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The 1931 version of Dracula is a very classic movie to watch when it comes to horror films. "The look" is what caught my eye through the entire movie. Whenever Dracula is about to transform someone or give someone instructions to make someone into his follower, he expresses this very creepy, dark look on his face. It makes the character even more mysterious and haunting because the face is so dramatic, that it gives one the spooks. Bela Lugosi was a fantastic actor in this film. He portrayed this vampire so well that you would think that he is like this in reality: quite and mysterious. Dracula had very few lines in the movie, but that lack of dialogue emphasized the character so much more. Everything he said, I wanted to make sure I heard because it was very important. But, although he did not say much, his facial expressions really did show what he was feeling or thinking.
The horror film wasn't what I expected the film started off well and then just got slower and more drawn out as the movie went on. There was no music guiding the actions of what was going to happen next or lead us to think that something other than what happened was going to happen. Bela Lugosi was amazing as Dracula his voice and actions throughout the film just made the character come alive. The actor who played Renfield was hilarious his scenes were so well acted and believable and made the movie overall more enjoyable. Most of the other actors were very good and believable Mina on the other hand was a little too dramatic and there was no real transition between her emotions during most of the scenes. The movie is very different from the horror films today but it was a good example of the differences and it was a good movie to watch.
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Not exactly my favorite forror move, but still a classic. Bela Lugosi stars as Count Dracula, and his image forever is the stereotypical vampire. I thought Dwight Frye played an excellent role as slave to Dracula.The he changes his voice to sound very creepy, the way he says "Yes master". I really liked the reflected light put on his face when he is hypnotizing someone. Also when he is walking at night with the top hat and cane, he has that light on him. The thing I want from this movie is more action. Maybe have some sort of crazy scene with bats attacking Van Helsing and the other doctor when they arrived at his hidaway. I felt it just kind of stopped once they got there.
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"I never drink....wine" this line really shows what kind of vampire Bela's Dracula is like, classy, polite, and bloodthirsty. The movie is a classic by ever mean and really honors Bram Stoker's vision for his Vampire King. All the mythology of the movie is right on with the book and its depiction of Dracula and his weaknesses and powers. I very much enjoyed the ship scene were they show a model ship that by the standards of today is obviously fake but back then was quite advanced. Dracula's romp through London is quite amusing because of the fact that he is walking around, kills a girl very nonchalant, hypnotizes a random girl at a play and then continues with his business. The best part of the movie though in my eyes is Dracula's height. Most monsters are huge and imposing but Dracula is slight and so much more dangerous then any creature around.
Tod Browning's film based on Bram Stoker's "Dracula" was in interesting movie that had some bright spots, as well as disappointments. The best aspect of this film was the performance of Bela Lugosi as Count Dracula. His unique and graceful movements, speech, and mannerisms brought Dracula to life, and has been the standard since. Lugosi, along with Dwight Frye as Renfield were the films true bright spots. The film moved at a very deliberate pace that succeeded in building suspense and horror, but also made the film which was very predictable feel drawn out. While the fear this film generated in 1932 was probably strong, it was not very scary by today's standards. The attempts to make environments scary with things such as spiderwebs and creaking sounds are pedestrian by today's film standards and hard to ignore. The film while well acted, seems predictable and slow. While it is easy to appreciate this film for its historic significance and solid performances, it is difficult to characterize it as entertaining or scary.
Boring and confusing to watch like many other films of its era. "Dracula" is considered to be a classic in the horror movie genre but it is not a good film. I understand it is dated now a days and it was a major influence in film history at the time. Frankenstein has aged a lot better. The camera angles and the dialog are awkward and underproduced even for a 1930's movie. Additionally, most scenes tend to drag along becoming very uninteresting. Don't expect to be able to follow the plot easily unless you have read the novel. This film may have been terrifying to audiences when it was originally released, but today it lacks enough suspense or action to startle a toddler. Bela Lugosi get so much praise for his role as count Dracula but I think his performance sucks the whole way through and found it hard to stay awake. I would recommend this movie to someone interested in seeing the roots of vampire/horror movies but this is definitely not a film for everyone and its not to entertaining at all.
Universal's 1931 "Dracula," and specifically the count's portrayal by
Bela Lugosi has become so completely intertwined with pop culture it's
virtually impossible to say anything bad about it. The reason we all
imagine Dracula with the cowled cape, widow's peak and pale white face
is entirely thanks to this film, and that kind of iconicity should not
The film itself plays in stark contrast to what you think of when you think old movies. Whereas the Silent Era featured nothing but music, "Dracula" due to certain Hollywood notions at the dawn of the Talkie era completely avoids the use of any scoring. With nothing to enhance dramatic effect, the film becomes an exercise in creepiness.
