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Dracula (1931)

Passed | | Drama, Fantasy, Horror | 14 February 1931 (USA)
Trailer
1:50 | Trailer
The ancient vampire Count Dracula arrives in England and begins to prey upon the virtuous young Mina.

Directors:

Tod Browning, Karl Freund (uncredited)

Writers:

Bram Stoker (by), Hamilton Deane (from the play adapted by) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
5 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bela Lugosi ... Count Dracula
Helen Chandler ... Mina
David Manners ... John Harker
Dwight Frye ... Renfield
Edward Van Sloan ... Van Helsing
Herbert Bunston ... Doctor Seward
Frances Dade ... Lucy
Joan Standing Joan Standing ... Maid
Charles K. Gerrard ... Martin (as Charles Gerrard)
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Storyline

After a harrowing ride through the Carpathian mountains in eastern Europe, Renfield enters castle Dracula to finalize the transferral of Carfax Abbey in London to Count Dracula, who is in actuality a vampire. Renfield is drugged by the eerily hypnotic count, and turned into one of his thralls, protecting him during his sea voyage to London. After sucking the blood and turning the young Lucy Weston into a vampire, Dracula turns his attention to her friend Mina Seward, daughter of Dr. Seward who then calls in a specialist, Dr. Van Helsing, to diagnose the sudden deterioration of Mina's health. Van Helsing, realizing that Dracula is indeed a vampire, tries to prepare Mina's fiance, John Harker, and Dr. Seward for what is to come and the measures that will have to be taken to prevent Mina from becoming one of the undead. Written by Doug Sederberg <vornoff@sonic.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Carl Laemmle Presents The VAMPIRE THRILLER! (original posters) See more »

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy | Horror

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The opera performed when Dracula first meets Dr Seward is Wagner's Overture to Die Meistersinger. See more »

Goofs

Dracula sleeps on a bed of his own Transylvania dirt. But whenever he rises, he is perfectly groomed, and his silk cape has nary as speck of dirt on it. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Young Girl Passenger: [reading from a Transylvanian tourist brochure] "Among the rugged peaks that crown down upon the Borgo Pass are found crumbling castles of a bygone age."
See more »

Crazy Credits

The title card was revised at the last moment to include playwrights Hamilton Deane and John L. Balderston. But the old title card, with the movie's title in a different typeface, is still visible briefly at the tail end of a lap dissolve to the second credits card. See more »

Alternate Versions

A version of the film played on the 10/24/15 airing of Svengoolie featured a soundtrack taken from the French language audio track on the Dracula Blu-ray. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Un vampiro para dos (1965) See more »

Soundtracks

Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, WWV 96
(1868) (uncredited)
Music by by Richard Wagner
End of the Overture played at a concert
See more »

User Reviews

Still the champ
11 March 2004 | by hausrathmanSee all my reviews

Bela Lugosi forever captures the role of a certain undead Transylvanian count who takes a trip to London in the first legitimate version of the classic Bram Stoker novel. Despite many attempts by many talented film makers, I believe this version, directed by Tod Browning, remains the definitive take on the often-filmed novel. But why? Is it simply nostalgia? Granted, I do fondly remember staying up late as a child watching this film on Ghost Host theater and finding myself suitably frightened. However, if I were the same age today, would I find the film as effective? Would a steady diet of more modern and explicit horror films made me too jaded to enjoy the more subtle charms of this film? I hope not, but I could see how it might. The film is slow, and its slowness is further emphasized by the absence of an under score. It is stagey - being as it was more influenced by the stage play than the novel itself. Also, the story plays itself out too quickly. Van Helsing manages to figure everything out and dispatch the count in about two seconds. There simply isn't much suspense - and even less gore or violence. Yet it remains the champ. Why? The main reason is Lugosi himself. He gives the performance of a lifetime. He truly inhabits the role and is genuinely creepy. The rest of the cast, particularly Edward Van Sloan as Van Helsing and Dwight Frye as Renfield, support him admirably. However, when I watch the old Universal horror films nowadays, I find myself really enjoying the atmospheric sets and lighting. Yes, there is still much to love about Dracula today. (As long as you avoid the optional Philip Glass score on the DVD!)


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

USA

Language:

English | Hungarian | Latin

Release Date:

14 February 1931 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dracula See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$355,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$85,204
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

Black and White (tinted)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »

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