From the juiced-box and the soundtrack: David Bowie – Let’s Dance
[Press 'Play' to put on your red shoes and dance the blues]
Ramblings: I’m In
Final Proof: 4 Shots
You know how you get drunk with a little girl on her 21st birthday? You promise yourself you won’t get drunk and fall in love and do whatever she asks and at the outset she tells you you’re not at all her type so you relax for an evening of drinking with a hot 21-year-old and there are no strings attached or wrapped around her finger, yet. Unfortunately for you she’s kind of dark and creepy because she senses that’s what you like best about her and the mystery is part of her charm because she knows exactly what it takes to bewitch you and she knows where your jugular beats so she enchants you by playing your game, drinking your drinks, saying what she knows you want her to say and the night ages far faster than she does as she sinks into your eyes, deeper with every drink and she lets slip a secret with each sip and each confession is more sinister than the last. She keeps feeding you more and more lines until you’re hooked long before you realize she was playing you but by then it’s too late because she’s caught you like the sucker fish you are and you wind up buying all her drinks, giving her your last cigarette and promising to help her hide a body. The last thing that you learn that night is young girls are vampires that charm you til you’re blind and then they suck you dry. Abby in Let Me In is exactly like that little girl.
i might as well be all up front with y’all and let you know i hesitated pouring a full 4th shot for this ’cause i was tempted to stop at 3½, but what can i say, i’m a tender bartender who’s a little buzzed and there’s a reason people like a drunk barkeep. Plus i’m a big fan of Chloë Grace Moretz who i tagged at the very beginning as someone to watch and she kicked so much ass in Kick Ass that i can afford to cut her a little slack on this one. Besides, i really did enjoy this movie a lot, so it’s not like i’m cheating or anything by rounding up.
One of the main problems i had with this was the beginning. It starts off with a flash forward—and if you haven’t heard me rant about what a poor excuse for story telling that is then you don’t want me to start now because i can go on all night about that shit—but even worse than the flash forward is that it’s an arty flash forward. There’s all kinds of closeups on obscure objects and fuzzy shots of you don’t know the hell what and weird angles and everything so you spend a couple minutes trying to remember if you’re drunk or hungover or what. Then you realize the film was a remake of a Swish (and i am the only one who knows Swiss and Swedish are the same?) movie and based on a Swish book so it’s pro’lly the director getting all foreign on your ass but hell, the people are speaking English so Matt Reeves shoulda made the movie American style.
Not that he screwed everything up and far from it or i wouldn’t have given Let Me In 4 shots. There’s something that distinguishes this particular vampire movie from the rest of the coven of vampire movies flying across the screens. Like the look and feel of Let Me In rocks, because believe you me there’s so much atmosphere in this film you can feel it and it feels authentic. It goes deeper than just your average horror film and concentrates more on that creepy, dark ambiance which really comes across like a puddle of absinthe spilling off the bar and onto your lap. You ever see Ang Lee’s The Ice Storm? There’s a lot more similarity between Let Me In and that movie than any Twi-Harder movie you can come up with.
One of the things that reminded me of a good movie like The Ice Storm was that Let Me In was set in the 80s. God knows why they chose the 80s when they coulda chosen a good decade but there you go. How do you make a movie look authentic? With the music of course. i’ll give you the blow by blow down below in the Rock and Roll section but let me just say two words to you: Culture Club. i know. Then there was some other 80s stuff i’m not smart enough to pay attention to so it’s a good thing i’m engaged to a woman as intellectual as Miss Demeanor who pointed out the haricuts weren’t very 80s because guys back then had hair parted in the middle and feathered and the guys in this movie had Bieber cuts. Still, there were some nice details like Rubik’s Cube, Ms PacMan being just released and the Now & Later candies that i remember so well i can almost taste them. More than that, though, was the overall look of the film felt like 25 years ago. The colors weren’t as bright back then, things weren’t as sharp as they are now and that’s the way they looked here. It was like Reeves made this movie on film he found from that time.
