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6/10
Another all-star monster extravaganza!
beejer20 March 2000
House of Dracula is another of the series of all-star monster extravaganzas produced by Universal in the 40s.

This one deals with The Wolf Man (Lon Chaney Jr.) and Dracula (John Carradine) coming to scientist Onslow Stevens for a cure for what ails them. Along the way they find the Frankenstein Monster (Glenn Strange) and try to help him as well. Well, we all know that things will not go smoothly and the monsters will soon be running amok.

Carradine, playing Dracula for the second time, is quite effective in the role. He gives it his own interpretation and doesn't try to copy Bela Lugosi. Chaney gives a sympathetic performance as the doomed Lawrence Talbot. Stevens, in a rare leading role, also stands out as the doctor. The Frankenstein monster has little to do until the final minutes of the film.

As monster films go, this isn't one of the all-time greats, but on the other hand it does provide 67 minutes of solid entertainment.
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6/10
House of Dracula (1945) **1/2
JoeKarlosi1 June 2005
There has been a debate raging for Universal Monster fans over the decades as to what's the better film -- "House of Frankenstein" or "House of Dracula"? For me, I may prefer HOUSE OF FRANKENSTEIN, but I certainly wouldn't count out an evening with this one, the final "serious" entry in Universal's classic monster series. It's still pretty good, though I feel its main problem is just being a victim of familiarity and nowhere else to really go at this stage. At least "Frankenstein" was a fresh idea at the time, while "Dracula" repeats the old formula again and reveals that our favorite cherished monsters had reached their limitations.

Dracula (John Carradine) arrives at the home of the kindly Dr. Edelmann (Onslow Stevens) to seek a cure from his vampirism. At the same time, the Wolf Man (Lon Chaney) shows up looking for release from his lycanthropy. Through a series of chaotic events, the warm hearted doctor turns into a Jekyll/Hyde madman and becomes intent on reviving the Frankenstein Monster (Glenn Strange). Throw in a pretty "hunchback" nurse and you've got what the ads curiously touted as "FIVE Monsters!"

What "House of Dracula" has going for it is more of that vintage Universal atmosphere and soothing music soundtrack, and a superb dual performance from Onslow Stevens as the scientist. John Carradine turns in another fine rendition of his suave Count Dracula, but Lon Chaney's werewolf is pretty much by the books at this point, although the end of the movie contains an interesting little twist for a change. Glenn Strange makes a very awesome-looking Frankenstein Monster, but unfortunately spends 99% of the film lying flat on his back with the exception of a few minor shots when he's up on his feet; some of his most active footage is swiped from BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN and GHOST OF FRANKENSTEIN.

All things considered you could undoubtedly do a lot worse than "House of Dracula" for a nightly Monster Mash, but it's easy to see why Dracula, the Wolf Man and Frankenstein's Monster were retired after this chapter, and why they needed Abbott & Costello to resuscitate them three years later. **1/2 out of ****
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7/10
Not as good as the first film to star all three...but not bad either.
The_Void11 April 2006
House of Dracula works from the same basic premise as House of Frankenstein from the year before; namely that Universal's three most famous monsters; Dracula, Frankenstein's Monster and The Wolf Man are appearing in the movie together. Naturally, the film is rather messy therefore, but the fact that all three monsters are there is usually enough to ensure that the film's sixty seven minutes don't become boring. It's obvious that the idea of making another monster mash came into the writer's head before an actual plot did, as the yarn we're given isn't exactly without holes. The plot sees Count Dracula arrive at Dr. Edelman's home asking for a cure for his vampirism. Then, what can only be described as a coincidence, sees Lawrence Talbot, a.k.a. The Wolf Man turn up asking for a cure for his affliction! It turns out that Dracula is on the prowl for Edelman's daughter, but Talbot really is serious. When it turns out that he can't be stopped from turning into a wolf, The Wolf Man throws himself into the sea...where he ends up finding Frankenstein's Monster.

