Blood for Dracula (1974) Poster

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Gory, sexy, witty and political updating of the classic tale.
Panar1on26 April 2003
'Blood for Dracula' began shooting the day principal photography for 'Flesh for Frankenstein' finished, and utilised the same three lead players: Udo Kier (as Dracula), Arno Jeurging (as his manservant) and Joe Dallesandro (as a socially conscious and randy farmhand). In comparison to the earlier film, 'Blood for Dracula' may appear somewhat more restrained, with less of the delirium and dementia which made it's sister movie so memorable, but in place of the outrageous black humour and OTT excesses it possesses a more subtle sense of satire and a frequently beautiful and poetic visual style.

Just a quick recap of the story: Dracula, who is here only able to feed from the blood of virgin girls, is forced to leave his ancestral home in Transylvania (apparantly he's exhausted the supply there) and travel to Italy with his manservant, under the pretence of seeking a 'suitable wife'. They come across a family of supposedly noble stock, whose daughters are not in fact as pure as they might seem to be. This is due to the presence of a hot-headed young farmhand, whose political ideologies have been much influenced by the recent revolution in Russia...

Morrissey's first image in the film is a mischievously existential sequence that immediately works to blur the distinction between the realm of the film and that of the filmmakers. Dracula, a bone white albino, is seen applying black dye to his hair, rouge to his cheeks and ochre to his lips in an effort to appear more robust and more human. The obvious parallel is that of an actor being made up in preparation for a scene; Dracula's 'scene' is the rest of the movie and therefore we do not see this process repeated. Opening with such an introspective shot, one that is entirely outside the narrative and which so successfully marries the worlds before and behind the camera, denotes the artistic sensibility which will lend the film a modernist flavour and throw the hokier aspects of vampire lore into sharp relief. Here Dracula merely has an aversion to sunlight, garlic and crucifixes, rather than crumbling to dust at the sight of them; if outside during the day he only shields his face with his hat, and in his room at the inn he simply takes down the cross on the wall and puts it away in a drawer. It's a good example of how rules of legend as interpreted through iconic cinema (think Bela Lugosi repulsed by a crucifix, or Max Shreck dissolving in the dawn's light) are not binding in any sense, and in any case such constraints on the character would sit badly with the plot of the film. The director's personal touch allows him to express his ideas with more structure and balance, which makes for a more satisfying and coherent picture.

In 'Flesh for Frankenstein', Morrissey used the basic set up of the Frankenstein story, itself heavy with Freudian overtones in the context of Man attempting to create life independently of Woman, to showcase and satirise a gallery of corrupting behaviour and sexual deviancy. Here the contemporary relevance is the political subtext of the Dracula myth. The Count as a wealthy aristocrat is presented as both a literal and metaphorical vampire: he drains the blood of innocents in order to perpetuate his existence, and his social class figuratively leeches off the lower orders for it's own survival. His sickly pallor and physical frailty is both representative of his caste's dying influence and perhaps also a comment upon the debilitating results of long term inbreeding; a sharp contrast to the youthful strength and virility of Joe Dallesandro. The character of the latter is a dedicated communist who despises the Count for being, as he sees him, the wasted product of an archaic and fading tradition of social inequality, and the perception of aristocracy as decrepit and defunct extends to, and is reinforced by, the Italian family upon who's daughters the count has set his sights. Clearly once wealthy and influential they have now fallen on hard times and are under financial strain; the daughters work in the fields and gardens and the house is in need of repair and redecoration which they cannot afford. Hence the Mother's desire to marry one of her children into a moneyed lineage, in spite of such an unattractive groom and her daughters' unsuitability for his requirements, is an act of both base greed and snobbish ambition.

The film also makes great use of the power of human sexuality. One character early in the film remarks, upon hearing of the Count's intention to marry: 'A wife? He doesn't look up to it!' Indeed the key to Dracula's undoing is ultimately sex. He cannot drink the blood of non-virgins, yet is tricked several times into drinking the contaminated blood of the family's daughters, which leads to bouts of copious vomiting. His servant's somewhat erroneous belief that Italy is a good place to find a chaste wife, because of that countries Catholicism, demonstrates his unfortunate reliance on, and faith in, the upholding of old fashioned principles. The girls' unrestrained sexual familiarity with Dallesandro is indicative of their embracing of a more modern and unconcerned attitude to sex, where the crumbling social climate and values of their parent's generation have little bearing. When Dracula reveals that due to his families' 'traditions' he can only marry a virgin, the Marchesa knowingly tries to palm him off with her daughters, whom she knows are experienced, anyway. There is little genuine sense of honour about such duplicity; the motivation is wealth even at the expense of her children's happiness. Morrissey is always quick to savage the supposedly sacred community of the family; in 'Flesh for Frankenstein' it was blighted by incest and depravity, and here the briefly seen relationship between Dracula and his sister (also a vampire) is more touching and heartfelt than the caustic behaviour of the Di Fiore's toward one another.

The film remains to the end a coruscating and biting take on human values. At it's conclusion the enforced tyranny of an autocratic society has symbolically been put to a bloody end and supplanted by another: that of communist oppression. It is not a happy ending, perhaps because Dracula here is a much more pitiable and ambiguous character than generally depicted in other films. He does not communicate a sense of being an evil and vicious monster; he comes across as a weak and highly strung aesthete, delicate, sensitive and refined (the fact that he can only drink the uncontaminated blood of virgins is an extension of his discerning tastes and a genuine reflection of the traditional requirements of well-bred families in matters of marriage). Violence is abhorrent to him, yet ironically it is concomitant with his survival, whereas Dallesandro's character is brutish, self righteous and far more morally dubious (he more or less rapes the youngest daughter so that Dracula cannot now feed from her impure blood).

