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Drácula contra Frankenstein
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Drácula contra Frankenstein More at IMDbPro »

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8 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Well, it's better than Poseidon...

Author: mido505 from Richmond, VA
27 August 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Jess Franco's strangely sedate monster bash is not one of his indispensable efforts, but will hold your attention if you catch it in the right mood. Defiantly cinematic, Dracula contra Frankenstein contains very little dialog, forcing the viewer to actually pay attention to what is happening on the screen in order to follow the narrative. The problem is that the mise en scene is scrappy, poverty stricken, and erratic; dominated by pointless, jerky zooms; and offering none of the colorful wide angled delirium that makes Franco's follow up film, The Erotic Rites of Frankenstein, such a mesmerizing experience. Franco does manage to conjure up a somewhat dank, depressing atmosphere, and provide the occasional interesting image, such as Dracula being revived by slowly submerging a bat in a jar of blood, but Dracula contra Frankenstein plays for the most part like a trial run for his later masterpiece.

Of course, Dr. Frankenstein is really just Dr. Orloff under a different name; the ubiquitous amoral ubermensch is this time seeking to enslave humanity by reviving Dracula and the Frankenstein monster in order to create an army of the undead subject to his superior will. A sick and possibly drunk Dennis Price fails to make much of an impression as the good Doctor, but Howard Vernon gives an interesting performance as Dracula, playing him like Morpho from The Awful Dr. Orloff, slack jawed, bug eyed, and mute. The great Britt Nichols is also on hand as a very fetching Vampire Girl.

As I stated previously, this is lesser Franco, but like most Franco films, good and bad, it contains interesting, original elements that simply cannot be found elsewhere. Dracula contra Frankenstein is a film made by a man who loves the movies for people who love the movies. It shows. Sure, I drank most of a bottle of wine while I was watching it, which may have colored my judgment, but when I tried the same thing with Poseidon I fell asleep.

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7 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

A classic type of story, despite all the strange flourishes

Author: horrorbargainbin ( from hollywood, CA
1 August 2002

At first the movie appears to be mainly strange images shot up close, but then the narration kicks in and the plot begins to make some sense. At two times the narration is ahead of the action. I'm sure the technique is done on purpose, but it's unusual. There is very little dialogue otherwise.

Ok, there is lots of memorable material in this movie. Blood is drained from a captured woman and poured onto a live bat that actually drinks the blood (juice?). Dracula's eyes are always open, even when he sleeps. Very creepy and accented by the red eyeliner. In my favorite scene the Wolfman is called by a Gypsy curse and returns from "beyond the grave". A bloody Wrestlemania ensues with the Frankenstein Monster.

Recommended if you like twists on the old tales.

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5 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Grade Z fun

Author: ultra_tippergore from United States
27 June 2009

Jesús Franco (aka uncle Jess) decided here to put every possible movie monster together(Drácula, Frankenstein and the werewolf) and "Dracula vs Frankenstein" was spawned. Dr. Frankenstein creates an obedient monster with his illegal activities. Then, Count Dracula (Howard Vernon) also joins Frankenstein army. This is maybe one of the oldest Dracula ever, he is so old that is a joke. The old Dracula and the evil monster begins their reign of horror in the town, fortunately for the people, the werewolf is there to help the town against Dracula and the monster (yes, this movie is a complete non-sense). Apart from the non-sense of everything here, we have a good staff of young and beautiful chicks. OK, Dracula Vs Frankenstein is more an unintentionally comedy than a horror movie, not even a 5 year old girl can be scared by this one, its even cheesier than any Ed Wood movie, but it is funny. Its one of those "so bad its good" movies, pure grade Z fun. Unfortunately, we have no gore or sex in this Franco movie, but still is recommended.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Dracula contra logic

Author: John Seal from Oakland CA
1 February 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The films of Jesus Franco are loved and hated in almost equal measure (well, perhaps hated a bit more than loved), but few drive viewers to extremes the way Dracula contra Frankenstein does. The haters tend to view the film as a terrible 'tribute' to the Universal horrors of the '30s and '40s, and perhaps it is (gotta love those rubber bats), but there's more going on here than a salute to glories past. There's a dreamlike quality to Dracula contra Frankenstein that, intentional or not, helps me overlook a lot of the film's sins and concentrate on its virtues. The film opens with a virtually dialogue-free first half hour that allows Franco to play to his strengths: outdoor scenes and shots of strange or unusual architecture. When people finally DO start talking, the film is barely more coherent than before, with Rainer von Frankenstein (which relative was he?) expounding on how he will bend Dracula and his vampire slaves to his will. Franco does use the zoom lens, but he tends to use it with a purpose this time--he uses it to draw particular attention to his characters' eyes, and the score (apparently co-composed by Bruno Nicolai and Daniel White) is repetitive but well applied. Look past the bats and the terrible special effects, and appreciate this film for what it is: a psychedelic monster rally, Franco-style.

