Tuesday, November 30, 2010

In Search of Dracula documentary

"Vem Var Dracula?" aka. "In Search of Dracula" (1975) is a highly interesting and atmospheric documentary that all true Horror lovers should enjoy. The film's main topic is, of course, the most famous of vampires, Dracula, as well as the real-life person he was based on, the Vlad III. Drăculea aka. Vlad Ţepeş (Vlad the Impaler), the infamous Wallachian Prince who owes his nickname to his favorite execution method of impalement. The narrator is none other than Horror icon Christopher Lee, who famously played the Prince of Darkness in the British Hammer Studios' great Dracula series as well as in several other Dracula films, and who reprises his most popular role here and also appears as the real-life inspiration. It is, of course, obvious that Christopher Lee, one of the greatest and most charismatic actors of all-time, is the best possible narrator for a Dracula-documentary.

"In Search of Dracula" is a Swedish/French/American co-production which offers an insight into the history of Transsylvania and the life of Vlad the Impaler in particular, and entertainingly documents the origins of Bram Stoker's great book. The film also gives some information about other greats of Horror, such as Mary Shelley's Dracula, as well as about Bram Stoker's life and the different film adaptations of his most famous work. Mainly, however, the film handles the gruesome true-story of Vlad the Impaler. "In Search of Dracula" is beautifully filmed in Romania as well as in other authentic European settings, and gives some interesting insights into Transsylvanian customs. The film has the eerie atmosphere one can expect in a good documentary about a Horror-related topic. Since I had previously read a lot on the topic, I didn't gain a lot of new information by watching this film, and yet I highly enjoyed it. Overall, this may not be entirely flawless, but it is a very good and atmospheric documentary that all fans of Horror and History should enjoy. Highly recommended!" ~Commentary from imdb.com

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