The key performances here are perfectly realised and genuinely involving. Kier captures the lethargy and malaise of the ailing Count with inimitable panache, although in order to shed the necessary weight for the role he simply didn't eat anything and was therefore actually too weak to move most of the time anyway! Arno Jeurging here plays an authoritative, arrogant and controlling servant who is worlds away from the submissive and degenerate Otto character in 'Flesh for Frankenstein', while Maxime McKendry imparts a very real sense of desperation in her part as a declining aristocrat grasping at straws in a changing economic climate. Dallesandro here seems as out of place as he was in FFF, with a hilariously anachronistic Brooklyn accent despite supposedly being a second-generation servant to the family. You could look at this as the Director articulating his indifference to the conventional importance of verisimilitude, or merely the inclusion of a bankable international star for the purpose of returns at the box office (I suppose it depends on how cynical you're feeling). Whatever, Dallesandro endows his character with the sense of preening and aggressive self-importance that is vital for the film, where the intention is to have no clearly demarcated hero and villain. The girls are all achingly beautiful and shed their clothes at almost every opportunity, while two notable directors, Vittorio De Sica and Roman Polanksi (!) have brief parts as the Merchese and a cunning villager respectively. Jeurging's mother also plays a small role as a customer at the inn.

Gore wise, although the film, as noted, somewhat lacks the unrelenting intensity of FFF's flying entrails and severed heads, it is still not for the squeamish. The protracted scenes of Dracula throwing up unsuitable blood into the bath are pretty gross, as is his lying on the floor to sup at the remains of the youngest daughter's hymen after Dallesandro takes matters into his own hands. The conclusion takes the grotesquery to the heights of blackly comic inevitability, with a mess of severed limbs and a double puncture with a single stake. However, the elegance of the cinematography, despite the low budget, renders these scenes almost as beautiful in their own perverse way as the long establishing shots of the Italian countryside.

This film, like it's predecessor, remains a genuine cult classic, and in my opinion they are both valuable documents of the prevalent artistic attitudes of their day and two of the most important, literate, well composed and intelligent horror films of the last thirty years. Maybe someday Morrissey and Kier may make another. Here's hoping.
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Great, beautiful and artistic ...TRASH!
Coventry11 October 2004
This very free and rather deranged interpretation of Bram Stoker's legendary Dracula tale by Paul Morrissey is one of the best independent vampire stories I've seen so far. The sheer brilliance of this film completely lies in the characterization of the bloodsucking count. Dracula no longer is a vile and overruling monster here, but a sickly and almost pathetic weakling. He and his assistant (Renfield with brains!) flee from the Romanian castle to settle in rural Italy where families are believed to be particularly religious. This is essential to the count because he can only feed on virgins' blood. The count and his assistant are homed by a family with 4 four marriageable daughters, pretending to be wealthy. However, the girls aren't as 'pure' as they're supposed to be (these cuties like to screw around with the revolutionary servant boy) and the impure blood of the girls only causes to the count to get weaker. Despite of its filthy reputation, this film isn't that gory or nauseating. The finale is pretty blood-soaked but the film is overall more absurd and eccentric than it is gore. Blood for Dracula is an outstanding trash-film! The humor is black as the night itself and the substance is essential viewing for every cult cinema admirer. Udo Kier is terrific as the needy count while pretty boy and Morrissey regular Joe Dallesandro has the time of his life portraying the manly skirt-chaser. The budget of Blood for Dracula was low (almost non-existing), yet the set pieces and atmosphere-creating elements are great! The musical score in particular is beautiful and contains a few gripping piano compositions.

In conclusion, Blood for Dracula is outrageous fun and a must-see for everyone whose tired of the same old unsatisfying horror films. It might not fit for all audiences but I'm sure the more developed genre lovers will love seeing Udo Kier licking a virgin's blood of the floor. Equally recommended is the Morrissey variant on that other classic tale, Frankenstein. That film is even more extravagant and a whole lot nastier. You can either take that as a recommendation or a warning.
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A campy sexy treat
victor77548 October 2002
I love this film.

It plays like a fantasy for decent perverts. That may sound like an oxymoron. You have 3 sexy daughters alone with their mother at some European manor. Of course there is the groundskeeper Joe Dallesandro, the hot stud who deflowers the "virgins", well, all except one daughter who seems to be holding out.

Udo Kier plays the perverted ill Dracula who needs virgin blood to gain strength. Guess who's coming to dinner at the manor house? One problem; he needs virgin blood to survive. Anything else proves lethal.

Young Joe has taken care of two of the daughters therefore Dracula gets a little sicker when he takes of their blood.

Does he get the youngest and prettiest who is the Virgin or does Joe take care of that as well.

