Welcome to the Weekly Movie Thread, your place on the Avocado to discuss films with your fellow commenters. Want to make a recommendation? Looking for recommendations? Want to share your opinions of movies, both new and classic?
This year marks the 30th anniversary of Francis Ford Coppola’s Bram Stoker’s Dracula. When it first showed up in theaters, I remember critics being a little disappointed by it. The man had made The Godfather, The Godfather Part II, and Apocalypse Now, three movies many critics had regarded as the best of all time.
Any director with that hot streak was only going to disappoint. Casting Winona Ryder as Mina Hacker and Keanu Reeves as Johnathan Harker?
Sometimes it takes time for a movie to find its footing, and personally this is my favorite adaptation of Dracula ever. Dracula should be weird, and this is one weird movie. From the old school special effects to the bonkers costuming to Anthony Hopkins absolutely chewing the scenery as Abraham Van Helsing. And… that hair. It’s full of memorable scenes like when he transforms into a pile of rats or when his bony profile casts a creepy shadow on the wall.
The epistolary novel by Bram Stoker is the ur-text for the entire vampire genre, yet itself is sort of it’s own thing. The conflation of an ancient curse with money and power, the romantic allure of an aristocratic figure, the eeriness of a ship where all have died.
Film is what we know of Dracula takes root. Most adaptations take cues from the many film appearances over the Dracula from the original novel. In that respect there are a lot of versions go choose from.
Vlad Dracul may be the most adapted fictional character of all time. Some are classic. Some are off brand fellows going under the name Count Orlok. Some are even wasted in Dario Argento productions… which, incidentally I watch every year. Some are even attempts at trying to craft a cinematic universe.
Good luck with that.
Today’s bonus prompt: who is your favorite actor to play Dracula?
Second bonus prompt: who is your favorite actor to play Van Helsing?