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Count Dracula (1977)

The vampire count leaves his Transylvanian home to wreak havoc across the world.

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(adaptation), (novel)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Count Dracula
... Abraham van Helsing
... Lucy Westenra
... Wilhelmina 'Mina' Westenra
... Renfield
Mark Burns ... Dr. John Seward
... Jonathan Harker
Richard Barnes ... Quincey P. Holmwood
... Mrs. Westenra
George Raistrick ... Bowles
... Swales
Michael Macowan ... Mr. Hawkins (as Michael MacOwan)
Susie Hickford ... Dracula's Bride
Belinda Meuldijk ... Dracula's Bride
Sue Vanner ... Dracula's Bride
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Storyline

For those familiar with Bram Stoker's novel, this adaptation follows the book quite closely in most respects. Jonathan Harker visits the Count in Transylvania to help him with preparations to move to England. Harker becomes Dracula's prisoner and discovers Dracula's true nature. After Dracula makes his way to England, Harker becomes involved in an effort to track down and destroy the Count, eventually chasing the vampire back to his castle. Written by Cameron Fairchild <fairchop@ix.netcom.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Louis Jourdan, one of film's most dashing leading men, turns chillingly sinister to portray the infamous vampire king.

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Horror

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Details

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Release Date:

1 March 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Drácula  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When first shown on British television in December 1977, the film was shown all in one evening lasting 155 minutes. When it was repeated (twice) in 1979, it was split into three episodes shown on consecutive nights. A repeat screening in 1993 was split into two episodes. See more »

Goofs

Jonathan Harker's shaving mirror, while it is hanging on the wall, is clearly made up of one large central panel and four beveled panels at the edges. However, when Dracula takes it and waves his hand over it, it consists of only one large, flat panel. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Wilhelmina 'Mina' Westenra: You'll write often?
Jonathan Harker: Every day, Mina, I promise.
Wilhelmina 'Mina' Westenra: And I promise to study my shorthand so that I shall be able to do your letters when we're married.
Lucy Westenra: Jonathan! Jonathan! Time for you to go.
Jonathan Harker: Yes, of course.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The credits are superimposed over the infamous German woodcuts depicting the crimes of the historical Voivode Vlad Dracula. See more »

Connections

Version of Dracula in Pakistan (1967) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Simply the best adaptation of Bram Stoker's original novel.
20 March 2010 | by See all my reviews

Like most people on here I also thought this BBC version was the most faithful adaptation of Stoker's original novel. Granted, they have changed a few details; for example, Mina and Lucy are sisters, the characters of Quincy and Arthur have been amalgamated and Jonathan visits the Count at his castle in Bohemia rather than Transylvania, but these minor deviations aside, I think even Stoker himself would have said this version was fairly close to what he had in mind while writing his famous novel.

Being from the UK I have grown up with the BBC and the programmes it produced in the 1970's. Watching 'Count Dracula' as an adult on DVD was, in many ways, a very pleasant nostalgic journey back to my childhood. Yes, I agree the budget did impose certain restrictions on the production...fake bats and obvious stage sets instantly spring to mind.....along with the mix of video and film but, to me, instead of being negative points these so called 'flaws' all added to its charm. That said, it also had some genuinely outstanding points; it is truly creepy, fantastically acted, perfectly cast and and had excellent script. The undoubted highlight for me has to be the location filming in Whitby cemetery; the scenes of Lucy being attacked in the graveyard were actually filmed in the very graveyard that inspired Stoker when he was writing the novel back in the 1890's. Cut to Francis Ford Copploa's 1992 version....which also makes a claim to being a faithful adaptation of the novel... and it doesn't even mention Whitby at all.

As for Louis Joudan, in my opinion, he is simply the best ever Dracula; understated, sophisticated, menacing and arrogant. Both Lugosi and Oldman were good but they were a bit too camp and shouted their evil from the rooftops. Jourdan, on the other hand, whispered in your ear and chilled the very depths your soul without you even really knowing why. In a word, genius. Another role worth noting is Jack Shepherd as Renfield. Again, not a typical over the top portrayal of a madman in an asylum but rather a somewhat more complex character; a normal man tortured by very specific moments of madness. The scene when he begs Dr. Seward to release him is truly, truly magnificent.

I'll not hide the fact that I am a Dracula fan. I love Stoker's original novel and I love the Victorian Gothic ambiance that it contains. While the BBC's version doesn't quite match Coppola's film for atmosphere and special effects, it certainly makes up for it with its script, the quality of the acting and its faithfulness to the original novel. It has to be, without doubt, my single favourite version of the Dracula story.


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