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A young couple is forced to tangle with the great fanged one(Christopher Lee)when they search for the young man's brother, who has been too much of a ladies man. Plenty of screams, cleavage, fang work, cleavage, lovely looking women and did I say cleavage? My favorite scene is when Lee enters the room and says "I am Dracula".(No s--t)! For vampire and 'Drac' fans this will be a kick. Other cast members:Jenny Hanley, Christopher Matthews, Dennis Waterman, Wendy Wellman and the ever present Michael Ripper.
'Scars Of Dracula' was the last Hammer Dracula period piece. The next in the series 'Dracula A.D. 1972' was an unsuccessful attempt to set the series in the present day, and probably the worst Hammer movie I've seen to date. 'Scars...' is much better than '1972' but not as great as 'Dracula: Prince Of Darkness', which in my opinion the best of the lot. This was Christopher Lee's fifth time playing the Count and he is just terrific. He doesn't appear for about half an hour but as soon as he does the movie kicks into gear. I also enjoyed Patrick Troughton (Dr Who #2) as Dracula's pathetic slave/servant Klove. The main reason 'Scars...' disappoints slightly is that the baddies are wonderful, but the good guys are dull. Dennis Waterman (later to find British TV fame in 'The Sweeney' and 'Minder') isn't much of a Hammer leading man, and neither is Christopher Matthews who plays his womanizing brother. The leading lady Jenny Hanley is pretty but a bit wet, and certainly not your typical Hammer vixen. Anouska Hempel IS, but she's given very little on screen time. The supporting cast includes Hammer regular Michael Ripper, and also an amusing cameo from Bob Todd who Benny Hill fans will recognize. Roy Ward Baker directed two of the best Hammer movies in 'Quatermass And The Pit' and 'The Vampire Lovers', but 'Scars Of Dracula' isn't of the same standard. Maybe with a better cast and a bigger budget it could have been improved, but as it stands I'd say it's only average. Anyway, average Hammer to me is still more entertaining than most of today's lame horror output, and how can any horror buff not get a kick out of watching Christopher Lee as Dracula?
Grotesque effects and the star presence of Christopher Lee do little more
than salve the wounds these "Scars" will leave on the average audience --
for gothic horror fans equipped with a dose of patience only. A few moments
are exciting, but the script is not subtle, its characters unconvincingly
foolish. Dracula's servant does a bit to lighten things up with memorable
acting. The plot and story are very predictable (basically the only "plot"
is a series of people coming and going from Dracula's castle, in search of
the first missing visitor).
OK direction, but more care should have been taken in editing out the boring parts (perhaps before production began). Poor results.
Oh boy, what can I tell you? Well, it's a sequel to many other sequels
from the Hammer House of Horror.
As I warned you in my opening: "Never wake the Count while he's asleep". You may pay the consequences by watching a harmless and almost motionless Count Dracula, much less threatening than in his heydays.
I must admit that I am reviewing it because I am a faithful follower of Christopher Lee's career and as such it's part of his resume.
Unfortunately, someone decided to make him speak in this one. Mind you, his voice is commanding as a bass and very suggestive, but Dracula seldom talks, he just commands by hypnotizing his victims.
As the story goes, a young fellow has in mind to travel and stops at Castle Dracula for a night. Wrong choice of time and place...
Very soon a lovely (and voluptuous) girl begs him for help in order to escape the Count's attentions. The guy agrees and attempts to make love to the girl who very soon grows fond of his jugular and would like to take a bite, suddenly though, Dracula appears and a blood bath starts.
Change of scene. Next morning, everything is normal, no girl, no blood, but the young guy is obsessed with the idea of destroying Dracula.
He's so stupid as to lower himself, aided by the Count's manservant, into Dracula's Crypt. Guess what? He lands up spiked as a lamp post...
From there it's up to you to guess what else happens.
The attempt as being a "Gothic" version of the tale is not enough anymore. If the younger generations of the Victorian Age, as depicted in this movie, were truly such a bunch of stumbling and idiotic morons (which obviously they weren't), no wonder I was cheering all the time for the Count.
It's a mindless chapter in the Dracula/Lee series, only suited for those who follow the actor or are absolute fans of Dracula movies and must have it in their collections.
Otherwise stick to "Horror of Dracula", "Dracula, Prince of Darkness" and "Dracula Has Risen from the Grave". And only because it's the ideal continuation of the latter one, also "Taste the Blood of Dracula". But then just put a stake through his heart and throw the carcass to the wolves...
The three last installments including "Dracula, A.D. 1972" and "The Satanic Rites of Dracula" were just pale examples of movies made for the 1968 rebellious generation who wanted to part with the past and despised any authoritative figure, including The Prince of Darkness himself...
Unfortunately for them Dracula still lives and does what he does while they just became older if not ridiculously decrepit in their utopia views. Some even went so far that they replaced the old establishment with a much more devious and ruthless one. Exactly what Dracula stands for: bloodsucking and exploitation.