Before we move on, i’d love to get all rebel on your ass and separate myself from the rest of the reviewers by staking my own claim but i’m afraid i gotta tread on the same ground others have already done before me and no doubt tons better. What i’m babbling about is i gotta give a deep bow to the two main actors here who are just crazy talented for any freaking age. Kodi Smit-McPhee (Owen in the movie) is more talented at 14 than most of the actors at 40. And Chloë Grace Moretz…what else can i say about Chloë Grace that i haven’t already? Chloë Grace Moretz is the Meryl Streep of 13-year-olds. Speaking of how old they both aren’t, i gotta card their little butts here. Nothing age inappropriate going on in the Bar None, yo.
Buzz Kills (Watch Out for Spoilers)
[Press 'Play' for what we had to use for rock in the 80s: Blue Öyster Cult - Burnin' For You]
Sex: 2 Shots
OK, so there wasn’t a whole lot of sex going on here but at least there was a little flash of boob (and what a beautiful breast it was) and i’m so tired of seeing your freaking American movies with costumes that look like they were designed by the Amish.
An exception to this rule is the only woman we really get to see in the flesh, Owen’s neighbor Virginia (played lovely-ly by the charming Sasha Barrese – 29). We get to see her and her significant other sitting on the sofa, her in her robe and her friend slides his hand inside and her breast slips out through the slit.
Here’s the face attached to that lovely vision.
There’s a couple shots more of Sasha rattling around in my drawers down below.
You know who else gets to see the boob? Little Owen (Kodi Smit-McPhee) because he’s quite the voyeur. There’s a kind of Rear Window vibe going on in Let Me In as far as Owen is concerned.
Today’s Silken Butterfly is the amazing Cara Buono (39) who did a great job as Owen’s Mother. It was a hard role for her because Matt Reeves (who’s still the director i was talking about up there somewhere) decided to make Owen seem more alone / independent /cut-off by never showing his mother’s face. It’s all that much harder for us, the viewers, when you consider this is what we’re missing out on.
There’s more single shot of her in my drawers as well. Just keep strolling down til you find them.
Drink: 2 Shots
You wanna know why i’m being so nice giving Let Me In a couple shots when there wasn’t all that much drinking here? i hope so because i’m gonna tell you anyway. The reason is that the only drinking we get here is Owen’s mom, but she’s drinking in every shot we see her in. Like the first time we see her is at dinner and she’s pouring a glass and then, later in the movie she’s drinking it more and more and then in the last scene she’s in, she’s passed out on the sofa and there’s an empty glass on the table. Nicely done and as the booze plays a big part in defining her character, i’mma give the drink two solid shots.
Rock & Roll: 2 Shots
This was another tricky call that was made all that much easier by the fact that the previous sections had 2 shots so it was easier for me to upload the image. The thing that was hard to peg here as far as the rock went was that the movie was set in the 80s, which was after rock had died and before punk resurrected it. So we had the Bowie, which i like, as well as the BOC and even a little Greg Kihn Band that i’ll serve up right here for you on the juice-box.
The Greg Kihn Band – The Break Up Song
Here’s the other songs they subjected us to:
- David Bowie – Let’s Dance
- The Vapors – Turning Japanese
- Culture Club – Do You Really Want To Hurt Me
- Culture Club – Time (Clock Of The Heart)
- Blue Öyster Cult – Burnin’ For You
- Freur – Doot Doot
- Greg Kihn Band – Breakup Song
Not only was the music not really rock, the horror wasn’t either. Not that this is a bad thing. You don’t need a lot of scare you jumping crap or gross Saw shit to make a movie scary. Let Me In did just fine with the dark and creepy ambiance. Which isn’t rock, though.
Boring Technical Crap
John Ajvide Lindqvist – Novel & Screenplay Låt den rätte komma in
Matt Reeves – Screenplay
Chloë Grace Moretz – Abby
Kodi Smit-McPhee – Owen
Cara Buono – Owen’s Mother
Sasha Barrese – Virginia
Richard Jenkins – The Father
You’ll probably get a big enough kick from this off DVD as you would in the theater just so long as you don’t let yourself get distracted at home. Still, you should try to see this one either way. Moody horror, gotta love it.
Al K Hall’s Drawers
Cara Buono (39)
Sasha Barrese (29)