Area53 banner which is a collection of lots of scattered pictures of things the blogger likes, from music artists and films to TV shows.


From the Past

Films on the to-do list

  • Armageddon Time
  • Black Widow
  • Chimes at Midnight
  • The Killing of a Sacred Deer
  • Last Christmas
  • Remember Sunday
  • Shazam! 2
  • Thor: Love and Thunder
  • Spy Guys

Låt den rätte komma in – Let the Right One In (2008)

Film review: Låt den rätte komma in [Let the Right One In] (2008), directed by Tomas Alfredson, written by John Ajvide Lindqvist

Currently keeping up the 222nd spot on the IMDb Top 250 list, it’s Swedish vampire flick Låt den rätte komma in, or Let the Right One In in English. I believe it had a Hollywood remake using that title as well.

Either way, it’s set in the early 1980s some time, in one of the suburbs of Stockholm. Oskar (Kåre Hedebrant) is a child of about 12 or so, who is bullied in school. One cold winter’s eve, when he’s in the playground on the estate where he lives, a strange girl of a similar age, Eli (Lina Leandersson) appears. They start talking, and over the course of the film, a friendship is forged between the two.

There’s just one thing: Eli, as it turns out, is a vampire. I don’t think it was made clear how she was turned, but her father/familiar/ghoul (?) Håkan (Per Ragnar) is keeping her with a supply of blood, by basically butchering people in the woods.

The film also features Ika Nord (from Ika i rutan, a very bizarre children’s programme I grew up watching) as Virginia, with Karin Bergquist and Henrik Dahl as Oskar’s parents.

The important thing to note with this film is that it’s not about vampires going around killing innocent people and sucking their blood. Nor do they sparkle – thank goodness. It’s about a friendship between two children, both with their own set of issues. One is bullied in school, the other one … well, she can’t go to school full stop, as daylight would burn her to a crisp.

I guess that’s why the film really works. Sure, darkness is ever present (most of it seems to happen in the evening, for obvious reasons), and there are scenes of bullying that are difficult to watch, but there’s not a lot of blood or gore – some, yes, you can’t really get away from it in a vampire film, but the feel is more raw, honest and real than most vampire films. Vampires in suburbia, just trying to get by.

It’s a little bit odd, it’s low key and quiet, but it’s good, and it sucks you in. Very good performances all around, but particularly from Hedebrant and Leandersson. Who says you need to be an adult to be a good actor?

Låt den rätte komma in is in Swedish but subtitled in English, and I think if it’s possible, you should watch it in original language rather than a dub, because if a film is dubbed, it tends to lose a lot of the feel that you get from the original language. (Cutsey Disney cartoons, for the most part, less so. I actually vastly prefer the Swedish dub of Robin Hood over the original English!) I just think you’d lose out if you watched it dubbed into a different language, that’s all.

Good film. A bit slow at times, perhaps, but well made.

4 out of 5 ice skates.


An easily distracted and over-excited introvert who never learns to go to bed at a reasonable time. Enjoys traveling (when there's not a plague on), and taking photos of European architecture. Cares for cats, good coffee and Boardwalk Empire. A child of her time, she did media studies in school and still can't decide what she wants to be when she grows up.

2 thoughts on “Låt den rätte komma in – Let the Right One In (2008)

  1. The relationship between Eli and Håkan is properly explained in the book 🙂 We also get to know a lot more about Håkan’s past and why he ended up with Eli in the first place. Their relationship is quite… disturbing, which is probably the reason why they’ve left out most of it in the film. The American version did the same thing. Too creepy to display on screen, apparently >:)

  2. Oh? *goes to find synopsis, then returns* Oh, I see. Yes, I can see how that would be seen as too disturbing! That’s indeed a … rather dark turn of events. :O

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