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Dracula (1931)

AKA's: Drakula / Ksiaze Dracula

Release date: 1931 USA
Running time: 74' (cover 75') - Source: DVD (RC 1/NTSC) b/w
72' (cover 72') - Source: VHS (PAL germ.) b/w
Rating: Germ.: 12; UK: PG; US: NR
Main Crew: Director: Tod Browning (Mark Of The Vampire 1935; Freaks 1932; London After
               Midnight 1927)
Producer: Universal Pictures
Score: Philip Glass (new score 1999)
Writer: Garrett Fort / Dudley Murphy (based on Bram Stoker's novel and the play by
            John L. Balderston & Hamilton Deane)
Director of photography: Karl Freund


Summary: When estate agent Jonathan Harker (David Manners) visits Count Dracula (Bela Lugosi) at his castle in Transylvania, he sets in motion a tragic series of events that brings the undead Dracula to England and in conflict with vampire expert Professor Van Helsing (Edward Van Sloan).
Note: - The film was originally released at 84' (featuring a prologue introduction with Edward Van Sloan) but censored to 75' for its 1936 reissue. As for most films that were censored at that time, all the footage that was cut out was destroyed and is now assumed to be lost.
- Carla Laemmle, who played a coach passenger (and whose uncle, Carl Laemmle, founded Universal Pictures in 1915) spoke the first lines of dialogue in this first talking supernatural thriller of film history.
- Lon Chaney Sr. was originally lined up to play the Count. However, he died of bronchial cancer in 1930, well before production could start. Several other actors were considered for the role, including John Carradine and Paul Muni, before Lugosi finally signed the contract.
- A Spanish-language version was filmed at night on the same set at the same time, with Spanish-speaking actors.

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Our Ranking

short review:

Another one of the countless adaptations of Bram Stoker's book. However, one of the older ones and one of the best ones. Filmed in eerie and stylish pictures, you will find great Bela Lugosi portraying one of the smoothest counts in vampire-film history - he defined our cultural image of what a vampire should be! Even as his greatest menace seems to be coming from his eyes staring sinister and shining like beacons out of his slightly dimmed face.

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