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Let Me In


Stars: Chloe Grace Moretz, Kodi Smit McPhee, Richard Jenkins, Elias Koteas, Dylan Minette

Director: Matt Reeves

With vampires being all the rage just now, it's perhaps not surprising that Hollywood decided to remake the Swedish horror Let the Right One In. This is pretty much a scene-for-scene copy, although it seems a little slower than the original, and has more heightened sound effects. Otherwise, much is as before, so the freshness has obviously gone if you saw the original.

The action has been relocated to New Mexico, where 12-year-old Owen (Smit-McPhee), a loner and 'Peeping Tom', is bullied at school by the usual leering group. He does make friends with a new neighbour, Abby (Moretz), who is also 12. But she is, as fans of the Swedish film will know, a vampire.

She has a familiar (Jenkins), who kills for her and collects blood to sustain her. He's getting tired and sloppy and spills most of his latest collection, forcing Abby to forage for herself. These episodes are dwelt on with much relish by writer-director Reeves, losing some of the spookiness of the original.

Meanwhile, Owen hits back at the bullies, egged on by Abby, felling the leader (Minette) with a pole. And all the while a detective (Koteas) is hunting the perpetrator of the spate of gory murders.

This doesn't bear much thinking about (wouldn't the vampire girl have been apprehended ages before?), but the acting is good and well thought-out, and the scene where a vampirised woman bursts into flames is brilliantly realised.

David Quinlan

USA 2010. UK Distributor: Icon (Paramount/Hammer). Technicolor.
116 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 3, Drugs 0, Swearing 1.

Review date: 04 Nov 2010