Bram Stoker's Dracula - Yea or Nay?

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Brandonv, Sep 9, 2009.

  1. Brandonv

    Brandonv Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I have seen this movie twice now, and my thoughts on it are mixed.

    First, what I don't like. I think the love story between Dracula and Mina feels out of place. It is like we are supposed to feel sorry for Dracula, but I just can't. If he had started out the movie as a likable character then maybe, but even before he became Dracula he was Vlad the Impaler, a man who committed many atrocities. I also find myself a bit bored during some stretches of the film.

    Despite these problems, the directing, cinematography, atmosphere, and special effects all win me over. Even during the parts of the movie that are boring I can't take my eyes off the screen because I find the movie to be so well done visually. I like how the special effects all have an old fashion conventional look to them - it really helps set the atmosphere. Gary Oldman delivers a solid performance, and Anthony Hopkins - one of my favorite actors - is always a pleasure to watch.

    Overall, I would say the good outweighs the bad. I am still not sure exactly how I would rate the movie though.

    I would be interested to read what everybody thinks of this movie.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2009
  2. USS KG5

    USS KG5 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I really like it, the atmosphere and tweaks to the story are refreshing. It also is very funny, occasionally intentionally (with Hopkins totally OTT Van Helsing) and more often than not unintentionally (check out Keanu saying "I know where the bastard sleeps" in one of the most unconvincing English accents ever put to screen).

    Few Dracula adaptations have quite as much fun with the story and concept as this one, Lucy is correctly portrayed as a little slut, and Mina as almost jealous of this and her confidence, Dracula is a bit TOO sympathetic for a mass-murderer but hey, at least not one-dimensional.
     
  3. CorporalClegg

    CorporalClegg Admiral Admiral

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    I thought this was about the book... :(
     
  4. davejames

    davejames Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Haven't seen it in awhile, but I remember being disappointed by it. There was too much focus on the style and visuals over the story or characters.
     
  5. caisson2delta

    caisson2delta Captain Captain

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    I loved the movie and just saw it again, not all that long ago. Compared to the other vampire flicks coming out in the same time frame as this, it was top notch. It was a step above "Interview with the Vampire" and many of the other B and C vampire movies riding on the shirt tails of this time frame.
     
  6. Too Much Fun

    Too Much Fun Commodore Commodore

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    It just reinforced the opinion I started forming after I started investigating Francis Ford Coppola's films other than the first two "Godfather" movies that he's just not very good. Other examples: "The Outsiders", "Jack", "Apocalypse Now", "The Conversation". Those last two are so boring and pointless, I can't imagine why they're considered classics. His "Peggy Sue Got Married" is very nice, though.

    This is one of those movies that is beautiful to look at, but just hollow (like "Blade Runner"). The cinematography, production design, costumes, make-up, and special effects are all excellent (style/aesthetic qualities), but the story and characters were terrible. Gary Oldman is deliciously over-the-top, but everybody else in the movie sucks. Winona Ryder and Keanu Reeves are way out of their league (Keanu should never be in period pieces...he was the only blotch on the otherwise perfect "Much Ado About Nothing")
     
  7. ManOnTheWave

    ManOnTheWave Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Yea. It was closer to the book than any other adaptation I'm aware of. It used the special effects of the era in which the book was written, and the tragic love story element made thematically consistent with a lot of the older, better Universal monster movies. It was also beautiful to look at. Considering Dracula will be remade again and again, I'd call this one a very clever one off.
     
  8. MeanJoePhaser

    MeanJoePhaser Admiral

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    I remembering first watching the edited for t.v. version and the entire character of Renfield was cut from it.

    It's kinda hard to sympathize with Dracula after he delivers a live infant for his vamp bitches to feast on.
     
  9. davejames

    davejames Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I honestly don't get why more people don't love Interview. I've always thought it was a beautifully made movie, with tons of really badass moments and characters in it.

    Coppola's movie was just far too campy and over the top for my taste.
     
  10. caisson2delta

    caisson2delta Captain Captain

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    I enjoyed Interview as well, it is just a completely different style of the genre. I agree with one of the earlier posts that Dracula was much more in line with the book. Having read both prior to seeing the movies, I was don't want to say disappointed, but felt that Interview could have been better. I just felt that it was too far removed from the book version.
     
  11. Gaith

    Gaith Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I also loved Hopkins' performance, and agree that trying to humanize Dracula was a boneheaded move. He's a nonhuman monster, for Pete's sake; the fact that he can smile politely doesn't detract from that.

    There's a fan edit of the film I haven't gotten around to seeing that purports to follow the book much more closely by cutting 25 minutes. I don't know if the cuts are enough to give it a proper suspense-thriller feel, but I might check it out someday...
     
  12. broberfett

    broberfett Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I enjoyed it except for Dracula's huge-ass bun of steel hairdo. I mean, WTF was that?
     