Not big on budget. Funny at times. It is actually well filmed. Very campy and nasty.
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Udo vs. Joe: Volume 2
Tromafreak31 December 2009
Here we are, the end of 2009, and Vampires have found their way back in style. Well, hot damn for them. We all knew it would happen sooner or later. Since Bela Lugosi redefined exactly what a Vampire is, back in the 30's, these guys are here to stay. However, the current crop of Vamp-entertainment has me a little worried. Twilight, eh? The Vampire Diaries? Oh yeah, I forgot, everything has to be targeted towards children now. I hate to admit it, but the so-called golden age of the 30's is a tad slow for my taste, and of course the fact that I'm an adult stands between me and the latest Vamp-craze. Fortunately, there was a period in between where they got it right. Enter Paul Morrissey, and his pal, Andy Warhol. The year is 1973, and rebelliously independent director, Paul Morrissey just wrapped up Andy Warhol's Frankenstein. Days later, Morrissey starts filming the logical next step, Andy Warhol's Dracula. Udo Kier (Mark Of The Devil) plays Count Dracula, and Joe Dallesandro (Andy Warhol's Trash) plays a guy who gets laid all the time. In this version of the legend, Dracula can only consume the blood of virgins, which is unfortunate for Udo because Romania has been sucked dry, so, now , the Count is headed to Italy in search of a nice, rich family, with nice, wholesome daughters. Once a destination is chosen, Dracula has high hopes of taking one of these pristine, young ladies back to Romania to marry (drain dry). The parents also think this is a swell idea, and the girls aren't putting up much of a fight. Only one problem, Joe Dallesandro is the live-in handyman, which means, yep, you guessed it, not a virgin in the house. Tough luck, Drac. Now would be the time to take this hopeless mission elsewhere, because if Joe finds out there's a Vampire about... It's on!!! Blood For Dracula is every bit the Masterpiece as Flesh For Frankenstein. Each one, a dismal, morbid work of art, although, this one is a bit more on the mean-spirited side. Udo Kier's portrayal of Count Dracula is so accurate, as if he were born to play the role. And Joe Dallesandro is always entertaining, with his acting issues and what not. Anyone out there who wants in on the latest Vampire craze, who isn't a pre-teen girl, HBO's Trueblood may be worth a look. And for the schlock lovers, you may want to check out Chris Seaver's latest masterpiece, Taintlight. although still semi-unknown, Paul Morrissey's version of Dracula just might be the definitive edition. Not bad for a guy who didn't do Horror. If you ask me, I could have totally gone for a few more of these. Imagine, the possibilities were endless. Maybe an Andy Warhol's Wolfman, or how about an Andy Warhol's Mummy? No, that would be stupid... I got it!! Andy Warhol's Jekyll & Hyde!! 10/10
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Pretty funny.(**Spoilers**)
HumanoidOfFlesh13 October 2003
Warning: Spoilers
Paul Morrissey's "Blood for Dracula" is definitely a cult classic.Udo Kier is excellent as a Dracula.He can't suck the blood of anyone but a virgin or he vomits.In one outrageous scene he licks the blood of a virgin off the floor.The film is about as sleazy and politically incorrect as you can get.There is plenty of soft-core sex in this one plus incredibly gory climax when Dracula is dismembered.There is also a lovely cameo by Roman Polanski("Rosemary's Baby","The Tenant").Check it out in pair with its companion piece "Flesh for Frankenstein"(1974).
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Good...for laughs
preppy-312 April 2005
Count Dracula (Udo Kier) can only drink the blood of virgins or he becomes violently ill. He comes upon a family with a bunch of virgin daughters. He plans to have each of them but the family's horny gardener (Joe Dellesandro) is after them too...for sex!

Silly but you just can't stop watching. Like it's companion piece ("Andy Warhol's Frankenstein") the story is silly with over the top acting and gore. Kiers convulsions after drinking the blood of non-virgins is SO disgusting they're hilarious. And (in the X rated version) there are some fairly explicit sex scenes between Dellesandro and the daughters. And Dracula's death at the end is just great! Silly and stupid but very funny. Try to catch the X rated version.
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One hell of a fun comedy horror film
tonymurphylee4 July 2008
In this retelling of the story of Dracula, the world's most famous vampire (Udo Kier, in a breathtaking and charismatic role as the count) lives in rapid deterioration in Romania with his watcher, Anton. Dracula is nearing death due to the fact that he needs the blood of a virgin in order to survive as tainted blood makes him deeply ill. Dracula decides to travel to Italy after burying his sister because Anton tells him that there are many religious girls there who value their virginity and do not have sex until marriage. The plan makes sense, but problems arise when Dracula and Anton take shelter in the home of a religious family consisting of a greedy and thoughtless wife, a bitter husband, their four daughters, and their communist worker (played by the consistently memorable Joe Dallesandro). The plan is to pretend to be an aristocrat looking for a virgin bride, but issues arise when Dracula discovers that the daughters are not as innocent and as virginal as they are reputed to be, thanks to their worker, in this bizarre and extremely bloody vampire fable.

Excuse me for seeming rather melodramatic for saying this, but this has got to be one of the most depressing horror films I think I have ever seen. The idea of Dracula being a terrifying and intimidating demon of a human being is completely altered here. Dracula is no longer the great monster that legend states, but rather a frail and deteriorating creature who is weak and pitiful. Call me crazy, but to me this idea is truly heartbreaking. This is a very tragic, pessimistic, and cruel film, and watching it is like watching a weak old man slowly bleed to death in a creek after getting in a bicycle accident. It is basically the mental equivalent, and as a result I would highly suggest that folks who aren't privy to films about tragedies better steer clear of this. For everyone else, however, who is a 70s grindhouse horror fan, fans of erotic horror cinema, and fans of Euro-trash, there is a lot here to recommend. For starters, Udo Kier as Dracula. Oh my god can this man tug at the heartstrings. His performance as Dracula is as pitiful, feeble, and tortured as you can ever imagine. Say what you will about his theatrical line delivery, but I found myself tearing up just looking at the guy. The opening scene in which we watch him cover his old frame with make-up is one of my favorite opening scenes in horror. It is sad, it is tranquil, and it is classy all at once. Udo Kier has such gentle and expressive eyes that help give the character a sense of lost humanity that I found incredibly poignant.