Overall, this film isn't as good as the earlier House of Frankenstein. The 1944 film put its plot together better than this entry in the series does, as the plot here doesn't give equal time to each Universal monster. Dracula's plot is the biggest at first, but soon fizzles out only to resurface at the end. The Wolf Man is the star of the show, but his story never really develops, and is essentially just another version of the plot he always finds himself in. Frankenstein's Monster is given the coldest hand, as he appears in the movie merely as an afterthought, and an obvious excuse to ensure that all three monsters appear in the movie. The story of the doctor who binds all three together is the most interesting, but this is a little disappointing as he isn't the reason why people will see this film. The acting is good enough, with John Carradine showing his sinister side and Lon Chaney Jr once again making sure that his character is bathed in tragedy. Glenn Strange is given nothing to do, and Onslow Stevens proves the real highlight as Dr Edelman. Overall, this film won't do much for anyone that isn't a fan of Universal horror; but as silly monster movies go, House of Dracula is worth seeing.
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More fun from Universal, but looks like leftovers
mord398 October 2000
MORD39 RATING: **1/2 out of ****

HOUSE OF DRACULA is a small notch below the previous HOUSE OF FRANKENSTEIN, mostly because the novelty of the three monsters theme feels repetitive. Just the same, it's much fun and a fitting conclusion to the "serious" monster pictures in a beloved series.

John Carradine is capable again as Dracula, but Lon Chaney's Wolfman stint is really automatic by now. Once again, Glenn Strange is an impressive Frankenstein Monster, albeit a brief one for the last minute or two. The real attraction this time is Onslow Stevens in the role of a kindly sympathetic doctor who sets out to "cure" Dracula and the Wolfman, but ultimately becomes a sort of Jekyll/Hyde as a result of his efforts. Stevens is excellent in this film, and takes center stage.

Still, there is a feeling of "yesterday's leftovers" with the film. Stock footage is lifted again from GHOST OF FRANKENSTEIN and BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN, and there is a general aura around the proceedings which suggests that it was thrown together more hastily.

These negative comments in no way make for an unsatisfactory view, however...HOUSE OF DRACULA is the last of its line, and still an essential Universal Horror.
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2 Missing Persons
jajw14 October 2004
Much of what is written here is useful, but I'd like to add a few comments. Interestingly for Universal horror fans, House of Dracula is the only film in the Frankenstein series that does not star Karloff or Lugosi. The absence of these two horror heavyweights makes the film seem more disjointed than other entries (though still fun.) (John Carradine, I think scores best, while Mr. Chaney, Jr., is merely repeating himself. House of D also introduces a female hunchback!) I wonder if Karloff and Lugosi are both absent because they were working on "The Body Snatcher," which was released the same year and is arguably Karloff's last great horror film.
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8/10
More monsters than you can shake a torch at
evilskip25 August 1999
This is another Universal fun filled fright fest.Many people want to compare it to House Of Frankenstein.Even though it has similar cast and the same director it can stand on its own.(It does appear that Erle C Kenton directed most of the Universal horror films of the 40's).

The plot recap:Baron Latos appears at the home of Dr Eidlemann seeking a "cure" for his vampirism.Larry Talbot (who somehow survived House OF Frankenstein) also shows up at the good doctors door seeking a cure for his affliction.After a failed suicide attempt Talbot and the doctor find the Frankenstein monster. To complicate matters just before he bites the dust, Dracula infects the good doctor with his blood.The doctor becomes a bloodthirsty maniac at certain times.Where this leads to is something you'll have to see for your self.

Carradine actually gives a very good performance as Dracula. He isn't chewing up the scenery as he will in later roles. It is hard to repress giggles when he appears in a top hat though.The cape/cloak is traditional but the hat has to go. Where does the hat go when he changes into a bat...?

Onslow Stevens gives an excellent portrayal of the doctor. He's torn between his basic kindness and the increasing blood lust he is now prone to. This is a very underrated performance.Chaney brings even more life to the Wolf Man in his 4th appearance in that role.

The monster isn't given much to do this time.Just lay on the table until the end(some stock footage from the Ghost Of Frankenstein is used).At least in House Of Frankenstein he was up and around a bit.

Yes this does stick to the basic Universal pattern complete with the angry village mob running amok with torches.But it isn't a bad way to spend an hour and ten minutes.It gets a low 8.
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Addle-brained but fast paced and entertaining Universal Horror pic; Stevens is very enjoyable as the mad scientist
J. Spurlin15 March 2007
Baron Latos appears to Dr. Edelman (Onslow Stevens) in the middle of the night and reveals that he's really Count Dracula (John Carradine). He seeks a cure for his vampirism. A trip to the basement shows that Dracula has already taken the liberty of moving in - there's his coffin, filled with the dirt from his own grave. Dr. Edelman takes this brazenness in stride while refusing to believe in the supernatural. Later, Lawrence Talbot (Lon Chaney, Jr.) shows up, asking for a cure for his lycanthropy. He can't bear to change into a werewolf one more time. Edelman must save Talbot from a suicide attempt when Talbot throws himself into the ocean and gets swept into a cave. While in the cave, Edelman and Talbot find Frankenstein's monster (Glenn Strange). Edelman decides to revive him, but Talbot and Edelman's hunchbacked female assistant (Jane Adams) talk him out of it. Meanwhile, Edelman's other assistant (Martha O'Driscoll) finds herself seduced by Count Dracula; while Edelman finds the evil count has an even more powerful influence over his own life.

