Let The Right One In [Blu-ray]
Blu-ray ALL - America - Magnolia Home Entertainment
Review written by and copyright: Adam Palcher & Noor Razzak (14th April 2009).
The Film

The most recent directorial masterpiece by Tomas Alfredson is one with high expectations. Receiving a 98% on the critic website Rotten Tomatoes, my eagerness drew me to originally see this in theatres to check out this unconventional vampire movie from Alfredson.

The story revolves around a bullied 12-year-old boy named Osker (Kåre Hedebrant), who seems to be fascinated by the idea of love and revenge, but too shy to pursue either. He meets the girl who just moved in next-door, named Eli (Lina Leandersson), and falls for her. Unbeknownst to him, Eli and her family are vampires.

Like I said, this is not your average vampire movie, it actually can be viewed more as a young coming of age love story, except one of the love interest is a vampire. Eli, definitely has issues that road block their love, but the story portrays the young couple no less in love than two humans.

The two kids that play the main characters in this film, Kåre Hedebrant and Lina Leandersson, do an unbelievable job of acting and hold your interest and hope for this unlikely duo the whole film. There is some absolutely breathtaking cinematography and ideas that do not get overused in this desolate, snowy town. Some scenes may chill you to the bone with their originality and presentation of brutality. Though this is not a very scary film, it provides the elements of a story with triumph and love while still hinging on the intense nature of the vampire way of life, but never banking on it.

My only complaint now watching the DVD compared to the theatrical presentation is that the subtitles seem to be “dumbed down” a little bit for the English-speaking viewer. This was distracting, since I’ve seen it before, and took away a little of the emotion and intensity of the original version.

If you’re looking for a fast paced, high budget vampire thriller, go watch "Twilight" (2008). This movie is the opposite; deliberately slow in it’s pacing it provides a well-crafted, unconventional twist on the genre that was a pleasure to see. At first the pacing bothered me a bit, but after the credits rolled and the more I thought about the story and brutal scenes of the film, the more I loved it. A highly recommended flick that helps meld a new version of the vampire genre.

Video

Presented in the film's original theatrical ratio of 2.35:1 this image is delivered onto Blu-ray in high-definition 1080p 24/fps and has been mastered using VC-1 compression. Magnolia has released this film on a 25GB disc, with a majority of the disc's space going towards the presentation of the film. The film's muted colors are realized with incredible accuracy here, the dark palette of the film looks good in HD from the skin tones to the deep blacks of the night scenes. There's little grain and the overall image is sharp and detailed. The print is clean from dirt, specks, as well as compression related problems. It's a top notch image that looks great. No complaints here.

Audio

There are two audio tracks presented here in the film's original Swedish DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mastered at 48kHz/24-bit as well as an English dub also in DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mastered at 48kHz/24-bit. For the purposes of the review I chose to view the film with its original Swedish audio. The mix is rich and displays wonderful depth and range. The film is very moody and the sound mix immerses the viewer with its ambient sounds, score and use of directional environmental effects. The dialogue is clear and distortion free and the overall mix displays great range from the low subtle moments to the more robust elements of the film's score.
There are subtitles in English, English for the hearing impaired and Spanish.

Extras

Mahnolia has released this film under their banner "Magnet" and has included the same extras as seen on the DVD release, this includes a series of deleted scenes, a featurette, a photo gallery and a theatrical poster gallery.

A total of 4 deleted scenes from the film with a total run time of 5 minutes and 48 seconds. The scenes are named “Bullies”, “Eli & Osker Exterior Scene” “Virginia Vomits”, and “Eli & Osker Interior Scene”. These scenes were pretty interesting I’m guessing we’re kept out to keep the pacing of the film.

A "Behind-the-Scenes" featurette about the making of the film. For the short 7 minute and 32 second this featurette explores a lot that I was interested in about the film. We get one interview of the director Alfredson explaining his intentions of the movie and what his characters are struggling through and what makes this film such an original vision. They also get into the final scene of brutality and how that was pulled off. Pretty cool stuff!

Photo gallery includes 21 images of off and on set photos of the cast.

Finally the theatrical poster gallery features 6 images, similar to the photo gallery above but showing original posters for the film from all around the world.

Overall

The Film: A+ Video: A+ Audio: A+ Extras: C+ Overall: A-

 


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