Think about it, it's very emblematic.
If despite all that, you still love the blood sucking Count, then serve yourselves, but be warned, it's really what you pay for...
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Scars of Dracula feels claustrophobic, like it was limited to a small studio. Without looking for originality, I still feel like Hammer made much better Dracula than this, and it reminds me of Captain Kronos: Vampire Hunter, in how it starts off promising, and slows down somewhere. Scars, which I don't like nearly as much as Kronos, doesn't seem quite as dragged out, but even the famous wall scaling scene in this movie is unimpressive. And to think that I read rave ups on that bit. Altogether, it seems like not much happens in Scars of Dracula's running time, and the most memorable thing is, (this may be a spoiler) when dripping blood puts out lit candles. I was looking forward to seeing more of the above, but that was the only really cool imagery to be seen, and the plot is, well, a ladie's man (and there's no nudity in this movie if that's what you're looking for) decides to stay at Dracula's castle for the night(?!), which I must say, happens to be the greatest idea... EVER! It also turns out that Dracula happens to take up a little more running time than usual, the photography is dull, and the story is not a very interesting one.
But not great. It is actually pretty violent and bloody compared to most HAMMER films. LEE is good as Dracula. Good Atmosphere, as always, but it does lack and shows that Hammer was going downhill. Still worth checking out though.
As a big fan of Dracula movies, I enjoyed this movie. That said, as an
objective movie viewer, I can say this film wasn't anything great. Just
Many like to rip on the later Christopher Lee Dracula film "Satanic Rites of Dracula", but I actually found that far more entertaining.
Nontheless, if you are a fan of Dracula films, this is still worth watching. Casual viewers may want to pick another Vamp flick.
Many people seem to dislike this episode from the Dracula series and I can't figure out why. Is it because some find the special effects lame? If that's their complaint it definitely doesn't make sense. The Hammer studios, at least as far as I know, never tried to convince the audience with many special effects. They mainly relied on their cast, directors, settings and suspense; this one has all of these great qualities. In my opinion SOD is even one of the better Hammer movies made in 70´s. There is a lot of more horror in it than in `Lust for a vampire' or `Twins of evil' to name a few titles from that era. SOD comes close to the `Horror of Dracula' and is certainly far better than `Prince of darkness'. Christopher Lee speaks a lot of lines in this episode, looks more evil than the devil himself and he is obviously enjoying it. You know what I mean after you have seen Dracula `petting' his assistant. There is one real weak spot in this film tough because it is not explained what caused Dracula to resurrect after his dead in `Taste the blood of Dracula'. Don't let other reviewers misguide you for you will miss one of the finest and original Hammer flicks ever made!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
"A Night to Remember" director Roy Ward Baker helmed the liveliest
"Dracula" sequel, "Scars of Dracula," with Christopher Lee reprising
the role for the fifth time in the Hammer Films franchise. "Scars of
Dracula" followed "Taste the Blood of Dracula" but preceded "Dracula,
1972 A.D." For the record, Dracula's groveling custodian bears most of
those titular scars. Whether he went by his real name Anthony Hinds or
his pseudonym John Elder, Hinds/Elder penned a screenplay far more
ambitious and audacious in its scope, violence, horror, and sex than
earlier "Dracula" movies. Mind you, despite its cheesy bat massacre,
"Scars of Dracula" qualifies as the bloodiest Hammer film. Moreover,
"Scars of Dracula" was the first to receive an R-rating in the United
States. Dracula punishes his disobedient caretaker by applying the
red-hot sword to his back. Further, the caretaker accepts his
punishment as if he approved of being punished. Can we say masochism?
Of course, the bats are hopelessly phony. Nevertheless, the scene where
a bat mauls the face of the priest in the church like piranha is
terrific. The clergy had come under increasing attack in 1970s movies.
This scene alone should have landed the film on the video nasties list
in Great Britain. Indeed, "Scars of Dracula" is the most supernatural
of the Hammer "Dracula" franchise. Ultimately, it is the one "Dracula"
film from Hammer where the Count boasts more screen time than usual. He
also has a fiery death scene that suggests greater powers were at work
to vanquish him since mere mortals could not finish him off.