Arno Juerging as Anton is also astounding. He allows his character to be somewhat charming and timid while still allowing him to show a vicious tendency. He's an unusually memorable aspect of the film that certainly helps to differentiate this picture from other films of it's nature. Joe Dallesandro is a lot funnier and has a lot more fun with his role here than in the past, but above all he just looks great on camera regardless of the quality of film stock. He has such a wonderful presence here, and his character is a lot more interesting and clever than you would expect from this type of role. Above all, however, he's a hero who you don't feel entirely comfortable rooting for. He's a main character whom the writer doesn't mind showing you his sleazy side. He's not an entirely likable protagonist, and I always appreciate when filmmakers have the balls to do that. It worked in 2009 with District 9, and it works just as brilliantly here. The musical score by Claudio Gizzi is one of the great haunting horror film scores of the 70s. This score, as well as his equally powerful score in Flesh For Frankenstein, are two of my favorite music scores of all time. It fits the sadness of the film like a glove.

This is one of my favorite vampire films and one of my favorite films of it's kind. It's not going to appeal to everyone, especially the easily offended, but it is a tremendous piece of horror filmmaking that I personally think deserves it's place in film history. Best of all, it is a vampire film that, like the 2008 Swedish film Let the Right One In as well as the 1996 actioner From Dusk Till Dawn, follows all the basic rules in vampire lore. This film also includes a cameo by Roman Polanski, and to this day I think it's one of the funniest and most intelligent cameo appearances of all time. What more can I really say? This is a cult classic of the highest caliber. It's beautifully shot, it's evenly paced, it's gory as hell, it's genuinely erotic, and it's not afraid to break your heart. If you are a fan of cult horror and you haven't seen this, you are seriously missing out.
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BaronBl00d30 July 2004
Not nearly as disgusting as its closely made forerunner Flesh for Frankenstein, Blood for Dracula has some nice, stylistic moments, excellent period piece settings and costumes, wild overacting from Udo Keir as Dracula(subdued though when compared with his performance as Dr. Frankenstein) and a non-performance by Joe Dallesandro, a sluggish pace at times and, of course, lots of gratuitous sex scenes. Dracula must go south for his health and find a virgin(for he can only drink the blood of a virgin girl). He chooses Italy and finds a family with three beautiful, unwed daughters all professing innocence of man. A swarthy gardener(Dallesandro) works there. Add two and two and you have the basic premise of the film. For me, and let me say that I get what camp is and what the filmmakers were trying - TRYING - to do, the best part of this film is easily the brief cameo of Roman Polanski as a man in the pub playing a game of do-what-I-do. Polanski has brilliant comic timing, and he reinforces my opinion that he was and could have been a very good actor. I am thankful he still directs though. As for Blood of Dracula, it will definitely take a bite out of your time.
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The blood of these whores is killing me.
lastliberal30 March 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Udo Kier has 180 roles to his credit. Most recently he was in Grindhouse and Rob Zombies Halloween. But, it is his roles in Andy Warhol's Frankenstein and this film that really show him at his campy best.

Here, he plays Count Dracula, a man we really feel sorry for, as he only has two weeks to live unless he can find a virgin's blood to drink. he travels to Italy with his manservant (Arno Juerging) to the château of a Marchese (Vittorio De Sica) who happens to have four daughters ranging from an old maid to a 14-year-old, and a gambling problem that has left him almost penniless. He welcomes the Count (and his wealth) to choose one of his daughters for marriage.

What he does not know is that the one servant he still has on staff (Joe Dallesandro) has been using more that rakes and shovels. He has a special tool that is admired by the two middle daughters and, suffice it to say, they are no longer virgins.

Count Dracula finds this out the hard way. Who knew that he was bulimic? He throws up a disgusting amount of blood after noshing on their necks. The servant figures out what is happening and rapes the 14-year-old to save her from the vampire. Isn't he a thoughtful guy? But, the spinster saves Dracula temporally until the servant used an ax to turn him into a quadriplegic before putting the stake through his heart. Despondent, the spinster falls on the stake also to be with her love forever.

What a sweet story of love.
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Brilliant - but can you take it?
Greensleeves17 September 2007
This film opens with a close up of Udo Keir, possessor one of the most beautiful male faces of the era, applying makeup in front of a mirror. The camera then reveals that being Count Dracula, like all vampires, he has no reflection! thus the humorous tone is set for the rest of the film. The dialogue is wild and delicious, helped along by hugely overstated accents of all kinds and exaggerated overacting and in many cases - no acting at all. The film is stunningly photographed and is often beautiful to look at when you can, but you may find it difficult to watch Dracula regurgitate gallons of impure (i.e. non-virgin) blood or watch him lick pure virgin blood from the floor. Much more easy on the eye is the sight of a naked Joe Dallesandro, the camera drinks it's fill of this guy and many close-ups of his amazing face fill the screen. There is also an excellent cameo from Roman Polanski who challenges Count Dracula to an amusing game in a bar. The climax is blood soaked and bizarre and like the whole movie, way over the top. A hugely entertaining film providing you have the stomach for it!
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Classic soft-core weirdness and one of the best Dracula movies ever made
squeezebox24 January 2003
Warning: Spoilers
Paul Morrissey's follow-up to his outrageous FLESH FOR FRANKENSTEIN is much more low key but superior in many ways, with a witty script, funny performances and some genuinely shocking moments. It's one of the few movies to successfully bridge the gap between the art house and the grindhouse. It is a sleazy American exploitation movie as much as it is an avant garde European art film.

Dracula (Udo Kier) has become weak and sick from a lack of pure blood and travels to Italy with his servant (Arno Jeurning) to find virgins, who's blood may revitalize him. He picks a family in financial trouble, assuming that they will welcome the marriage of one of their daughters to a wealthy stranger.

