Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Film #9: Let The Right One In (2008)

Vampires are sexy. So says pop culture.
And who can blame 'em!
Vampires have milk-white, cold, dead flesh. They indiscriminately drink warm blood out of man and beast with snarled teeth. And at moments notice they can turn into a rabid, hairy, squealing creature. Huh. On second thought, the RHDP thinks pop culture got this one wrong.

But vampires are sexy to Oskar, the 12-year-old lead character in the 2008 Danish film "Let the Right One In." However, we think Oskar would find a two headed goat sexy if it nuzzled his crotch right. You see, Oskar is sort of an attention starved sad sack.
First off, he lives in a crappy Swedish apartment complex, which is two fallen roof shingles away from Cabrini-Green status. Perpetually bullied at school, wimpy Oskar passes his after-school hours with fantasies of gutting his tormentors with a hunting knife. One night while practicing his stabbing technique on an innocent front lawn tree, a mysterious girl named Eli appears behind him. She's impressed by his knife work, and the two strike up a convo. Seems Eli and her "father" are new in town, and just moved in next door to Oskar. A few chance meetings turn into planned dates, and soon little Oskar is sharing blood-stained kisses with his new steady ghoul-friend. Poor Oskar, can't catch a break. He must have known his first chance at scoring would come with an asterisk.

As Eli eventually points out, she is not your average girl-next-door, but a vampire responsible for the various deaths occurring in town. (I've heard of a girl draining a fella's life force, but geez!) Each day, as the body count rises, so does Oskar blood temperature for Eli. But is the vixen merely getting him hot because she wants a home cooked warm meal? Oskar has a decision to make: continue to cohort with the hungry, murderous Eli, or turn his back on his one true friend and lover. Vampy action abounds in the 2008 frightfest "Let the Right One In."

The Low-Down:
America, you have a thing or two to learn from those damn foreigners. We have been getting SCHOOLED by overseas horror filmmakers for the last ten years. "Let the Right One In" sinks that point in with two sharp fangs. Original, touching, and shock inducing, this Swedish film gave the RHDP a reason to once again embrace the recently soiled name of the vampire (And let me tell ya, did this one ever drink deep from our necks).

Who would have thought that an art film production and horror premise would mix so well? Each step of this film felt precisely constructed, deliberate -- and assembled into a solid paved plot walkway that any viewer could happily skip across.
The cinematography was stunning. Each shot was like a demented Swedish postcard. Red blood never looked so beautiful applied to snow. In fact, the scenery and cinematography were so soothing that when something truly horrific did happen, the shock seemed that much more satisfying. It was like awaking from a soft dream of snuggling with kittens only to find yourself actually in a gutter rubbing AIDS infected rats on across your face.

And when it came to shock, this one didn't disappoint. Some vampire movies make their death scenes all pussified and romantic. This one went right for the jugular (YES, PUN!), with seemingly harmless Eli catching prey off guard and just savagely rocking the mofos. Throw in a little violent spontaneous combustion, a head twisted backwards, a man melting his face with acid, and some mind-bending vampiric anatomical curiosities (trust us, it’s messed up!), and this one might finally scare some sense into all those Twitards. Vampires should be scary, and "Let the Right One In" brings the genre back to its roots. Sorry, Britney, Edward may seem sexy, but he should be much more bite than babe.

RHDP Ratings:
C-Rating: 4.8
Chris Dimick declares: "I can't go against Bela Lugosi and his 1931 portrayal of Dracula. That is a classic, and incomparable to any film. But take that out of the running, and "Let The Right One In" is the best vampire movie I have ever seen. Vampire movies are usually all up in your grill with their historical subtext and sexiness. This movie goes for a more realistic take on the legend, and doesn't dwell that much in the lore. A very fresh approach.
Not much really happens plot wise in this movie. This would usually make for an annoying snail's pace. But this is a work of subtly, a gasp that starts soft and eventually grows into a blood dispelling scream. Subtlety is where most horror movies falter, which is why it is so refreshing to view a film that excels in this area. Life, and especially love, are a series of moments stacked atop each other until the mind sums those parts into an experience or relationship. This film perfectly portrays that. It's the story of love and attraction, how a million little moments can build into a deep bond with a person -- human or vampire. Brick by brick, the young kids' relationship grows. And scene by scene, I fell in love with this no-holds-barred, smart flick."

N-Rating: 4.9
Nick Rich declares: "I was captivated from the first shot, darkness with snow sweeping in. When thinking back on this film I can’t come up with a single thing I didn’t like (hence the 4.9). There were some negative feelings when I thought of certain parts, but they were because the characters made me feel that way – not because the film was lacking. This film has everything I love in a horror movie: realism (you felt like there was a documentary crew following the Norwegian townsfolk around, and everyone looked average or below), stillness (the establishing shots were amazing in this film, you felt like you were living with the characters in the barren winter landscape), subtly (the relationships between all the characters were not overly defined, which stimulated the brain as it watched), creativity (everyone knows the story of the vampire, but this film made me feel as if I had only heard rumors and was now truly encountering them) and shocking moments (there were multiple times where I was genuinely caught off guard and could only screech “Ohh!” in response). This film was a pleasure to watch, a feast for the eyes that works its way into the mind. The Skinny: check this film out if you secretly love art house films but are too ashamed to tell anyone you love art house films; it will not disappoint."

Quote of the Viewing:
[Eli lies down naked in bed with Oskar, and soon tells him again that she is "not a girl."]
Chris: "When your girlfriend tells you she isn't a girl, and she is laying behind your naked ass, shouldn't you be concerned?"
Nick: "Oskar, he is a troubled boy, Chris. Remember, he sleeps with a knife under his bed."
Nick: "And he wears whitey-tighties... in freezing Sweden. Yep...issues."

People the RDHP Would be Most Scared to See as 12-year-olds FOREVER:
- Regis Philbin. Can you imagine a world with his random outbursts coming from a pre-pubescent voice for all time? We can… and it’s terrifying!
- Albert Einstein
- Edgar Allen Poe. It’s creepy to see a mustache on a 12-year-old, and depressed child vampires are, well… depressing.
- John and Kate Gosselin's kids. If they remained kids forever, it'd mean a forever of their parents on TV. Shudder!
- Al Sharpton. He is creepy no matter what age.

Reasons the RDHP Would Wear Whitey-Tighties:
- To avert a global apocalypse
- If wearing them would allow us to time travel
- Age related “body changes”
- To scare off attacking Norsemen. Try it, it totally works.
- To enhance our bulges:

Sorry Mom, but you started us wearing them!

RDHP Vampire Hall of Fame:

Bela Lugosi

Christopher Lee

Dick Cheney

Kirsten Dunst

Whores in "From Dusk Till Dawn"

Spencer Pratt

1 comment:

  1. beautiful people and great artists,good web.