Review: Let Me In Blu-ray

Let Me In Blu-ray boxSTUDIO: Anchor Bay | DIRECTOR: Matt Reeves | CAST: Kodi Smit-McPhee, Chloe Moretz, Richard Jenkins, Elias Koteas
RELEASE DATE: 2/1/2011 | PRICE: DVD $29.98, Blu-ray $39.99
BONUSES: featurettes, deleted scenes, poster and stills gallery
SPECS: R | 115 min. | Horor thriller | 2.40:1 aspect ratio | Dolby TrueHD 5.1 audio | English, Spanish subtitles

RATINGS (out of 5 dishes): Movie | Audio | Video | Overall

Let Me In movie sceneOne of the best independent films from 2010, Let Me In is a vampire thriller, unconventional romance and coming-of-age story all rolled into one. Starring a great cast including always-good character actors Richard Jenkins (The Visitor) and Elias Koteas (Shutter Island), and the awesome young stars Chloe Moretz (Kick Ass) and Kodi Smit-McPhee (The Road), Let Me In is one of those genre movies that offers much more than horror and gore.

The film is based on the best-selling Swedish novel Lat den Ratte Komma In (Let the Right One In) by John Ajvide Lindqvist and the acclaimed foreign movie of the same name, and, as writer/director Matt Reeves points out in a couple of the special features on the Blu-ray, it takes the vampire genre to another level. The horror isn’t in the vampire, but instead in the bullies who are terrorizing Smit McPhee’s Owen. And Reeves builds up to the bullying well in the film and shoots it in an uncompromising way. We feel the pain and anger right along with Owen. And then, when we — through Owen — see that the bully is taking after his older brother, we know it will never stop.

Reeves directs the movie with as much style as David Fincher in the likes of Zodiac and Seven. The visuals are as bleak and dark as Owen’s situation, but the red blood pops off the screen, which is especially impressive in Blu-ray’s high-definition. Michael Giacchino’s eery yet beautiful original music sounds wonderful in the Blu-ray’s Dolby TrueHD 5.1 sound.

Anchor Bay Entertainment’s Blu-ray has plenty of ways for Let Me In fans to get more out of the film. The featurette “From the Inside: The Making of Let Me In” offers interviews with Reeves, the actors and others talking about the movie’s development from book to script, filming and the characters. Although everyone obviously has the utmost respect for their fellow movie-makers, the featurette’s footage is more interesting than the usual DVD making-of, covering more details and delving deeper into the motivations of the characters.

That featurette briefly looks at the film’s impressively done car crash, but another special feature, “Car Crash Sequence Step-By-Step,” details how this one-shot scene was filmed. Filmmaker wannabes as well as anyone interested in pulling back the curtain will enjoy this one.

The disc also offers “The Art of Special Effects,” in which various scenes are shown in different stages of their visual effects journey; three deleted scenes, one in which Owen — and us — see the attack that made Moretz’s Abby into a vampire; and a picture-in-picture “Dissecting Let Me In,” which plays snippets of interviews and storyboards as the film runs. A lot of the footage in this last extra is repeated in the featurettes, but there’s new stuff too.

The poster and stills gallery also is worth a look, serving up behind-the-scenes photographs that viewers can flip through while listening to the film’s wonderful score.

And there’s a commentary by Reeves, but look for that under Set Up/Audio instead of the Special Features in the menu.

 

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About Sam Clark

Sam Clark is the former Managing Editor/Online Editor of Video Business magazine. With 19 years experience in journalism, 12 in the home entertainment industry, Sam has been hooked on movies on since she saw E.T. then stared into the sky waiting to meet her own friendly alien. Thanks to her husband’s shared love of movies, Sam reviews Blu-ray discs in a true home theater, with a 118-inch screen, projector and cushy recliners with cup holders.