Bram Stoker's Dracula title

Tag Line : Love never dies.

Bram Stoker's Dracula boxIf you thought that nothing new could be done with the classic vampire tale, or that it had all been done before by Hammer pictures, you couldn't have been more wrong. The original Bram Stoker novel gets the Francis Ford Coppolla treatment, to bring us what is probably the most enjoyable re-telling of the classic tale to date.

For those not familiar with the story, the film starts with young lawyer Jonathan Harker (played by action movie star Keanu Reeves) who has travelled to a small village in the country of Transylvania to assist a local noblemen in the sale of his castle.

However, this is no ordinary castle, and the owner is no ordinary nobleman. For this is the castle of the Evil Prince Vlad Dracula, a blood sucking vampire (no wonder the local peasants were so damn scared), and after seeing a picture of Harker's girlfriend Mina Murray (played by Winona Ryder), he finds himself being forced to spend an extended stay in the castle, whilst the count packs himself off to jolly old England to seduce her and turn her into one of his kind.

Fortunately Harker manages to escape and gets back to London where he enlists the help of vampire killer Dr Van Helsing (played by British veteran Anthony Hopkins), and so the battle is on to try and prevent the count from vampirising the lovely miss Murray , who has already been busy working on some of her friends.

If you like classic vampire pics (although I'm not sure they had gun slinging Texan's in London during that period), you will love this one. Gary Oldman's portrayal of the evil count is excellent, being both charismatic and menacing at the same time. Anthony Hopkins is wonderfully eccentric in his role as Dr Van Helsing, and Winona Ryder is excellent no matter what film she stars in. Richard E. Grant also puts in an appearance as an unfortunate doctor who gets his arse bitten off by one of Mina's vampirised friend's.

Best Line, Dr Seward (Grant) asks Van Helsing if he wants to autopsy Lucy, to Which he replies "No, not exactly, I just wish to cut off her head and take out her heart".

Overall Marks : 7/10.

Terrifying Trivia.

  • The film was originally going to be a TV movie directed by Michael Apted, however Winona Ryder showed the script to Francis Ford Coppolla who liked it so much he agreed to turn it into a motion picture. Apted stayed on as executive producer.

  • Prior to this picture, Francis Ford Coppola hadn't spoken to Winona Ryder in almost a year, after she backed out of a role in Godfather 3 due to exhaustion.

  • Anthony Hopkins also plays Cesare, the priest who tells Dracula that Elisabeta's soul is damned.

  • The UK video version contains a scene that was absent from other releases, where Jonathan Harker's nipple is licked by one of the female vampires who then bites it and cause it to bleed.

  • Prince Vlad's scream after he drives his sword into the cross during the intro was not actually the voice of Gary Oldman. Lux Interior, lead singer of punk band The Cramps, recorded the scream and it was dubbed in.

  • There were 38 different cuts of the film prior to its release. There are at least eight shots missing from the US theatrical, video, and DVD versions. Criterion laserdisc version has extra footage, and a 30 min. documentary entitled "The Making of Bram Stoker's Dracula"

Extra Info.

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