Dracula's corruption of Edelman adds a Jekyll-and-Hyde type story to this already over-monstered brew. Why didn't they throw in the Mummy and the Invisible Man for the hell of it?

Of all the Universal Horror films that are wacky-idiotic, this is the most entertaining. Stevens is very enjoyable as Edelman; the plot moves fast; a certain character gets his first happy ending; and it's fun to imagine that the real reason Frankenstein's monster is angry is that he sees the movie is almost over and he hasn't even done anything yet.
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9/10
An Outstanding Universal Horror Classic
Rainey Dawn10 December 2014
House of Dracula is quick to pull you in right from the start of the film. The movie keeps a fairly quick pace - there is no "boring parts" within this flick. The story is simple: Dracula and Wolf Man Lawrence Talbot are both seeking cures for their supernatural states from Dr. Edelman but the way it plays out is far from being simple because there are quite a few problems with curing both creatures.

This wonderful film has three of the most iconic Universal Monsters: Dracula, Wolf Man and Frankenstein's Monster. Carradine played Dracula quite well (imo), Chaney Jr. is great as Talbot/Wolf Man as usual and Strange makes a great Monster although his part is way to small. Also there is Dr. Edelman played by Stevens... Stevens portrayed the "Mad" Scientist turned Vampire so perfectly well.

Someone said the only thing wrong with this film was that The Monster was not in it long enough and I do agree with that and is the only reason I'm not rating this movie a perfect 10 (but almost).

Watch the House of Frankenstein first then follow up with House of Dracula to see them in order.

9.5/10
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6/10
House Of Dracula (1945) **1/2
MARIO GAUCI9 August 2005
I enjoyed this more the second time around, because at first I was disappointed to watch how poorly the Universal monsters fared when compared to earlier outings. In fact, Dracula (John Carradine) does little but lust after the female assistant of the 'celebrated' doctor (Onslow Stevens) who's supposed to cure his vampirism; though Lon Chaney Jr., returning as The Wolf Man, changes a couple of times in the film, nothing ever comes of these - but, for once, we do get a happy ending for him here; the Frankenstein Monster (Glenn Strange) doesn't appear until half the film is over and, till the very last sequence, is strapped to an operating table (still, his final rampage and come-uppance, though partly lifted from THE GHOST OF FRANKENSTEIN [1942], is effective enough).

The film, however, belongs to Onslow Stevens who manages both facets of the doctor's personality - the intellectual, rather cold scientist who finds logic even in the supernatural and, when infected with Dracula's blood, the prowling Hyde-like menace who re-activates the Frankenstein monster (whom he just happens to come across in a cave, by the way) for his sinister purposes...but these, needless to say, are thwarted by the nth stomping of the castle grounds by the angry villagers, led by a dignified Lionel Atwill and zombie-like Skelton Knaggs! Besides Stevens' 'monster', the film features a girl hunchback(!) - I remember laughing out loud at her introduction when I first watched the film but, thinking about it now, her presence does serve a purpose as Stevens' experiments are supposed to help cure her deformity (apparently, there ain't nothing this doctor can't fix!). Despite the general cheapness of the production, I was struck by the shadowy lighting, the music (some of it, admittedly, borrowed from earlier pictures) and the set design - elements which are always a pleasure to look out for in these Universal 'classics'.
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5/10
Disappointing last entry in the Unverisal monsters series.
Boba_Fett11388 August 2005
This movies marks the final appearance for the famous classic horror characters; Dracula, The Frankenstein creature and The Wolf Man. Well yes, of course those characters would later appear in many other horror movies over the years, in many different forms and ways but this was the last official Universal Pictures horror movie with those classic monsters. Unless you also count "Bud Abbott Lou Costello Meet Frankenstein" but since that movie was a comedy I think its fair to say that this movie is the last in the series, that follows the movies; "Dracula", "Frankenstein", "Bride of Frankenstein", "Dracula's Daughter", "Son of Frankenstein", "The Wolf Man", "The Ghost of Frankenstein", "Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man", "Son of Dracula" and "House of Frankenstein".