Unfortunately, the girls are far from virgins, regularly servicing handyman Joe Dallesandro, and Kier is unlucky enough to discover this only after feeding on them and violently puking their tainted blood back up in a pair of outlandishly gruesome sequences.

Slowly, the family begins to suspect who their new guest is, leading up to an outrageously gory finale in which Dallesandro dismembers Kier with a axe! Blood for Dracula (aka Andy Warhol's Dracula) is one of the oddest--and best--vampire movies ever made, with a sharp sense of humor and some nice satirical touches that raise it above the usual grindhouse fare with which it shares the spotlight.

Morrissey's direction and dialog is far more polished than what he displayed in his earlier films but the irreverent and off-the-cuff feel of Trash and Heat is intact. There is some second unit photography by Antonio Margheriti and the bloody make-up effects were provided by future Close Encounters and E.T. creator Carlo Rambaldi.

Highly recommended for fans of cult horror!
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Another must see Morrissey trash classic!
Infofreak28 April 2002
While I rate Paul Morrissey's 'Flesh For Frankenstein' just a little higher than this one, it is without a doubt a vampire trash classic, and highly recommended viewing. Morrissey once again teams the legendary Udo Kier ('The Story Of O', 'Suspiria') with Warhol superstar Joe Dallesandro, and the creepy Arno Juerging (Otto from '...Frankenstein'), and adds to the strong supporting cast Italian veteran Vittorio De Sica, and even a cameo from director Roman Polanski. '..Dracula' features a similar mixture of horror and camp to the earlier movie, but this time the emphasis is more on sex and decadence than gore and humour. Dallesandro's performance is below par as a Communist servant, but Kier once again excels in the title role, creating some genuine sympathy as the sickly, desperate Count who can't get enough "wer-gins" blood to sustain himself. 'Blood For Dracula' is essential viewing for all 1970s cult movie buffs.
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Cheap Exploitation
claudio_carvalho30 November 2016
In Transilvania, Count Dracula (Udo Kier) is weak and ill since he needs the blood of virgin girls to recover. His servant Mario Balato (Joe Dallesandro) suggests him to travel the Italy, a Catholic country were virginity is preserved to marriage, with his coffin. When they arrive at a small village, they learn that the Di Fiore family is completely broken and has four virgin daughters. Mario contacts the Marquee Di Fiore (Vittorio De Sica) and his greedy wife (Maxime McKendry) invites them to stay in their manor and introduces their daughter Esmeralda (Milena Vukotic), Saphiria (Dominique Darel), Rubinia (Stefania Casini) and Perla (Silvia Dionisio). Soon Dracula finds that Saphiria and Rubinia are not pure since they are lovers of the Marquee's servant Anton (Arno Juerging). Meanwhile Anton suspects that Dracula is a vampire.

"Blood for Dracula" is a cheap exploitation of Count Dracula by Paul Morrisey. The black humor is not for all tastes and this trash film is sick in many moments, but cult. Maybe the greatest surprise is the name of Vittorio De Sica in the cast. My vote is four.

Title (Brazil): "Sangue para Drácula" ("Blood for Dracula")
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Although most Warhol films are god awful this one I enjoyed and own!
ihatecyberbullies31 March 2004
A well done film and Warhol's best improvement at making a film than just showing people with skin and fornicating all the time as whenever I saw his flicks it drove me nuts as it was so damn twisted! Of course we have Joe Dallesandro who plays a character who works for a mansion and molests some of the women there but ends up being a hero in the end and his acting is starting to improve as he was so awful in his past work (Probably he was getting off of drugs at this time) and he moved on to acting in non-Warhol films afterwards and doing well for himself. Scream king Udo Kier is great as Dracula and got alot of fans from this film. A film worth checking out and done in Italy where the horror population really lies for films.
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Are you a wergin?
bergma15@msu.edu24 October 2005
I have mixed feelings about this movie. For starters, It's a goddamn Andy Warhol production. In addition, most of the actors and actresses are pretty hammy (for example it has a "Italian" family where the dad has what sounds like an Italian accent, the mother sounds British, two of the daughters sound German, and the gardener is obviously from Jersey).

Udo Kier continues to yuck it up as the title character after playing Baron Frankenstein in "Flesh for Frankenstein" this film's sister picture. Udo is obviously enjoying playing a complete and total ham and vomits up blood as well as any I've seen. Is he the glue that holds the picture together???? Not really. The whole thing is basically a vehicle for shameless (and I stress shameless) sex and violence, some of which good old Udo takes part in. The flick also has some pretty cheesy dialog. One of my favorites is when Joe Dallesandro tells two of the daughters (after having sex with them) that he'd "like to rape the hell out of" their 14 year old sister. After this, he says he'd love her right and treat her good. What the hell? In my book, raping the hell out of and then loving up right are two totally different things.

However, this little flick does have its shining moments in spite of itself. There are some funny moments in the film and I think that they weren't really taking it that seriously, so it has that campy feel. In the end I think that it's good points and bad points strike even, so I recommend watching when you're feeling in that "I want to watch something so bad, it could actually be kind of good" mood.

Film fans should also look for the Roman Polanski cameo. He plays a game against Count Dracula's aide in the restaurant scene.
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Annoying Dracula 'classic'
jimbobnoneck30 March 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Bananas age better than this trainwreck of a movie. You know those soft porn movies that Cinemax airs really late at night?? They're better than this.

