Nayha Jehangir Khan has written a brilliant review of Let Me In for Danka Pakistan, the online cultural event guide!
Everyday characters, small town archetypes the characters of Let Me In are regular no-bodies faced with traumatic interconnected relationships and tough decisions in order to survive. Each character has an introductory build up, leading to their character progression, ultimately transforming them to a nuclear moment.
The stage direction is naturalistic for the space might be tightly casted but is constantly moving and had an intrinsic rhythm through out the duration of the play. The characters shop, gossip, romance, preach and eventually have their fates decided all in that same setting. Arming a familiar location such as a grocery store with story telling, grand narratives, folklore and an insight into the human condition is an unconventional theatrical stance for the Islamabad theater scene. Apart from the scene changes where regular blackouts are used the play incorporates moments of pause, the stage literally blinks creating a different pace, these transitory elements not only allow for a psychological insight into the characters but contrasts the aggressive gruesome out bursts with a breath of serenity. Stage-ques merging with one another allowed fight scenes to match the sounds created by the crashing and throwing of each other on set. The set was presented as another central character among the cast. It is evident that the pre-production and designing of lights, sound, music and over all stage direction work was an integral part of Let Me In. The characters are inseparable, erratic and yet balanced with all of these elements of the play.
As a child and now having been trained in Lighting design, I shiver with excitement for radioactive coloured lighting, usually found on the covers of “make your own ending” horror story books. Let Me In makes use of such familiar horror iconography to ground itself in an age long legacy of such story telling. For me the nuclear moment of the play had to be Butt’s closing scene, his stage presence showed not only Butt in his true element but was reminiscent of the quintessential grand evil we sink our horror hungry teeth into.