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Let Me In
  • Composed by Michael Giacchino
  • Varese Sarabande 302 067 053 2 / 2010 / 78:20

If there’s one thing Hollywood studios know for sure, it’s that audiences will not see films whose titles contain five syllables, so remarkable creativity was on display for the remake of the acclaimed Swedish vampire film Let the Right One In by removing two whole syllables from the title, for it to become Let Me In.   It’s from Cloverfield directed Matt Reeves, who this time gets Michael Giacchino to do rather more – a lot, lot more – than just write music for the end titles.  This is his first horror film (though there are some who found Mission: Impossible III pretty horrific) – and his music very much resembles some of what he was doing for several years on Lost.  The trouble is, it resembles the dullest aspects of what he was doing for several years on Lost.

The score consists largely of a series of variations on a descending two-note piano motif, which at first sounds spooky, with an appropriate sense of beauty and mystery.  The problem is that once you’ve listened to it virtually non-stop for 78 minutes, you would willingly shoot anyone who suggested having to hear it ever again.  There are some variants – the choir is a nice addition and is used well, and the brief diversion into a beautiful pastoral sound in “New Day on an Old Lake” is outstanding.  There is a longer-lined theme (given a beautiful arrangement for the end titles) but even that sounds very similar to Lost and in fact the “Labour of Love” theme from Star Trek.  I have little doubt that this music could have been arranged into a very satisfying, probably four-star album.  Unfortunately that didn’t happen, and this album is pretty much unlistenable.  Not enough happens here, there’s far too much repetition of essentially the same thing over and over again; and instead of presenting the music in the best possible way, the album producers have presented it in the worst possible way and it’s the least satisfying of Giacchino’s career so far.  **

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  1. Mastadge (Reply) on Sunday 31 October, 2010 at 16:55

    To be fair, the title was shortened by the publishing industry first; the original English translation was called Let Me In since publishers knew that readers prefer shorter titles. They were original going to call it Let Her In but Lindqvist (the author) suggested Let Me In instead.

    As far as the album, I agree it’s too long, but I don’t find it as unlistenable as you do.

  2. Michael (Reply) on Monday 1 November, 2010 at 10:36

    Yeah I gave this a listen last week and you couldn’t pay me to listen to it again. I’m sure there’s some good music in there but I’m not prepared yet to go through 78 minutes of this score again to find it. I’ll listen to it later in the year when I have forgotten how much I didn’t enjoy it the first time around.