I suppose it was audacious and cutting-edge in '74, but now it's just silly and boring. You keep waiting for it to get better but it never does. The parts that could be funny never follow through on their potential. (the green light they shine on Drac's face when he realized the blood he's just sucked out of another pathetic daughter's neck is kinda funny, tho. And the only laugh the whole movie got out of me.) The sex is even boring. The women are vague and too willowy. The studly farmhand boorish and bland.

Don't waste your time.

Total, pretentious claptrap.
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Strange Film.
This has to be the strangest of all Dracula movies. A camp, terminally ill Count Dracula goes to Italy to find virgins, whom he needs to feed from if he is to survive. He targets a family with three young daughters He arouses the suspicions of a randy servant who is having an affair with the two eldest sisters. The emphasis is on ridicule of the whole Dracula legend rather than scares and the film is loaded with kinky sex and features perhaps the nastiest axe killing is cinema history. The cast barely keep a straight face, especially Udo Kier who goes barmy as Dracula. This stomach-turning brew is an acquired taste and in way too long but Horror Fans with a sense of humour may enjoy it. A bit weary but worthwhile. Not for the squemish. My Rating - 6 Out Of 10.
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Dreadful, but not in the way a horror movie should be
rob3031625 April 2005
This wasn't as bad as "Flesh for Frankenstein," which was so abysmal I couldn't bring myself to comment on it, but it's a bad, bad, terrible, horrendous movie. What makes it all the worse is that it has a terrific theme...or would have had, but the script was so atrociously written that every socialist subtext was forced screaming to the front to beat you over the head. That said, a terrible script doesn't excuse acting as bad as this. The 'actors' are about as convincing as the housewife and the delivery man in your favorite skin flick. And in a way, this is a skin flick--it's a feeble attempt to infuse promiscuous sex into a story originally focusing on the Victorian demonization of sex. In capable hands, it could have worked. These were not capable hands. In my own humble opinion, every copy of this movie should be destroyed.
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Strange, but Weirdly Appetizing
patorange30 July 2018
I was intrigued when I heard about Andy Warhol producing 'Blood for Dracula,' and 'Flesh for Frankenstein.' I planned on watching both of them, starting with 'Blood for Dracula.' This movie is just very entertaining, strange, and artistic. The story is like no other Dracula film. With Udo Kier as Dracula this was bound to be good for me. I first saw Udo in Gus Van Sant's 'My Own Private Idaho,' (which many people probably had the same experience as me.) I thought he was good at first sight. Then I watched an interview with director Gus Van Sant, where he was talking about first seeing Udo in 'Flesh for Frankenstein,' and 'Blood for Dracula.' Naturally, I had to see them. It was exciting to know that this movie existed. So this was interesting. I don't think it was great, I don't think it could've been better, it's just good the way it is. You just kind of have to see it yourself.
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Beautiful Looking but Rather Dull
Michael_Elliott24 July 2018
Blood for Dracula (1974)

** (out of 4)

Count Dracula (Udo Kier) and his servant (Joe Dallesandro) head toward Italy where the Count needs a bride. it turns out that Dracula is quite ill so not any woman will work. No sir, he actually needs a virgin but finding one won't be too easy.

Paul Morrissey's BLOOD FOR DRACULA and FLESH FOR FRANKENSTEIN were two films that I first saw as a rather young kid. Yeah, I was probably too young to be watching either of them but I didn't care for them. I decided to revisit them much later in life and I found FLESH FOR FRANKENSTEIN to be just about everything a fan of exploitation could want. When that film was a hit there's no question that a Dracula tale was logical but I still think this one doesn't work.

I should point out that this is a beautiful looking film with some wonderful costume designs as well as locations that just leap off the screen. The cinematography is quite good and there's no doubt that Morrissey has created a great looking picture that is well-made. The only problem is that we've seen this vampire film way too many times before and the added sleaze just doesn't really do much.

Whereas FLESH FOR FRANKENSTEIN went over-the-top in its use of gore and sleaze, that's not the case here. This film is a lot more mature, a lot more arthouse and it seems for the most part that they were trying to make a serious horror picture. There's nothing wrong with that except the film really drags with its 104-minute running time. Both Kier and Dallesandro are good in their roles and there's plenty of blood and nudity but it just isn't very entertaining.
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Red Revenge
Cineanalyst16 June 2018
Filmed after "Flesh of Frankenstein" (1973), by the same director, Paul Morrissey, and much of same cast and crew, as well as, again, being advertised as produced by pop-art celebrity Andy Warhol, "Blood for Dracula" is only slightly amusing as a vampire burlesque, but is of more interest for its sexual and political allegory.

As comedy, I prefer the Dracula-related parodies "The Dance of the Vampires," a.k.a. "The Fearless Vampire Killers" (1967), directed by Roman Polanski, who has a cameo in this film's tavern scene, and "Love at First Bite" (1979). Some of "Blood for Dracula" is funny, or at least absurd. I like the opening mirror scene where Dracula dyes his hair black. In Bram Stoker's novel, the Count's hair also changed from white to black, but there was no indication that he dyed it that way. And there certainly was no reason for him, as in this film, to do so before a mirror, which, of course, doesn't cast his reflection. This Count's vegan dietary restrictions, his distaste for Italian food, the actors' stilted performances and accents that are all over the place also add to the campiness. (What neorealist filmmaker Vittorio De Sica is doing among the cast in this assuredly non-realist film, I don't know.) The blood vomiting and the Grand Guignol finale are grotesquely over the top, and the nudity and sex scenes place the production firmly within the exploitation genre. Overall, the film's production values are good, the musical score is pleasant, and the cinematography has some standout moments, including Dracula's tracking close-up shot from a wheelchair.

