This Seductive, Thrilling, love story has some Bite! Based from the book and is a true masterpiece. Gary Oldman plays Dracula and simply makes this movie. His obsession with Winona Ryder characters is relentless and heart chilling. Don't worry Keanu Reeves doesn't ruin it, he actually did a great job. Anthony Hopkins plays the role of Dr. Van Helsing. We all know his story now thanks to Hugh Jackman. Some brief nudity and a HOT scene with Winona as she runs though the garden in her PJ's. Not only do I gave Bram Stoker's Dracula 5 stars, BUT I rate it in my Top 10 all-time. MUST SEE!
The script is an unevenly good adaptation of the novel. It resolves better Dracula's aims and motivations through the love story. Also, it provides a more understandable glue to join the 4 men chasing Dracula from a XXth century point of view and removes unimportant characters having a more "round" story. However, due to some changes certain parts are now incoherent since they were not properly adapted to the other changes. In addition, other parts are totally impossible to follow due to the amount of details only commented quickly along the movie. Costumes and general artistic work is superb but it drives the movie to some extreme stravaganza that, in the case of the actors' performances make some parts of the movie completely overacted. In any case, I think this is an iconic movie worth watching more than once.
Although it certainly won't make you easily forget earlier interpretations of the seminal horrific character by Max Schreck, Bela Lugosi, Sir Christopher Lee or Klaus Kinski, Gary Oldman definitely finds a way under your skin. As well, the resoundingly sumptuous cinematography will sweep you off your feet--unless you're dead to begin with... =)
Gets worse on repeat viewings. Francis Ford Coppola's take on the Dracula legend sees Gary Oldman as the Count, who as a warrior prince returns from battle to find his true love, who after believing him to have been killed, has committed suicide. Renouncing his Christianity he pledges to return from the death to enact revenge on humanity. Century's later he is back to keep his word but becomes infatuated with Mina (Winona Ryder) who bears a resemblance to his long dead true love. Forget the Bram Stoker bit, this is liberty taken wholesale, and forget any notion of this being a scary Dracula movie, for this is Gothic romance opulence. There is no doubting that as a production design goes, it's top dollar, costumes, photography, score, sets and puppetry etc, all the money is up there on the screen to please the eyes and the ears. But the narrative shift to make Dracula a tragic longing figure is a mistake, as is several casting decisions and performances. It's actually easier to say who comes out of it with credit, so step up Tom Waits as Renfield and Richard E. Grant as Dr. John Seward. Oldman is committed to the lead role, and has tortured soul down pat, but someone thought it was a good idea to make him an old ponce and stick a set of buttocks on his head! You just can't take the character seriously from the moment he appears on screen. There's some vampire erotica as Coppola caters for the horny horror faithful, though these scenes play out like an after midnight MTV video, so not really very sexy at all. While there's a lot of fun to be had, yes you read right, with a number of scenes inserted within the dull narrative: did the great Anthony Hopkins just sniff the cheese and Keanu Reeves attempt a posh British accent? Aaargh! It should have been a Gothic classic, but clearly Coppola was out of his depth tackling such a genre. After giving myself over ten years between returning to watch the film again, I can say with confidence that it's a film that gets worse on repeat viewings. That is unless you like unintentional comedy pictures? 3/10
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