Inevitably, this quasi-invincibility adds stature to Christopher Lee's
The opening gambit could easily have provided material for an entire movie. Although it somewhat picks up the narrative thread from the previous London-based Dracula opus, "Scars of Dracula" takes place primarily in rural Europe as earlier "Dracula" movies. A farmer's daughter has been killed by a vampire. The introductory credits appear as her sad father totes her lifeless remains to the village. The inn landlord (Michael Ripper of "The Creeping Flesh") assembles the villagers. They load up both sufficient fuel and timber, march Dracula's castle through the woods, trick Dracula's custodian into letting them inside and set fire to the premises. Of course, their well-intentioned efforts avail them little because Dracula rests in a chamber with no door, accessible only a high window. Ironically, before he allowed them to approach the castle, the priest uttered a prayer to protect his flock. When they return triumphantly from Dracula's castle the priest congratulates them on the success of their mission. "We must give thanks," the priest rejoices, "thanks to our savior for his protection." The villagers agree. The priest turns to leave with them. "Let us go to our church and tell our loved ones they are safe." Initially, before he supervised their departure, the landlord ordered his wife Marie (television actress Margo Boht) to gather the rest of the village into the church. The last thing that the landlord could imagine has happened. No sooner have they opened the church doors than four vampire bats swoop out past them. The men discover that the rest of the villagers lay blood-splattered and dead in the house of worship. Never have so many people been slaughtered during the first ten minutes in a Hammer "Dracula!"
The resurrection scene in "Scars of Dracula" has got to be the most outrageous of the franchise. A blood-dripping vampire bat shows up (whether by devilish designs or otherwise we never learn) at the place where Dracula died in "Taste the Blood of Dracula" and pukes blood on the Count's remains. Presto, Count Dracula is reconstituted into an immaculate Christopher Lee. Let the blood-sucking begin! Meanwhile, a carefree young Lothario, Paul Carlson (Christopher Matthews of "Scream and Scream Again"), finds himself fleeing from the Burgomaster (Bob Todd of "Burke & Hare") because the Burgomaster's daughter, Alice (Delia Lindsay of "The Devil's Widow"), has accused him of wantonly having his way with her. Alice runs around with a bed sheet concealing her breasts and vagina. However, she cavorts about with her plucky buttocks bare for all-to-see in two shots as she leaves a room and romps up some stairs. The Burgomaster's men pursue Paul and he makes a momentary appearance at birthday party for a girlfriend, Sarah, and then leaps from a high window into a stagecoach that takes him off deep stumbles into the woods.
Paul has no luck finding anybody who will give him shelter. Predictably, things get worse. Eventually, he takes refuge at the worst place imaginable--Dracula's castle. Dracula is very civil to him when he arrives. Indeed, Dracula's dark-haired hostess, Tania, decides to sleep with Paul. The Count catches them in bed together and his rage at seeing what she had planned to do to Paul prompts Dracula to stab her "Psycho" style repeatedly before he quenches his lust for her blood. This is the first time that Dracula has behaved in this fashion. In "Horror of Dracula," he drove a vampire woman from sinking her fangs into Jonathan Harker. Presumably, since she had slept with him, Dracula was punishing her for cheating on him. Eventually, Paul's brother Simon (Dennis Waterman of "Man in the Wilderness") sets out to find him with Sarah Framsen (Jenny Hanley of "On Her Majesty's Secret Service") tagging along despite Simon's protests. Meantime, Paul discovers Dracula's coffin in a room that has no door. Klove (Patrick Troughton of "The Omen") explains that the Master sleeps where nobody can reach him. Baker stages a neat scene where we see Dracula leaving through the window of his room and scaling the architecture to the windows above. Actually, Bram Stoker wrote about Dracula's ability to scale walls.
"Scars of Dracula" qualifies as one of the best of the Hammer "Dracula" films.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I really liked the beginning of this Hammer-flick. We get to follow
this wisecracking, good looking young guy around on what may be a
typical night of his life. This includes, of course, compulsive
womanizing, attending birthday parties, escaping the law, and a slumber
party at Count Draculas (Christopher Lee, who else?) house. This fella'
is not used to being rejected by women, and fifteen minutes into the
movie, he scores the third chick of the evening. Those old seventies
broads sure were easy! Unfortunately for Mr. Handsome, that third girl,
with whom he spends the night, just happens to belong to the old Count,
and he does not like his guests stealing his women. Upon discovering
his cheating girlfriend, Dracula, being the reasonable man he is, stabs
her repeatedly in the guts.
Shortly after, our hero sadly vanishes from the script, and instead we get to follow his boring brother around. This nerd has a much more laid back approach to life (and women), and all the sexual tension that's been building up to this point goes out the window. From here on, it's the usual "The Count's a vampire!" - "You don't say!" type of movie, and we get a lot of grumpy innkeepers, cowardly priests and not so well executed suspense scenes. And what about that wimpy, treacherous henchman of Dracula's? Shouldn't the Count have offed him like half an hour into the movie? I guess good servants were hard to come by in those days.
Another problem with the movie, is that except for the beginning, it's really lacking in the t&a-department. This is of course a serious mistake from an artistic point of view, and thus the average male viewer yawns his way through the rest of the piece. Such a shame on the cool exposition, that the flick couldn't follow through.
If you are a serious Hammer-fan, this is a must-see, but if your'e not, you might as well leave it be.
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