Tag Archives: John Ajvide Lindqvist

Let who in?

It being an American film and it being a film in English, which is a proper language, Let Me In will be so much better than Let the Right One In. And whereas I didn’t actually mean what I just said, wouldn’t it have been more honest to openly state – somewhere – that this new film they are desperately trying to flog for free this Halloween, is in fact a new version of the Swedish original?

The Guardian emailed me with an offer to see Let Me In for free on Halloween morning, but other than it not being available in my backwater of Manchester, I can think of more fun ways to spend Halloween than sitting through another bloodbath. Fitting, though.

It was only as I read the blurb that I realised this was the improved American version of John Ajvide Lindqvist’s book, and went looking on IMdB to see what they said. They don’t mention the original either, except so much in passing that you won’t notice.

I can’t resist copying the reply to the question ‘The original was so good…why are they remaking this?’

‘According to producer Simon Oakes: “…the story was so great, so beautiful, that it should be seen by a bigger audience. So I was always saying to myself, people in Manhattan have seen it, guys like you [genre journalists/fans] because it’s in your wheelhouse, in New York, in Chicago, in Chelsea, in Notting Hill, in London but no one in Glasgow or Edinburgh or Bristol or Idaho or Pittsburgh has seen this film. It’s a story that needs to be seen by a wider audience. Then it came down to [the question], how do you achieve that? By paying homage to the original.”‘

Homage. That’s always good.

And as I write this Son is physically in Edinburgh, and he came with me to see the film, so in one fell swoop I have proved Simon Oakes wrong. In case he wants to know.

Here’s to people in Pittsburgh and Glasgow who need a better bloodbath!

Let the Right One In

If you can stomach (and I really don’t mean that literally) the blood at the beginning of Tomas Alfredson’s film, Let the Right One In, you’re probably OK for the rest of the film. I took Son with me for support if this horror film should get too much for me, forgetting that he faints faster at the sight of blood than I do. So, apart from that…

It’s a good thing the rest of the world has us Swedes to make long and slow and somewhat weird films, so that others don’t. This film wasn’t too long; it’s Swedish, so is meant to be like that. Director Tomas Alfredson is the son of a very funny man, so it’s obvious he has to do something less funny, like horror. 

Lina Leandersson in Let the Right One In

I prefer vampires to bullies. I think. There’s some serious bullying in this film. It looks a little ‘mild’ to start with, but gets quite ‘interesting’ as you go along. Don’t underestimate those angelic looking Swedes next time.

The witch was taken aback to find the formerly young and handsome Per Ragnar cast as an older, quietly menacing type. He was not a vampire, but far scarier than his young bloodsucking companion. Nice as she was, though, would you set your friendly vampire on your bullies?

Set in the 1980s in a Stockholm suburb, this was a lovely period piece, where they got most of the retro aspects right. The colours of the school bags I’m not sure about, and the train was far too old, albeit charming. This wasn’t a terribly vegetarian film, unless watching it brings vegetarian-ness on to unsuspecting carnivores. Veggie Son looked perky afterwards as he inquired if I was ready for lunch.I was.

And subtitle-translator-person: No rattlesnakes in Sweden. Huggorm means adder. Just so you know.