampire. It really is impressive how not only does it pull off a lot of big “aww” moments despite having a fair number of shockingly violent scenes, but it’s even more impressive that those moments are actually IN those scenes.

  18. I haven’t seen the movie yet (thought it’s sitting on my coffee table at home waiting to be watched), but I was a bit disappointed by the book. It started off strong and then just kind of fell apart by the end. I hear they have changed the emphasis in some parts of the movie compared to the book, so maybe it will be a more satisfying experience. At any rate, I hope the sequence with the cats is as over the top as it was in my head.

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