At midnight on Walpurgis Night, an English clerk, Renfield, arrives at Count Dracula's castle in the Carpathian Mountains. After signing papers to take over a ruined abbey near London, ... See full summary »
Count Alucard (read his name backwards) finds his way from Budapest to the swamps of the Deep South; his four nemeses are a medical doctor, a university professor, a jilted fiancé and the woman he loves.
Lon Chaney Jr.,
After Jonathan Harker attacks Dracula at his castle (apparently somewhere in Germany), the vampire travels to a nearby city, where he preys on the family of Harker's fiancée. The only one ... See full summary »
At midnight on Walpurgis Night, an English clerk, Renfield, arrives at Count Dracula's castle in the Carpathian Mountains. After signing papers to take over a ruined abbey near London, Dracula drives Renfield mad and commands obedience. Renfield escorts the boxed count on a death ship to London. From there, the Count is introduced into the society of his neighbor, Dr. Seward, who runs an asylum. Dracula makes short work of family friend, Lucia Weston, then begins his assault on Eva Seward, the doctor's daughter. A visiting expert in the occult, Van Helsing, recognizes Dracula for who he is, and there begins a battle for Eva's body and soul. Written by
Shot the same time as the English version of Dracula, this Spanish version was shot on the same sets during the night. Some people consider this superior to the English version. In SOME ways it is.
The English version was badly directed by Tod Browning...but it was Browning's first sound film. His direction (which was great in the silents) suffers from having to have the actors speak into concealed microphones. Also the camera seems rooted to the spot. The Spanish version however was exceptionally well-directed. The camera moves and the director seems very at ease with using sound. Also the first appearance of Dracula in the English version was badly handled--in the Spanish one it's actually very good and a little frightening! Also we find out the fate of Lucia (Lucy) in this one. And the plots with Renfield and Eva (Mina) are more fleshed out . And Pablo Alvarez Rubio gives a good performance as Reinfield. AND the girls wear more revealing nightgowns:) But that's about it.
This film is VERY slow (it runs 25 minutes longer than the other) and the acting isn't that good. The man playing van Helsing overacts (badly) and Barry Norton and Lupita Tovar are just OK as Eva and Juan. But Carlos Villatias is all wrong as Dracula. He tries but he can't carry the role. His villainous looks are actually rather silly and he totally lacks the screen presence of Lugosi. If that had teamed this director with the English cast there might have been a GREAT movie. But, unfortunately, it didn't happen. I do give this a 7 though.
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