I didn't go to church growing up. Looking back, I think it left me unprepared for dealing with evil in my early adolescence, which I also think is why LMI resonated with me so strongly back then. Ironically, Reeves partially inverts the theme, demonstrating how religion was used to externalize evil and internally overlook it. Owen's mother intoxicated herself on televised sermons while neglecting her son. The "notion that evil is somehow other, outside us," Reeves said, left Owen "very confused about what that says about him." He also described Abby was an "unleashed" version of Owen. When she kills the detective, he doesn't just back away in fear -- he steps in to help her.
An interesting touch I noticed was Owen's eyes lighting up the way Abby's did when he spied on his neighbors. LTROI's cinematography is more beautiful, showing off Sweden's natural landscape while retaining an appropriately cold atmosphere for the story. LMI features red and gold more prominently, respectively at certain indoor (Owen's apartment) and outdoor locations (the apartment complex and school). The latter aspect seems to stem from unfiltered light pollution. You can see it in a production shot of the film:
Ironically, when I first saw LMI, my room was dimly lit the same way. (Small yellow lamp, red curtains.) Whether or not intentional, I think the film's lighting suits the story's critique of suburbanism. It also has its own type of beauty, especially in the snowfall. The ambulance scene did an amazing job of showcasing New Mexico's landscape.
The soundtrack was best in LTROI -- it was subtle yet effectively conveyed the film's mood while maintaining an organic theme. I used to fall asleep to some of its songs. LMI's soundtrack tended to be overbearing sometimes. Its melodies weren't as consistent and some weren't memorable, but others were done really well. The tracks for the intro, the horror scenes, and especially the ending were really good.