After spending most of my night last night working on my video for the Poe Arts Festival Poetry contest, I decided to jump back into the classics today. My next selection from Shudder was the one that started it all, Dracula from 1931.
Plot/ The ancient vampire Count Dracula arrives in England and begins to prey upon the virtuous young Mina.
For me, this was one of my first horror films that I watched back in my younger days and one that still resonates with me today. While I do love the classic silent unauthorized adaptation Nosferatu, there is something with the adaptation that takes the Bran Stoker story to an all-new level especially when you remember that the movie was made in 1931. Whether it was the amazing performance by Bela Lugosi or the technical vision and work of Tod Browning, this film creates one of the most iconic and memorable films of the history of cinema. Of course, there are other factors that help make this one great. All of the performances are solid and work within the storyline; the setting and cinematography create something dark and atmospheric, and as the first in the run of Universal Monsters the movie allows the rest of the universe grow by laying a tremendous foundation everything that would follow. Yes, the ending is a bit mellow and there are some head-scratching moments, but those do not really hold the movie back in any way. In the end, this movie remains a must see (along with Nosferatu) for fans of the vampire genre and one that stands tall in horror history. If you have not seen it, you are missing out.