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Vampyr (1932)

Not Rated | | Fantasy, Horror | 6 May 1932 (Germany)
A drifter obsessed with the supernatural stumbles upon an inn where a severely ill adolescent girl is slowly becoming a vampire.

Director:

(as Carl Th. Dreyer)

Writers:

(based on a book by) (as J. Sheridan Le Fanu), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
...
Albert Bras ...
N. Babanini ...
Seine Frau (His Wife)
Jane Mora ...
Die Krankenschwester (The Nurse)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Georges Boidin ...
Limping Man
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Storyline

Allan Gray arrives late in the evening to a secluded riverside inn in the hamlet of Courtempierre. An old man enters his room, puts a sealed parcel on the table, blurts out that some woman mustn't die, and disappears. Gray senses in this a call for help. He puts the parcel in his pocket, and goes out. Eerie shadows lead him into an old house, where he encounters a weird village doctor. The doctor receives a bottle of poison from a strange, old woman. Through the window of an old castle Grey recognizes the old man from the inn. A shadow shoots the man, who drops dead. Inside the house Grey finds his two daughters, Gisèle and Léone, and some servants. He opens the parcel, and finds an old book about vampires. Léone is seriously ill after being bitten by a vampire. Instead of helping her, the village doctor places the bottle of poison at her bedside table, and then abducts her sister Gisèle. An old servant starts reading the old book, and finds out that the vampire in Courtempierre is a ... Written by Maths Jesperson {maths.jesperson1@comhem.se}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

oneiric | vampire | doctor | book | servant | See All (71) »

Genres:

Fantasy | Horror

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

6 May 1932 (Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Castle of Doom  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(DVD edition)

Sound Mix:

(Tobis-Klangfilm)

Aspect Ratio:

1.19 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Included among the "1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die", edited by Steven Schneider. See more »

Goofs

At exactly 16 minutes (in the Criterion DVD) as the camera pans right, there is a reflection in a glass window of the camera operator cranking the camera. See more »

Quotes

Der Dorfartz (The Village Doctor): Did you hear that?
Allan Grey: Yes. The child.
Der Dorfartz (The Village Doctor): The child?
Allan Grey: Yes. Yes. The child.
Der Dorfartz (The Village Doctor): There's no child here.
Allan Grey: But the dogs!
Der Dorfartz (The Village Doctor): There are no children or dogs here.
Allan Grey: No?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Witness (1985) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Visually stunning: The artistic representation of a nightmare

"Vampyr", one of the first horror movies with sound, is the work of the highly influential danish director Carl Theodor Dreyer. After directing the monumental "La Passion de Jeanne d'Arc" in 1928, Dreyer decided to make this modest film based on the novel "In a Glass Darkly" by Sheridan Le Fanu; while this is indeed his first movie with sound, it was conceived as a silent film, and the movie contains very few dialog. I must admit that as many, I was left with a big question mark in my face as the story was progressing; but the apparently disjointed storyline do make sense, as it is worked as a surreal experience of the lead character, it is as if Dreyer had filmed a nightmare, complete with the haunting images and eerie atmosphere. The movie is about a traveler, named Allan Grey (Julian West), who gets involved in a nightmarish plot when the owner of the inn where he is staying asks him for help to save his family from what he believes is a vampire. We follow Allan Grey in his surrealistic trip to madness as he finds out more and more about the supposed vampire that haunts the manor turned inn. The highly inventive camera work is truly outstanding, the combination of light and darkness is among the finest work in a black & white film and alone makes the movie worth a look; the movie not only has the structure of a nightmare, it also looks like one. The Gothic manor and the lonely rural exteriors increase the haunting atmosphere and the beautiful images Dreyer conceived are the work of a genius. The structure of the script may be complicated, but it shows its influence over David Lynch and other filmmakers with similar surrealist story lines and dreamlike sequences. It is probably not a masterpiece of the likes of the aforementioned "Passion" or the more well-known "Day of Wrath" (Vredens dag, 1943), but "Vampyr" shines with its own light as one of the finest horror movies of that period. The only real flaw in my opinion, was that the lead actor, Julian West, was probably not the best choice for a lead role, as his acting seems unnatural and not believable. I'm not sure if this was intended that way or had more to do with the fact that West produced the film, but it is my only complain about "Vampyr". This modest masterpiece is a must see for any horror fan or anyone who likes silent movies. It is a nightmarish trip to the darker parts of the subconscious mind. 8/10


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