Although this Dracula is, unfortunately I think, part of the trend that gained momentum in the 1970s for sympathetic vampires, as well as being in the suave Count tradition of Bela Lugosi, he's not as wimpy as Hammer's vampires. Udo Kier's Dracula is sickly, uses a wheelchair and isn't especially physically strong, but, unlike Hammer's vamps, he doesn't roll over and die from a bit of daylight or the sight of a cross. His main weakness here is his restriction to the blood of virgins, which is proving more difficult in the sexually-promiscuous modern age, hence his feeble condition. "Blood for Dracula" isn't really an adaptation of Stoker's novel, but this bit regarding virgin blood does indirectly rework one of the central themes from the book. As many have claimed, Stoker's "Dracula" is subtextually about venereal disease (especially, syphilis, which may've affected Stoker himself). The vampire represented the carrier of VD, who polluted the blood and sexual purity of Englishwomen. "Blood of Dracula" reverses this, with Dracula being infected by the impurity of the blood of sexually-active female victims. His move to Italy also retains a bit of the book's invasion xenophobia, and it's humorously ironic because it's at the heart of Roman Catholicism, which, it turns out, is less concerned with chastity than is the Count.

Meanwhile, the character who would be expected to be the traditional hero is a rapacious communist, the Italian family's handyman, who also regularly has sex, consensual or not, with the two incestuous sisters of the family. He rails against Dracula's aristocracy and has a hammer and sickle painted on his room's wall. The pun of him having an axe to grind with the aristocratic Count, as he literally chases Dracula while wielding an axe is one of the film's best gags.

(Mirror Note: I already mentioned the amusingly-absurd through-the-mirror shot in the opening scene. There's also another mirror shot where one of the sisters discovers to her horror that Dracula casts no reflections.)
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Elegant perverse classic
adriangr13 October 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Blood For Dracula is a gorgeous looking piece of cinema that succeeds even though it has some real weaknesses

The story tells of Count Dracula coming to Italy to look for a virgin bride in an aristocratic family with four daughters. Sadly (for him), the first two daughters offered to him have already lost their virginity to the randy gardener. This much is predictable, but what awaits the remaining two girls makes for an interesting conclusion to the story.

The movie looks stunning. Whatever faults it has, the cinematography is not one of them. Beautifully shot on location in an ornate villa, every shot drips with elegance. The whole thing looks consistently lavish. It even has a delicate and wonderfully nuanced musical score. Not overly gory (a million miles from it's partner "Flesh For Frankenstien"), only a couple of pretty realistic blood-vomiting scenes and an over- the-top axe chopping conclusion would give the squeamish any trouble.

What lets things down here is the acting. All the cast look great, Udo Kier is effective as the ailing count, and Arno Juerging is hilarious as the manservant, but the rest of the performances are terrible. The four daughters are certainly beautiful but the way they read their lines is appallingly stilted and often very difficult to understand. And Joe Dallessandro provides his usual wooden performance, although he does contribute to the frequent and lengthy sex scenes. There is a LOT of (female) nudity in the movie, and even today it still seems quite excessive.

Apart from the excellent photography, the film shows little originality, but I particularly liked the budding friendship of Dracula and the prudish, oldest sister, who never gets offered as a romantic option, but is actually the best match for the eccentric count. There are tender moments between the two that were quite touching.

The movie is still worth watching. "Flesh For Frankenstein" has become the more notorious of the two, but Dracula still has it's moments.
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What Really Killed Off the Vampires
disinterested_spectator26 November 2014
Warning: Spoilers
There is usually a sexual element in vampire movies, but in this one, Count Dracula must have the blood of a virgin. Although set in the early twentieth century, times have changed so much that there just aren't many virgins anymore, and the Count is dying of malnutrition. He and his henchman leave Romania and go to Italy, where they think the strong religious traditions of that country will provide him with plenty of virgins to pick from. Boy, has he got a lot to learn.

One family in particular is aristocratic but hard up for money, and they are more than willing to let Dracula, who is quite wealthy, have his pick from their four daughters. Unfortunately for him, Mario, the budding proletarian communist who works for the family has already has his way with a couple of the sisters, who are quite slutty. They present themselves to Dracula as virgins, and he believes them. Oh well, even men who are not vampires have fallen for that line. But in each case, when he plunges his fangs into their necks and drinks their blood, he becomes violently ill and starts throwing it all up.

When Mario realizes what is going on, he nobly saves the fourteen-year-old sister, who is still a virgin, by busting her hymen, thereby spoiling her for the Count as well. And in a really gross scene, Dracula licks the blood from the floor where the deflowering took place. Unfortunately, the remaining sister, who was also a virgin, gets fanged by Dracula and becomes a vampire herself, and so she tries to save him from being hacked to pieces by an ax-wielding Mario. When the ax breaks, he drives the handle/stake into Dracula's heart, and then the newly minted vampire sister impales herself on the stake as well. Mario has been dreaming of the coming revolution when all the aristocrats will be wiped out and the workers will take over, and thus he gets to act that out in his own small way.

Original, funny, and entertaining, this is one of the better vampire movies.
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There's a vampire in it: A DVD Extras review
Ali_John_Catterall13 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Tartan Video 2006

Contents: Commentary featuring Paul Morrissey, Udo Kier and Maurice Yacowar, Screen-test, with commentary, Production stills

The first striking thing about this extras package, is that director Paul Morrissey literally never stops talking - which suits our purposes just fine. The second is that director Paul Morrissey could talk the legs off a centipede which, again, suits our purposes down to the ground, as you learn a lot about this movie over a good two hours.