Main problem is that the movie lacks any fresh ideas or one good central character. I'm still not sure who was supposed to be the main characters in this movie. It also lacks some good well known actors. Basically the only well known actors from the good old days in this movie are Lon Chaney Jr. and Lionel Atwill.

John Carradine once again reprises his role as Dracula and he is surprisingly better than he was in "House of Frankenstein". Glenn Strange also reprises his role as the Frankenstein monster once more but he doesn't have an awful lot to do in this movie. Lon Chaney Jr. perhaps plays his best Wolf Man role in this movie and his character gets the most satisfying ending of all the monster characters (Whether he dies or not, or gets cured finally am I not going to spoil for you.). The Wolf Man truly was a tragic character and Chaney Jr. perfectly captures that feeling in this movie.

It's too bad that the movie lacks in so many important things; a good story, well known classic horror actors, a good main character and any original moments. Still of course for the fans of the genre, this movie still remains perfectly watchable.

5/10

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5/10
Dracula, Wolf Man and Frankenstein in one film, but the film as a whole didn't deliver as much as it could have done
TheLittleSongbird25 December 2014
It is a shame as the cast are capable, the characters are timeless and the Universal monster/horror films have mostly been entertaining. House of Dracula is not that bad and does have quite a few good things, but it was an example of a film that showed so much potential but didn't fully live up to it.

Starting with the good things, the sets are sumptuous and wonderfully Gothic, likewise with the costumes and there is great use of shadowy lighting. The music is very haunting, with inspired use of Beethoven's moonlight sonata, though it occasionally sounds as if it was borrowed from other films. Two scenes are quite effective, the Moonlight sonata scene, which was telling in its psychological eeriness, and the Wolf Man transformation scene. Some of the acting is good, Onslow Stevens sharing the acting honours as an, as said, Jekyll and Hyde character that he attacks with menace and pathos. Lon Chaney Jnr. once again gives a very deeply felt performance as Talbot/ Wolf Man, though not as good as he was in The Wolf Man and Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man. Skelton Knaggs makes a creepy appearance albeit a brief one and Jane Addams is an enticing and touching Nina. Martha O' Driscoll is both attractive and sympathetic.

Not all the acting works on the other hand. John Carradine has the look, the suavity and visual eeriness for Dracula but not the sinister evil or aristocratic charm, he's somewhat too understated in the role. Glenn Strange has literally nothing to do and spends his entire window-dressing-like screen time looking confused as to where he was. The normally good Lionel Atwill is wasted and lacks energy. The photography has its moments but lacks refinement overall, a lot of the editing looking like it was done in haste. The used footage of Chaney in Ghost of Frankenstein and Boris Karloff in Bride of Frankenstein looked good, but that it was stock was obvious. The special effects are rather cheesy-looking, by today's standards and I imagine also for back then too, usually that's forgivable to me but not so much when the film is technically faulty elsewhere. The script is muddled as a result of trying to do too much, the direction is by-the-numbers and the characters are a case of nice to see them but little's done with them, that they don't share a scene together is a huge missed opportunity. It's the story that suffers the most however, the actual storyline is a tired one but it's also one that's too hurriedly paced to compensate for the too short running time as well as being over-plotted and underwritten. There are a number of plot strands but none of them really are explored, only Chaney's battle with his conscience to a degree resonates. Finally the ending is so abrupt and rushed that it feels like a great big anti-climax.

Overall, an ambitious effort in using characters from three different settings to incorporate them into one big story and a noble effort but comes up short. Not terrible, not great, mixed feelings more like. 5/10 Bethany Cox
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6/10
An Overabundance of Monsters
gavin694211 August 2013
Count Dracula (John Carradine) and the Wolf Man (Lon Chaney Jr) seek a cure for their afflictions; meanwhile, a hunchbacked woman (Jane Adams), a mad scientist and Frankenstein's monster (Glenn Strange) have their own troubles.

Somebody at Universal thought it would be a good idea to combine Dracula, the Wolfman, Frankenstein's monster, a hunchback and basically a knockoff of Jekyll and Hyde. In theory, this sounds great -- why not pack the screen with monsters? More monsters, more fun. But actually doing it within the 67 minutes allotted and having a coherent plot... well, that is another matter entirely.

If you are watching the films in Universal's Dracula Legacy collection, this film comes after "Son of Dracula". It actually comes after "House of Frankenstein", but you would not know that from the way it is bundled. And it seems weird that Chaney shows up looking exactly like he did for his Dracula / Alucard role, only to return as Larry Talbot again. Mixing monsters and switching actors is confusing!