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:


Author: balor1999 from Netherlands
23 November 2011

This is a fantastic film, probably one of Franco's best, and definitely one of the best Frankenstein movies ever made. In runs like a magnificent homage to the Universal horror films of the 1940s, but with an intellectual level that resembles Jean-Luc Godard. Absolutely fantastic. The locations and cinematography are great, and there is a superb score by Brune Nicolai. The actors are top notch too, including the brilliant Dennice Price and Howard Vernon performing some of their best bits ever. Amazing.

This is the kind of film that should be on the shelf of every Jess Franco enthusiast or every lover of classic suspense films. It can be watched over and over again, each time discovering new layers of meaning. It is the first film in Franco's trilogy of monster movies, and definitely one of the best. I watched the original Spanish version without any subtitles, but luckily Franco used minimal dialog this time, which made the cinematographic experience even greater as it felt like TOTAL CINEMA!!! This is one of the best films I have ever seen. Highly recommended!!!

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Really liked it, until it started to focus more on its story.

Author: Boba_Fett1138 from Groningen, The Netherlands
19 March 2012

No big secret I'm not a big Jesus Franco fan. On the contrary quite really, since I believe he's the worst still living movie director and writer out there. But every now and then I come across a movie by him that I at least can stand and finish watching, without getting a headache.

I was actually quite surprised how much I was loving this movie at first. I liked the movie for not really having a story in it, since it made the movie all about its atmosphere and there were no distractions from any bad actors, or horribly written lines, since the movie featured hardly any dialog in it at all. The movie felt like a good old fashioned horror production, that focused more on atmosphere than anything else really. It's a real shame that toward its end the movie suddenly decides to still focus on its story, which is just not all that very well written.

To be frank, I often had absolutely no idea what was going on with its story. This is a problem I have with basically all of Jesus Franco's movies and something that rapidly gets worse and more annoying in this movie, as it headed closer toward its ending. It will make you loose interest real fast and it makes you wish for this movie to end. Unfortunately it all goes on for far too long, which makes the movie feel overlong, even while its only 88 minutes short.

It isn't an all that interesting or original monster mash-up movie. It has Dracula, the Frankenstein monster and even the wolf-man in it but really, the movie does nothing good, with any of it. I know it sounds like every classic horror fan's dream but trust me, you are better off skipping this movie.

I really liked the first hour or this movie for its atmosphere and overall approach but this got mostly ruined by a weak story, which was just too prominently present in the movie its second half. I guess that the most positive thing I can say about this movie is that's truly far from the worst thing, I have seen, done by Jesus Franco.


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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Mediterranean Monster Mash

Author: Glen McCulla from United Kingdom
10 November 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Another hastily-assembled horror effort from hack / genius Jess Franco (delet as applicable) in probably the busiest phase of his career - this was filmed pretty much simultaneously with "The Curse of Frankenstein" (aka "The Erotic Rites of Frankenstein") and "Daughter of Dracula", and utilises many of the same cast members and filming locations.

Sadly, this is the least involving and most badly-paced of these three movies. Franco's trademark OTT camera pans and zooms feature prominently, and the editing is even sloppier and choppier than usual.

Dr Frankenstein (played by an ageing and ill-looking Dennis Price) arrives in a Transylvanian village in thrall to Dracula. The vampire Count (Franco regular Howard Vernon, in a sadly dialogue-free role) has been dispatched with the regulation stake through the heart by Dr Seward (Alberto D'Albes), but the deranged Doc revives him with the intention of using the Count as his mind-controlled slave. Also along for the ride are a Boris Karloff-like Frankenstein Monster (Fernando Bibao), a sexy vampire bride (the sultry Britt Nichols), a gypsy witch who befriends Dr Seward, and a rotten-looking Wolfman who turns up in the last reel to battle the Monster. Remerkably, given this free-for-all of horror elements, the film still manages to move at a leaden pace thanks to Franco's stolid direction and listless setups.