  13. Turtletrekker

    Turtletrekker Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The book, yea. The movie, nay.
     
  14. DarKush

    DarKush Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I don't remember much about it. Though the visual style was very impressive. I loved the costumes, particularly Dracula's red armor at the beginning. I also loved the make-up/FX for Dracula-particularly the bat and wolf/beast forms. From what I can recall of the story, I thought it was okay. I also remember Lucy being pretty hot. This question now has got me wanting to dig in my crates and try to find it to watch it again.
     
  15. species5618

    species5618 Commodore Commodore

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    I thought it was a great film--with the notable exception of Keanu Reeves' performance, particularly his atrocious English accent.
     
  16. Stardate

    Stardate Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Defiantly YEA. I really like this film. I think Gary Oldman as Dracula was fantastic and he deserved an Oscar nomination for his work. Anthony Hopkins and Winona Riker were solid. However i feel Keanu Reeves was totally miscast for this movie. The director Cappola himself has admitted that it was a mistake to cast Keanu. Anyway i really like the atmosphere, cinematography and visual effect were top notch and tis movie deserve all the praise it has gotten. Personally i find it underrated by most of the general publics. My only beefs was Keanu and i think they tried to humanize Dracula way to much. Also director focused to hard on Mina and Dracula love story and expense of Keanu Jonathan(i think) and Mina relationship.
     
  17. Thrall

    Thrall Commodore Commodore

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    I thought the movie butchered the novel. Of course, most Dracula movies do. But this one had the pretense of being the most faithful to the book, of which it was not. I'm sure it was a good movie on it's own merits, I suppose. But I just couldn't get around the Mina/Dracula thing. The love story between Mina and Dracula was preposterous, even for a fantasy film. I really don't see why this girl was worth saving from undeath. Because screwing around with the evil monster that raped/murdered her best friend and tortured/kidnapped her husband for all eternity was obviously what this dumb bitch wanted. So I say let her join her Drac's Slut Brigade. The scene where he makes her drink his blood was meant, in the novel, to be symbolic of a rape scene. It was meant to horrify, not titillate. Mina, in the book, despised the guy and wanted him dead. It made her much more sympathetic, and a much stronger character IMO.

    Dracula was an evil piece of shit in the novel, so I really didn't care for the sympathetic view of him. He was a mass murdering monster in life, and glorified rapist in death so I really didn't see how or why I was supposed to have sympathy for him. Oh, right. Dead wife. I forgot. :rolleyes:

    In the book, there is a love story there. But it's between Mina and - here's the shocker - her actual husband. Not that Drac had much competition here. Reeves is awful as always when he tries to act, but John Boy is written as such a pathetic wimp(who's way too dumb to realize that his wife is just a big ol' whore) that it's impossible to get behind the guy. This is in contrast to the novel Harker, who gradually becomes a vamp-killing badass.

    I mean there were some highlights I guess. It was Coppola, so it was very well directed. The mood was as perfect as you can get. The vamp sluts were hot as shit. Hopkins was perfect as Van Helsing. But other then that, I didn't really care for it. Mostly because of the false advertising. I'm still waiting for a faithful version to come out.
     
  18. john titor

    john titor Captain

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    The book was terrible, it was just a hokey chase story with the vampire mythos plugged in, it was the first to popularize ancient legends using a semi decent plot format.

    The movie is much better and more enjoyable. Its fantasy so the vlad the impaler ethics is not important in this context. Secondly the move to complicate him was a good idea, one thing I strongly dislike in films is one sidedness and obviousness, I prefer shades of subtetly and character development, bending conventions rather than adhering to them. The film is a bit lumpen but then given the source material that was somewhat inevitable. It is the definative dracula movie and I don't see it being bettered as its interpretation of the source material is successfully realized and its uniqueness excludes the possibility of it being superceeded, it can only be rivalled with alternate versions.
     
  19. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

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    Apocalypse Now and The Conversation "boring and pointless?" Peggy Sue Got Married "nice?" You've just ignored his best two films (outside of The Godfather and The Godfather Part II) and given life to one of his lesser, hired gun projects (one filled with cheesy sentiment and nepotism for his nephew, nonetheless).

    At least you didn't take the chance to dump on his screenplay for Patton or his writing and direction on The Rain People. You want to see a Coppola movie that's worthless, try Dementia 13 or Finnian's Rainbow. On second thought, no. I wouldn't wish those films upon anybody.

    Ah, I see. Our tastes are so far removed from one another that it would be pointless to continue.
     
  20. LeahBoBo

    LeahBoBo Commander

    I liked the movie. I wasn't wild about Hopkins's performance. He always is a bit over the top in my opinion. Gary Oldman did some interesting things with the character of Dracula.
     

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