Forget the wimpy vampires in “Twilight” who glitter in the sunlight and recite poetry. “Let Me In’s” young blood-drinker burns alive in the sun and would rather rip your throat out than hear Shakespeare. But, c’mon guys, she’s hungry.
“Let Me In” isn’t a true horror film, but a drama with a dash of suspense and gore. The main relationship is between a lonely and neglected 12-year-old boy named Owen and a young female vampire, Abby, who looks about the same age.
A key thing to remember is not to be fooled by the hype that it’s a remake of the Swedish film “Let the Right One In.” “Let Me In” is an American version of the novel “Let the Right One In.” While both movies take a different view on the book, they are both incredible.
It’s not fair to compare the Swedish version to the American one, so I’ll steer clear of that. What I will say is that “Let the Right One In” is dubbed and, like many foreign films, certain meanings can be lost in the translation.
However, I enjoyed “Let Me In” slightly better than the Swedish version. And that has a lot to do with the actors.
Actress Chloë Moretz, who plays the vampire Abby, is mesmerizing on-screen. Abby draws you into her world. A vampire may have the enviable ability of living forever, but she’s crushed by every loss she suffers. Abby is just as much a victim of her circumstances, as she is a monster of the night.
The film also adds a surprising amount of realism by examining how lost Owen is. He lives with an alcoholic mother and has been abandoned by his father. The school — bullying Owen suffers is beyond brutal and was harder to watch than the vampire attacks.
Abby and Owen’s deep connection is full of heart-breaking innocence and puppy-dog love. They are there for each other in a way that no one else in their lives is. This unique bond shows a different side of Abby, revealing that she is not an indiscriminant killer. It’s impossible to hate her. And extremely hard to fear her.
The title of the movie refers to the fact that Abby has to be invited into a home. This is a common vampire theme. But, unlike those vampires, I’d let this sweetheart in, after she’s fed.