the background of the story, only hinted in book and film, is the nine years old boy, John, visiting his father at the countryside (heard that one before?).
The story is a snapshot, only a few pages long, it doesnt take more time reading it than watching the film.
The film is good, and pretty accurate. Until it approaches the end, where it unfortunately fails IMO.
In the book, John wakes up in the box at night, hearing movements in the distance. Pitch dark - he doesnt switch the flashlight on. He can hear something large approaching, about the size of a horse. He can hear its breath and its steps coming closer, and he can hear it is walking on two legs. The being stops outside the box, John feeling its presence. Then he (as in the film) reach out his hand, putting it on the cardboard wall (like Oskar's hand on the window). The being outside the box then strokes its hand(?) gentle over the cardboard, stopping right opposite John's. As in the film, you get the impression that the entity knows John is in there. Then it slowly leaves, and he can hear the steps as it walks away. The story ends at this point, with the words "Det hadde lämnat honom." (It had left him).
When I read the story first time, I got the association of a gentle giant or a troll paying him a visit (maybe because there is another short story about trolls in Paper Walls). Unforunately, the film fails in recreating the atmosphere from the book. Suddenly the being is there, and just as suddenly it is gone. The film uses a human hand on the outside to indicate this is some kind of a giant, but sorry, it doesn't come across to me. The end is not JAL either.
@ withinfocus: Correct, but the English translation is promised to be published "soon".
For the heart life is simple. It beats as long as it can.
- Karl Ove Knausgård