In the screen-test we see footage of Flesh For Frankenstein's Srdjan Zelenovic auditioning for the role of Dracula (before Udo Kier ultimately stepped into his over-sized shoes). Morrissey was clearly very taken with the towering and aloof actor, who he recalls as having "an extraordinarily deep voice, as if coming from the grave. You pay attention to a man like that." We also learn that the aristocratic Zelenovic grew up in a "Soviet slave camp" (aka Yugoslavia), that his brother (who was just as tall) was a basketball player; and that his father was a general in Tito's army.

The production stills segment (featuring some great photos of Morrissey and Kier) lasts a good 25 minutes, affording Morrissey more time to discuss casting, characters, and behind-the-scenes stuff. Among other things, we learn that cameo performer Roman Polanski wanted to write his own part, rather than improvise; and that Udo and Joe Dallesandro were given haircuts so they could start shooting the minute Flesh wrapped.

A fan of spontaneity, Morrissey wasted no time in bringing his next project to the screen. "Dracula started shooting at 1pm after finishing Frankenstein an hour before. I suppose if they'd ask me to make a third right afterwards, I'd probably have done it."

The real meat is in the director's commentary proper - which is slightly confusing until you work out these are three separately recorded interviews edited (not entirely seamlessly) together. Mostly, this works. Sometimes, as with the juxtaposition of crusty but avuncular film historian Maurice Yacowar and the more down-home Morrissey, it renders matters redundant. Kier's own introduction "I'm Udo Kier, I'm Dracula, I'm on the search for the blood of a virgin and I hope you enjoy it," comes quite out of the blue, and makes you jump out of your skin.

"I didn't want to overplay it and play Dracula when I'd just played Frankenstein," Kier recalls. Once persuaded, Morrissey next explained he'd have to lose 10 kilos. "I said, 'I know how to do it.' I just didn't eat anymore." And he ended up in a wheelchair. Still, he appears to have relished the chance to star in something other than the more sombre fare he was used to.

"Dracula was important for me, it was seen by a lot of people. If you make a film in German, where's the audience? Some old guys hiding away in Brazil, if you know what I mean!" Yes, Udo, we know what you mean. Some of those Nazis probably got off on Joe Dallesandro's heaving buttocks too. Elsewhere he comments that "vomiting blood looks so great when you have a tuxedo on. Look at the red... it's beautiful." Sometimes, Udo, you seem like a strange and scary man.

Morrissey, often introduced by a disembodied woman's voice, reveals that the castle "belonged to someone who was in a madhouse and was rented out;" and that, "I did almost no research - I respect the legend, but I wasn't going to have my hands tied."

Yacowar's commentary, though erudite, can occasionally become intrusive, and an unwitting parody of 'Cahiers Du Cinéma'-speak, for a discussion about what is essentially a trashy horror-comedy. "There's an inexplicable psychology between their stripping in the fields and their sexual banter," he notes of the Di Fiori sisters, while "the combination of blood and bread makes the scene an infernal parody of communion. Morrissey must really enjoy the sex scenes played with Marxist polemics. He is sexually exploiting the class that exploits him economically." "This sequence is so beautifully photographed," Morrissey interrupts.

But Yacowar is far from finished. "For both of the vampire's climaxes Morrissey uses quiet piano music. This gives the blood-taking act the calm of satiety and culmination... the toilet is Morrissey's personal metaphor for the moral vacuum that has been created by liberal self indulgence." Later he'll concede, "Maybe I'm reading too much into that line. I usually do." He's mostly good value, however, especially for priceless stuff like, "This is a very elegant composition, with the little mound of breast in the foreground, romantically heaving."

To summarise, then: Keir? "There's communism in it, there's sex in it, there's revolution in it, there's aristocracy in it, and there's a vampire in it." Thanks, Udo. Final thoughts, Paul? "It's looking for the ambivalence of serious and silly, the meaningless and meaningful." And last but not least, Maurice. Who, for once, seems totally lost for words. "Whatever it is," he reckons, "it's some sort of a vampire movie." Got that? "But it raises more questions than it answers." Yes? "It's a kind of strange tribute to the horror movie mentality." Uh-huh. "A little bit horrible in some parts, and enjoyable in others." Come, Maurice, you're simply not reaching. "It's not one simple thing." Bless.
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erotica and sexual overload abound
sdancersrock29 November 2017
Review may contain spoilers.

Udo Kier doesn't play a very convincing Count Dracula. He cannot turn into a bat, nor a wolf, nor ethereal mist. He doesn't have a hypnotic effect on his victims like previous vampires. His assistant isn't a mentally disturbed man from an asylum, but rather a well dressed socialite with perfectly styled hair. In an ironic twist, the peasant servant of the castle has more of a predator like hunger for the females living there then the count does. The male servant's libido is off the charts as he has sex with 3 out of the 4 daughters of a rich aristocrat. The main idea behind this plot seems to be to cram in as much sex as possible into the total viewing time. In one scene two of the sisters engage in a passionate kissing session with each other. There is no reason for this except to try and increase lust on the part of the viewer. The Count has to feed but can only suck the blood of virgins, and believes he has found some highly available ones in the mansion. In his first attack on one of the girls, he sucks so much blood for so long that it would have at the very least caused her to lose consciousness or at the most die from rapid blood loss. His second attack is a little more believable because he doesn't suck in as much blood. But in both cases, the vomiting scenes afterwards are a huge turn off. The only thing more repulsive then those scenes are when the count laps up virgin blood off the floor left behind by the youngest daughter after the male servant sexually violates her. In the end, when the count is hacked to death by the ax wielding servant, I hoped that there was no way he could be resurrected for a continuation of this story in a second film. So far to date I have been right.
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