Then there is Dracula. Now, either you have Dracula wanting to be cured of his vampirism, which makes absolutely no sense, or the character is not actually Dracula but a baron as he claims in the beginning. If that is the case, it seems that the nobility are especially susceptible to becoming the undead. A pity.

To recap, if you want a variety of monsters running around a lab going crazy, this is a pretty good story. But if you actually want a film that makes sense, this probably is not the one for you -- it is just too packed with monsters to really develop a story. Overall, really fun but no depth. The story was probably written in 15 minutes.
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6/10
After 'House of Frankenstein'...where else???
jbirtel14 October 2002
Warning: Spoilers
Riding on the success of 'Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man', Universal came up with a script 'Wolf Man vs Dracula' that, on paper, was exciting (but no Frankenstein Monster). It included a great sequence toward the end where Dracula, as a giant bat, battles the Wolf Man inside the walls of Castle Dracula (some of that premise survived in the closing scenes of 'Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein'). And it was violent enough for the censors to raise a fuss that caused delays in re-writes (apparently from the Wolf Man's carnage on half of the village gendarmes at the climax). So it was shelved. Then Karloff returned to Universal Studios from Broadway's roadshow 'Arsenic and Old Lace'; and 'House of Frankenstein' was born.

Within the year, the same producer, writer and director were reunited for this follow-up. Chaney, Carrradine and Strange returned for their respected reprisals of the Wolf Man, Dracula and Frankenstein's Monster and were shoved in the background in favor of Onslow Steven's (excellent) portrayal of Dr Edelmann's 'Jekyll/Hyde type' character. And that's part of the problem because the writer(s) apparently felt that they had milked the 3 main Monsters dry, so the emphasis is put back on the (mad) scientist, along with (female) hunchback Jane Adams.

But it's still a fun ride! The settings are atmospheric and creepy, the music is appropriate (many themes rehashed from previous entries) and the acting is good considering the same inane dialogue the actors were required to deliver. Unfortunately the powers-to-be made such drastic cuts in the budget that footage from the ending of 'Ghost of Frankenstein' was stolen to fill in the final closing seconds (the original ending, as written, was staged in the catacombs beneath the laboratory, with the floor giving way to engulf Edelmann and the Monster). The only saving grace is that Universal made up for it by concluding the saga with 'Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein'.

Some nice moments makes a good 2nd feature to 'House of Frankenstein'.

5.5 out of 10! I still like it overall!
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8/10
Terrific Ghoul-fest
twanurit18 June 2002
This moody, creepy horror flick begins on a castle atop a cliff overlooking the sea, a great setting, as a vampire bat flies in and creeps toward a sleeping doctor (Onslow Stevens). The bat changes into a man known as Baron Latos, in reality Count Dracula (John Carradine). He seeks Dr. Edelmann's help to cure him of his vampirism. Eventually the good doctor also wants to help his hunchbacked nurse-assistant (Jane Adams), the Wolf Man (Lon Chaney), and Frankenstein's monster (Glenn Strange). But Dracula's trickery contaminates the doctor's blood, and he becomes a Jekyll/Hyde vampire himself. This is somewhat better than the prior year's "House of Frankenstein", being less episodic and more exciting visually. There's a haunting scene where Dracula tries to lure the second nurse (Martha O'Driscoll) into his world, where she is initially playing "Moonlight Sonata" on the piano, which soon gives way to terrifying music. Director Erle Kenton uses expressionistic shadows and eerie music to frame many sequences, including a wonderful montage sequence that the studio frequently used in their horror features. Two performers are of note: Stevens, with his wonderful voice, is at first sympathetic, then convincingly menacing. Adams, her beautiful face in alarming contrast to her twisted body, exhibits great pathos and sympathy. It all ends in a slam-bang climax, typical of 1940s Universal horror, a little abrupt, with footage borrowed from "The Ghost of Frankenstein" (1942). I hope Universal releases it soon on DVD (it was left out of their Double-Feature releases).
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Nice entry in Universal horror cycle...
Neil Doyle21 May 2001
This creepy sequel to 'House of Frankenstein', has a doctor (Onslow Stevens) trying to revive the monsters (Glenn Strange and Lon Chaney, Jr.) after becoming infected with the blood of Dracula.