The gingerly pacing of most of the scenes, namely Dracula's attacks, and their lack of any satisfying conclusion thanks to cutaways forced of course by censorship requirements back in the day, could warrant a good share of criticism. Without the music to build toward these turning points in the film, it's almost awkward, but there's a sense of a deliberate, artistic choice behind each slow creep toward a victim, each shot of Dracula's face and his unforgettable stare. In a two-hour film it might be an unnecessary pain, but at 75 minutes, it has a place. Director Tod Browning gets his credit there to be sure, but he's not the reason we revisit this monster movie.
"Dracula" comes from the stage adaptation of Bram Stoker's novel rather than the novel itself, specifically. In it, we follow Dracula to London as he secures the Carfax Abbey property with his recently converted servant Renfield (Dwight Frye) as he preys on young Lucy Weston (Frances Dade) and then her friend, Mina Seward (Helen Chandler). Mina's father (Herbert Brunson) and fiancé, John Harker (David Manners), turn to the help of Dr. Van Helsing (Edward Van Sloan) to prevent her from turning into a vampire.
Lugosi played the role of Dracula on stage, and became known for getting a bit too into the character over the course of his lifetime. He made concessions to do whatever it took to be in the film, and we benefit from it. His stare and his mannerisms create the (at the time) wholly unique image of Count Dracula.
It's not textbook suspense, but you can't help but be curious to see what Dracula will do next. He's a magnetic figure and he drives our curiosity to the point that we become wrapped up in the story, no matter how slow it might feel at times.
You can't say "Dracula" is not a classic with a straight face. You might not identify it as a truly scary movie, or a truly suspenseful one, but its imagery has become so synonymous with the folk depiction of Dracula that it definitely did something very, very right.
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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
For the modern viewer to fully appreciate a classic film like "Dracula" they probably need to understand the evolution in horror movies from the 1930's to today. As "horrorfilmhistory.com" explains, this was the "very first talking horror film". Because of this, nobody at the time of production really knew how the audience would react to it. However, once they realized how successful it was, other movies (featuring various monsters and mad scientists) emerged to meet the demand. So it was this film, more than any other, that created the horror genre we enjoy today. That's quite an accomplishment in and of itself. And while it's true that the special effects were rather primitive in comparison to today's technology, it had some good features which tended to compensate. For example, I found the background scenery of the Carpathian Mountains and the way Dracula's eyes were illuminated to be quite impressive. As far as the acting is concerned, I thought Bela Lugosi was simply superb as "Count Dracula". Likewise, Edward Van Sloan ("Van Helsing") and Dwight Frye ("Renfield") also perform their roles in an excellent manner. Additionally, Helen Chandler ("Mina") was quite attractive even if her acting was only adequate. Anyway, while it might seem "mild" by today's standards, if a person has never seen it I think they might be pleasantly surprised if they just give it a chance. Especially on a dark night with the lights turned off.
This is one of those movies that you have to watch it like 4 times to
fully understand every part of it. This is truly a classic horror film.
Watching this movie in 2012, I wasn't afraid at all but back in the
30's the plot of this movie could easily scare someone.I like the fact
that they didn't use any special effects. They didn't have special
effects back then but it makes for a great raw horror film feel.
You have to keep in mind that this is relativily the start of horror films and people were not used to being scared from a film. The Characters play very well throughout the whole film. Overall this is a great horror film and If you haven't already seen this movie you need to see it.
I know it is considered film blasphemy to say that you don't like this classic, but I don't. Let me preface my opinion with the fact that I adore old horror movies, Bela Lugosi, and the Dracula story itself. However, I can think of many many examples utilizing each of those three qualities that are light years ahead of this comedic mess. There are so many things wrong with the film - Dwight Frye's annoying pantomimical performance, the convoluted mish-mash of a story, the mood-killing comic segments. Really, other than the iconic images, of which most people are familiar, there really isn't much to champion about this rendition. Bela Lugosi is excellent and intense, which only adds to the frustration of everything around him being sloppy and farcical. "The Vampire Bat", a poverty-row production also from 1931 and featuring Frye, is known for its minuscule budget and even with its many flaws, I found it to be much more enjoyable than "Dracula". For a truly creepy and entertaining story of The Count, I recommend Hammer's "Horror Of Dracula" - which perfectly captures the Gothic mood and style while channeling it through a far superior story and cast.
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