Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Day 78: Bram Stoker's Dracula

Tap dancing all around the original Dracula this week. This entry is all about the Francis Ford Coppola movie that was meant to be more "accurate" somehow even though it integrated a lot of material that wasn't in the novel. Coppola chose to really focus on Dracula as Vlad the Impaler and his participation in the Crusades. It also features Keanu Reeves hurting himself to try a British accent.

First of all, Gary Oldman is inspired as Dracula. He plays him old and young and monstrous and romantic. You've got one of my favorites, Winona Ryder, as the dead ringer for Vlad's love interest. Anthony Hopkins brings the gravitas as Van Helsing. It is just unfortunate that Keanu has to carry the beginning of the movie as the ill-fated Jonathan Harkness.

The history of Dracula section also sticks out as a weakness to me. I would rather not know all his backstory but that was Coppola's decision. Your own mileage may vary. In the end, when you get to the meat of the story (Dracula in London), things maintain a pretty high quality. The uneven nature of the movie makes it hard to flat out recommend but, if you've never seen it you might like it more than I did.

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