All the atmospheric effects are present and there's a chilling performance by John Carradine whose gaunt appearance makes him a perfect choice for the Dracula part. The special effects involving his transformation are smoothly handled, as of course are the Wolfman's makeup change under the full moon. By this time, Universal had perfected many of these techniques and the effects are sometimes startlingly realistic. Lionel Atwill has a brief part as the village police chief and Martha O'Driscoll and Jane Adams provide the feminine interest.

But the main honors go to Onslow Stevens as the doctor who mistakenly inherits vampire tendencies--a sort of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde role that he does extremely well. A fright film that doesn't disappoint, entertaining all the way.
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5/10
The cure for your ills?
Spikeopath20 October 2010
House Of Dracula is out of Universal Pictures and is directed by Erle C. Kenton. It's written by Edward T. Lowe Jr and stars Lon Chaney Jr, John Carradine, Martha O'Driscol, Glenn Strange, Lionel Atwill, Jane Adams & Onslow Stevens.

It's a sequel to House Of Frankenstein that was released the previous year and again sees the three principal Universal monsters (Frankenstein's Monster, Count Dracula & The Wolf Man) thrust together. Plot basically involves Dracula (Carradine) & Larry Talbot/Wolf Man (Chaney Jr) turning up at Dr. Edelmann's (Stevens) mansion seeking a cure for their respective creature afflictions. Murder, blood and the unearthing of Frankenstein's monster ensues.

Well it's better than House Of Frankenstein at least, but it's still tired and weary. A commercial success at the box office, it marks the last hurrah for Universal's monster pictures before the creatures went off lampooning with comedy duos. The film clocks in at just 67 minutes so with that it doesn't out stay its welcome. While the additions of Adams as a " beautiful" hunchback assistant, and Edelmann going through a Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde like crisis prove to be entertaining ingredients in the bonkers monster stew.

Packed with flaws (both narratively and technically) that smacks of a rushed cash cow job, and unintentionally funny, House Of Dracula is watchable for Universal Monsters purists only. 5/10
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7/10
A small improvement over the last one
A year after the release of the average "House of Frankenstein", Universal released another Monster Mash where all their famous character would collide once again. "House of Dracula" would reunite Dracula, the Frankenstein's creature and the Wolf Man for what would be their final battle and will finally close an era for the studio. Directed once again by Erle C. Kenton, "House of Dracula" presents a slight but noticeable improvement over the previous film and delivers a better constructed (although still flawed) story that while far from perfect, is a more appropriate closure than the previous film.

The story ignores most of the events of the previous entry, "House of Frankenstein", and introduces a new angle to the story. Count Dracula (John Carradine), tired of having to hide during sunlight, asks help to the brilliant scientist, Dr. Edelman (Onslow Stevens), a physician famous for his research in biology. Edelman becomes fascinated by Dracula, and soon begins an experimental treatment, in the mean time, Larry Talbot (Lon Chaney Jr.), the Wolf Man, visits Edelman with the purpose of get rid of his curse. Soon Edelman realizes that Dracula is a monster that must be destroyed, but his own exposure to Dracula's blood is also developing a disease in him. The discovery of the Frankenstein's monster (Glenn Strange) in a nearby catacombs will bring more turmoil to the mind of the brilliant scientist.

After the previous clash of monsters, it is good to see the series going back to the roots and delivering an almost straight-forward Gothic horror returning to the dark pessimistic nature of this kind of films and moving away from the comic relief of the previous entries. The story (by Edward T. Lowe Jr.), has many interesting themes, as the contrast between Dracula and Talbot (both looking for a cure, but with different purposes) and Edelman's increasing madness. Probably among the most interesting themes is the inclusion of the character of Nina, a gorgeous but deformed woman who aids Dr. Edelman hoping to be cured of her condition.

Director Erle C. Kenton is back again and this time he finally captures the dark nature of these three characters, a nature that was apparently lost in the previous film. Despite the low-budget, Kenton crafts a Gothic horror that while simple, is quite effective, and even manages to present old partners such a these characters in a fresh way. While it's never on the level of the originals, "House of Dracula" recovers that charm that Universal Studios horror films used to have, and Kenton makes sure that at least for a last time the monsters receive a chance to shine.

The cast is very good this time, with Carradine, Chaney and Strange reprising their roles (although Strange's role is considerably smaller) with more enthusiasm than in the previous film. The addition of Onslow Stevens, Jane Adams and Martha O'Driscoll to the cast bring back the tragedy and the drama to the series, with Stevens giving a terrific performance as Dr. Edelman. A small cameo by Lionel Atwill and the presence of Skelton Knaggs as the creepy Steinmuhl complete one of the better cast Universal horror films has had in years.