Not the greatest monster team-up movie (that remains "Abbott and Costello meet Frankenstein") or even the best Jess Franco movie (for my money, that's "A Virgin Anmong the Living Dead"), but worth a watch on a Friday night with a few cans of ale - if only for such bizarre elements as a vampire victim (the ever-lovely Anne Libert) being staked through the EYE (?!!?), and some hilariously overblown dialogue: Dennis Price managing to over-act and chew the scenery even with the handicap of atrocious dubbing.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Okay movie may make you nod off

Author: dbborroughs from Glen Cove, New York
4 November 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Jess Franco madness about Dracula, Frankenstein and a wolfman. Dracula is staked in his Coffin and left for dead. Frankenstein with the monster in tow shows up and brings both the monster and the vampire back to life. Somewhere in there a werewolf is brought in to help stop the two monsters. This is a good looking film(though the Frankenstein monster is a golden throw back to a high school production with scars and such clear drawn on with grease paint). Decidedly retro with beautiful women thrown in, this is one of Franco's mid-range movies. Its not as bad as some of the stuff he's turned out and its nowhere near as good as other stuff(Give the man credit he's directed at least 189 movies). The retro style of handling the classic monsters unfortunately kind of wears thin, especially since the monster looks so silly. There are also the typical long passages where no one says anything and people wander about. Its a movie that just sort of is. Its also a movie that more likely to help you nod off.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

At least it has a decent Bruno Nicolai score

Author: bensonmum2 from Tennessee
12 August 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Because this is Franco, giving a plot rundown is something of a futile challenge, but I'll do my best to hit some of the highlights. Dr. Frankenstein arrives in some unnamed village to work in a supposedly abandoned castle. The castle actually isn't so abandoned as it's really the home of Dracula and his vampire servants. It's not long before Dr. Frankenstein revives his creation. Dr. Frankenstein puts his monster and Dracula to work kidnapping local women for his experiments. Why? I have no idea, but he straps them to a table and does his thing. But Dracula being Dracula is sucking the life out of some of the locals. It's up to Dr. Seward and the local gypsies/werewolves to put a stop to Frankenstein and Dracula.

During the first few moments of Dracula, Prisoner of Frankenstein, I was having trouble believing that this was a Franco film. The opening shots of the castle with Bruno Nicolai's score are well done and, for the lack of anything better, un-Franco-like. But this impression only lasted a few moments as Franco quickly shifts from the imposing and foreboding castle to a shot of a random dog on a random staircase. That's Franco for you.

Compared with some of the other Franco films I've seen, Dracula, Prisoner of Frankenstein isn't too bad. Don't misunderstand, it's not very good, but if you've seen something like Franco's Oasis of the Zombies, this movie is a winner. You get a lot of what you expect from Franco – suspect acting, poor make-up effects, and shaky camera work. One thing that really bothered me, though, is that Franco can't seem to decide what time period his film is set. While some characters drive cars, Dr. Seward gets around in a horse and buggy. And even though Dr. Frankenstein has a large collection of machines that require electricity, there's not a light bulb to be found anywhere. Things like this just bug me. . In the end, I can't in good conscious recommend Dracula, Prisoner of Frankenstein to anyone other than the most die-hard of Franco completists.

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Dracula contra...WHAT?

Author: TOXPISTOSOU from Patra, Greece
12 January 2003

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

After I bought Al Adamson's "Dracula vs. Frankenstein",I also tracked down and found this.It was supposed to be a homage to director James Whale according to director Franco.Actually,it's an incoherent mess and another nail in the coffin for Dennis Price's career!SPOILER ALERT!Dracula and the Monster are in the same team,but since the not-so-brave count is afraid of the werewolf a gypsy woman has recently resurrected,the Monster has to face him.END OF SPOILERS!A no plot,no budget movie that'll put even die-hard monster fans to sleep.Strangely enough,it was the first of a trilogy of movies that consists of this one,"The erotic rites of Frenkenstein" and "The daughter of Dracula"!Compelling,mind-boggling,whatever...

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