"More Violent Occult Vampirism"
LET ME IN, a remake of the Swedish movie, LET THE RIGHT ONE IN, follows a 12-year-old boy named Owen, a lonely social outcast that gets bullied at school, and his friendship with Abby, a mysterious 12-year-old neighbor who is also a blood-thirsty murderous vampire.
Owen’s usual day consists of going to school, getting beat up by the school bully, being unable to connect with his overly religious mother, and sitting alone eating Now-And-Later candies on the jungle gym in the courtyard of his apartment complex. Then, one day, Abby, a strange young girl who never wears shoes, and a dark, brooding man Owen assumes is Abby’s father, move next door. Soon, Owen hears yelling and fighting through the walls, and nightly, he and Abby sit on the jungle gym finally feeling connected to someone.
What Owen quickly learns is that there is something different about Abby and the tall, dark stranger. As people in the town are being mysteriously killed in ritualistic fashion, Owen suspects that his new neighbors have a dark secret. As he and Abby grow closer, Owen learns that Abby is, actually, a vampire. He also learns that the dark, brooding man is not Abby’s father, but rather he kills people and drains their blood so that Abby might feed on a nightly basis. Owen also learns that this old man has been helping Abby since he was a 12-year-old boy, much like Owen. When the old man botches a murder and dies after pouring acid on himself to keep from being identified, Abby must look to Owen to be her new helpmate in finding her nightly feedings. As a local police detective closes in on Abby’s true identity, Owen must decide if he will continue to live his life as an outcast, or if he will forsake all morality, run away with Abby and become a killer for the only person (vampire) who has ever truly accepted him.
LET ME IN is a bizarre, twisted, abhorrent movie that moves slowly and brings no ultimate entertainment satisfaction. It is billed as a horror film, but the violence is gory with no real fright-factor. Plus, the movie feels more like a strange, oddball, vampire version of Shakespeare’s classic ROMEO AND JULIET than it does a frightening journey into the dark occult world of vampirism.
No one is likeable in the movie. The characters are all disconnected, which perhaps serves to make Abby and Owen’s emotional connection more dynamic. Just the opposite happens, however. The emotional disconnection among the characters serves to cripple the movie’s impact by keeping the audience distant as well. In fact, Owen, the supposedly wretched social outcast, has sociopathic tendencies. Also, Abby is portrayed as sweet and innocent, yet she carries a sinfully seductive quality that is disturbing to see in a 12-year-old actress. The other characters, namely Owen’s mother who is overtly religious yet deeply broken, are ineffective storytelling devices in a poorly constructed narrative.
Worse, the movie has an abhorrent, occult and pagan worldview with extreme, graphic violence and no redeeming resolution. The movie also contains strong foul language, which is even more disturbing because it comes from young characters, namely the bullies at Owen’s school. There is also some unsettling salacious content, including a scene where Owen watches his neighbors through his telescope as they kiss and begin to undress and brief explicit budity. Overall, this movie is dramatically unfulfilling as well as abhorrent.
(PaPaPa, OOO, RoRoRo, C, B, AbAb, P, LLL, VVV, S, N, A, D, MMM) Very strong pagan worldview with occult themes of vampirism and police officer believes killings are part of a satanic cult as well as extreme Romantic worldview where emotion and personal desires overcome moral conscience, brief Christian elements but they never overcome the evil, Christian prayer depicted, catholic priest, man prays “Jesus, Mary and Joseph,” footage of former President Regan mentioning the “Lord Jesus Christ” and woman falls asleep on the couch with televangelist playing on the TV, and the pledge of allegiance is depicted in a school room; 18 obscenities (mostly “f” words by 12-year old bullies) and 10 profanities; extreme violence includes multiple graphic vampire attacks throughout movie with extreme blood-letting, man kills unsuspecting victims and drains their bodies of blood to give to vampire, school bully abuses teenage boy by giving him a wedgie until he urinates in his pants, teenage boy plays sociopathic games with a knife when he is alone threatening imaginary people with it, violent car crash, man pours acid on his face to keep from being identified by police, vampire girl attacks woman but fails to kill her and woman is turned into vampire and bursts into flames when she is exposed to the sun, vampire girl starts to bleed from pores because her human friend wanted to know what happens if he doesn’t invite her into his house, boy uses hard pole to whack bullying boy slicing his ear, teenager tries to drown 12-year-old boy in pool, vampire attacks bully and his friends, decapitated head and severed arm fall into pool with camera later showing dead bodies above pool; some erotic tensions between 12-year-old boy and vampire in a 12-year-old girl’s body includes vampire climbs into bed with him one night and touches his shoulder or arm, boy looks through his telescope and watches older couple kissing, and man caresses woman’s exposed breast; brief upper female nudity as woman’s left breast is seen, movie implies vampire in 12-year-old female body is nude when she crawls into bed with boy, upper male nudity of boy, shots of boy in his underwear, and kids in bathing suits at school pool; wine use; cigarette smoking in several scenes and killer knocks out a victim with a gas; and, bullying, revenge, boy steals money from his mother’s purse, lying, adults are either slobs or ineffectual, young protagonist’s parents are divorced, and young protagonist’s journey is one where he loses any moral conscience he may have had.
LET ME IN is a ham-fisted remake of an artsy Swedish horror movie. The story follows a 12-year-old boy named Owen, a lonely social outcast who gets bullied at school. One day, Abby, a strange young girl who never wears shoes, and a dark, brooding man Owen assumes is Abby’s father, move next door. As he and Abby grow closer, Owen learns Abby is actually a vampire. He also learns that the dark, brooding man is not Abby’s father, but kills people and drains their blood so Abby might feed on a nightly basis.
LET ME IN is a bizarre, twisted, abhorrent movie that moves slowly and brings no entertainment satisfaction. It is billed as a horror film, but the violence is gory with no real fright-factor. Also, the characters are unlikeable. Worse, the movie has an abhorrent, occult and pagan worldview with extreme, graphic violence and no redeeming resolution. The movie also contains strong foul language, brief explicit nudity and other salacious content. Finally, Owen’s mother is overtly religious yet deeply broken. Thus, the movie shows Christianity to be ineffectual. LET ME IN is dramatically unfulfilling as well as abhorrent.