"House of Dracula" is a nice addition to the series, specially after the mediocre "House of Frankenstein". It's nice to see Kenton back in form in a somewhat serious horror film, however, and while the plot is quite original, it suffers not only because of the budget, but because the film attempts to do a lot in a very short runtime with bad results. It's true that the characters have all very inventive story lines, but the film dedicates very few time for each of them to develop, and the film seems very rushed and disjointed.

While far from perfect, it's also far from being the worst of the series. "House of Dracula" is a nice closure to one of the best times for the horror genre, a time when ghosts and ghouls roamed the foggy nights, and mad scientists gave life to hideous monsters. Later the monsters would be back in "Bud Abbott & Lou Costello Meet Frankenstein" (1948), but that would be a whole different context. after the disappointing previous entries, it's easy to dismiss "House of Dracula", but give it a chance, and let the monster roam for a last time. 7/10
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7/10
Two are better than one, three better than two...but not always.
maxcellus4618 January 2006
The "House of Dracula" really has nothing new to offer in the way of chills or thrills or new twists on an already tired storyline. This film was made as a hasty sequel to the fairly better made "House of Frankenstein" from a year earlier. In "House of Dracula" you can see the factory like production values of 1945 taking their toll on an otherwise potentially scary movie. Stock footage from previous films in the series and then the ending from "Ghost of Frankenstein" used as the ending here just makes for an "el cheepo" flick. Therein lies the shame of the studio and the producer considering that they had top notch talent and merely wasted everybody's time and effort on a quick money return scheme. But that seems to have been the trend all throughout Hollywood at the end of WWII. This is what brought on some of those mindless SciFi pics of the 1950's with all their closeups of harmless lizards in order to make them appear as dinosaurs. The days of James Whale and Val Lewton, to mention two, were over as far as creating real mood and atmosphere in this genre. Keep in mind also that the makeup genius, Jack Pierce, who actually did medical research in order to create all of our favorites, was summarily fired right after this particular film was released. A lesser capable makeup man by the name of Bud Westmore was then hired as the head of this department at Universal, soon to be Universal-International. Not to denigrate Mr. Westmore's ability but horror films were just not his forte. OK, to watch or not to watch. Watch this film but only as part of the chronological order of the Frankenstein series and you'll see how this all ended up as comic fodder for Abbott & Costello.
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6/10
Universal does the Monster Mash
Lee Eisenberg25 October 2005
In one of the many times when all three major monsters meet, "House of Dracula" has the count (John Carradine) arriving at Dr. Edelman's (Onslow Stevens) house to request the doctor's help in getting rid of the vampire curse. Ha ha! You didn't really think that Dracula had THAT in mind, did you? Of course not! He wants to get slinky with the doctor's dazzling assistant Miliza Morrelle (Martha O'Driscoll). Oh, and Larry Talbot, aka The Wolf-Man (Lon Chaney), begs the doctor's help in getting rid of the werewolf curse. Oh well, at least he was honest about it. Oh, and they find Frankenstein's monster (Glenn Strange) along the way.

A worthy effort, although my favorite combination of all the monsters is either "The Munsters" or 1986's cult film "The Monster Squad".
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I Bid You Welcome
BaronBl00d23 July 2000
It is an open house for the Frankenstein monster, Dracula, and the wolfman again in this follow-up to House of Frankenstein, again directed by Erle C. Kenton. Though not as polished and exciting as HOF, House of Dracula is by no means a disappointment. This time round a kindly doctor played by Onslow Stevens agrees to help not only Dracula with blood transfusions and the like but also Larry Talbot, played again by Lon Chaney. Assisted by his hunchbacked nurse, nicely played by Jane Adams, and his other nurse, the luscious Martha O'Driscoll, Stevens works hard to help both monsters with success and failure. John Carradine again plays Dracula, and he is enigmatic. The story deals mostly again with helping Talbot fight the curse of the full moon. Dracula's role is larger here than in HOF, and Carradine plays the vampire with subtlety. Glenn Strange is back as the monster, but his part is smaller than it was in HOF. As with most of Universal's horror pictures, there is a generous dose of eerie settings and dark atmospheres. A lot of fun!
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7/10
A Sentimental Favorite
HarryC1328 October 1999
This has one of the more unusual plots I've seen in a horror film, but it's based on good, solid Universal Studios fare: Lots of monsters, pretty heroine, torch-bearing villagers. But my favorite part is Larry Talbot (The Wolf Man) searching for the cure for his lycanthropy. After dying in the original "Wolf Man," he is resurrected and wanders through "Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man" and "House of Frankenstein" searching for a way to end his affliction. I think first-time viewers will find his search in this particular movie very interesting.
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7/10
Monster Free-for-all; SPOILERS
zetes3 October 2001
Warning: Spoilers
This is quite an entertaining B-flick in the Universal Horror series featuring Dracula, the Wolfman, and Frankenstein's Monster. The plot revolves around Dracula (John Carradine) and Larry Talbot, the wolfman (Lon Chaney Jr.), separately visiting a revolutionary doctor. They both ask him if they can be cured, and the doctor attempts to devise a way for each. Beneath the doctor's castle, they find Frankenstein's Monster buried in mud (this is apparently a reference to the previous movie in the Frankenstein series).

