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Tribeca Film Fest, Pt. 2!

05.02.2008

THE 2008 TRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL AITH EDITION!

Last year was my first experience with the Tribeca Film Festival, for this site or otherwise. A festival featuring over 150 films can be a little daunting to navigate, especially in my hometown New York, where so many theaters are scattered across the jittery city. Luckily, last year and this one, I had an easy mission: seek out the most intriguing, buzz-heavy horror films the fest had to offer. I was able to catch only four, but I think the most important four in the line-up - and thankfully I lived to tell the tale.

LET THE RIGHT ONE IN
Directed by Tomas Alfredson
Written by John Ajvide Lindqvist (based on his novel)
Starring Kare Hedebrant, Lina Leandersson, Per Ragnar, and Henrik Dahl.

Tomas Alfredson's sensitive, twisted coming-of-age fairy tale LET THE RIGHT ONE IN is the kind of horror movie we love to see from time to time, one that doesn't wear its genre on its sleeve or fill the screen with hellish imagery just because it can. Oh don't worry, it does, and when it does it's potent. But this is more in the vein of the quieter Guillermo Del Toro films like THE DEVIL'S BACKBONE - where supernatural chills fit snugly next to the all too real horrors of adolescence. It's also very "Swedish" if you can dig that.

Oskar is the prototypical bullied boy - friendless, isolated, not without charm and imagination. He spends his free time playing with a knife, although he's not the type to freak out. The kind of kid who just seems weird even though he really isn't... One day, he meets his new neighbor: a 12 year old girl named Eli, who seems weird because she is weird. She's a vampire, something that Oskar gathers slowly but surely (although we've locked onto it early on, as her "father" has a tendency to kidnap strangers and bleed them to death for his daughter). This isn't a deal breaker by any means. The two outsiders develop a tentative bond, a happy pseudo-sensual friendship that, of course, can't move smoothly along. Aside from her bloodlust, there's her unhinged guardian coming closer and closer to getting found out. Meanwhile, a man mourning the murder of a friend seeks answers - and revenge.

Read more of Arrow in the Head's coverage of the Tribeca Film Festival here!

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