Thursday, July 26, 2007

My Favorite Movies: HORROR OF DRACULA


Director: Terence Fisher
Year: 1958

I'm not a fan of contemporary horror films. To be honest, I think they're a waste of time. Why would I pay to be scared? I especially hate the horror trend nowadays, which involves torture, decapitation, and dismemberment (so much for subtlety!). However, I have a soft spot for zombie movies, because I think they're not just about cadavers that inexplicably came back to life. I'm also fond of vampire movies (not the video game variety though with the electronica soundtrack), because they're almost always glamorous and sexy, and have great atmosphere.

Horror of Dracula is certainly one of the classic vampire movies, starring Christopher Lee in his first portrayal of Count Dracula (he reprised the role several times) and Peter Cushing as Dr. Van Helsing. With its bombastic musical score, great cast, production design and cinematography, the film put the legendary British horror factory Hammer Films on the map, and became a template for gazillions of vampire films to come. Watch it or I'll bite your neck.

(Do also check out George Romero's zombie classic Night of the Living Dead, Sam Raimi's Evil Dead series, and the first two versions of House of Wax, the 1953 version of which starred Vincent Price. Stay away from the Paris Hilton version).

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1 comment:

Otep said...

"Horror of Dracula" was among the last of the Hammer series that I saw but it was the first one where I had a complete viewing (since the others I saw mostly on commercial TV)

Christopher Lee was a raw source of animal magnetism - he just stole the movie from Cushing, who was supposed to headline this movie. When he did the forgettable "Attack of the Clones" the guy still had it. What a shame he only took jokes for jobs after "Dracula" - mainstream moviedom just had him typecast.