Of course, if things had went as planned, the movie would have turned out incredibly boring. Instead, Dracula can't suppress his appetite, and the doctor is eventually infected, by a blood transfusion, with vampirism. As a semi-vampire, the doctor goes insane and awakens Frankenstein's Monster. As with all of the Universal Horror series, the ending is completely unsatisfactory. A beautiful woman with a hunchback, one of the doctor's two assistants, has a particularly gruesome end. Plus, you just have to feel sorry for Frankenstein's Monster in this film - he's awake for around two minutes, kills one police officer, and then yet another building (what's this, the fifth now?) collapses on top of him and is consumed by flames. It is also unfortunate that the great character created in The Wolf Man (1941), Larry Talbot, is really reduced here. People underrate that film and Chaney's performance in it. Here, he would be justifiably criticized as wooden. All in all, though, it's a pretty fun movie at just 68 minutes. A nice waste of time. 7/10.
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6/10
the final monster film until they were revived for Abbott and Costello
MartinHafer30 March 2006
This is the least of the Universal horror films featuring any of the "Big 3"==Frankenstein's monster, Dracula and the Wolfman. Despite John Carradine's Dracula being killed pretty thoroughly in the last film, he's back again. And, Frankenstein is here as well. However, what's totally new is the type of doctor they meet. This guy is interested in helping the monsters to become good respectable citizens and sets about ridding them of their evil ways. Of course, like always, the good intentioned doctor is a real idiot and he really is doing Dracula's evil bidding--as he wants Frankenstein revived so he can serve him in his plan for global evil. Sure. Whatever. Anyway, apart from the odd plot, there's really nothing new here. It's a decent film sure to please fans of the genre, but is about the most skipable monster movie Universal made featuring any of the Big 3.
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4/10
Ouch!!!!
cj183709 March 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I've been a classic horror fan my entire life. Many nights stretched until the early hours of the morning watching the Universal films on "Horror Incorporated" and "Creature Feature Night". Sadly, I viewed this film in the early evening and yet it still almost put me to sleep.

I don't think I've ever seen a "horror" picture where everything was so matter of fact. Dr. Edelmann doesn't seem to believe in the supernatural, yet before long he's medically treating Dracula and watching Larry Talbot change into the Wolfman while hardly blinking an eye. He and Talbot discover the Frankenstein monster like it's an everyday occurrence. Edelmann is all fired up to bring the monster back to life, but after Talbot, Miliza and Nina protest he's like "Aww, you're right. No big deal". After realizing Dracula's treachery, he opens the Count's coffin to sunlight and POOF!, he's gone, just like that.

The only person who didn't appear to just be phoning in her lines was Jane Adams as Nina. Her reward is getting bounced off the hump in her back into a pit by the Frankenstein Monster at the end of the film...and no one even tries to rescue her! She, Dr. Edelmann and the Monster all perish, while Talbot and Miliza casually leave the castle.

Definitely the low point for Universal during it's classic horror years.
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4/10
Disappointment
Smoreni Zmaj27 May 2017
Nonsense rarely seen. Acting, directing, camera and other technicalities, all are on level we are expecting from this kind of movies. Really decent, I can not complain. But screenplay is unbelievably bad. They crammed bunch of monsters and forced them together in same story. They did not stick to original legends, they did not attach to previous movies, they did not even think of some new original plot. They simply threw in bunch of cliché horror patterns into rush overladen story, that is not either original, or tense or fun at all. There's no good plot nor denouement. It simply starts, lasts some time and ends without any logical sense. It's like they cut off random parts of previous monster movies and then shuffled them and glue them together. What author did here is not writing, it's recycling and amateurish and lousy done. Movie is not unwatchable, but it is complete waste of time.

4/10
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