Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Review

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992)
Blu-ray Review

Directed By Francis Ford Coppola

Starring Gary Oldman, Winona Ryder, Keanu Reeves, Anthony Hopkins

Review By Chongchen Saelee

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture – Gary Oldman plays the tortured soul Dracula.

It’s that time of year, folks. Halloween is upon us. And it’s my favorite holiday. When Halloween rolls around, I like to enjoy this version Dracula and A Nightmare Before Christmas, among some other select horror movies. There’s just something special about this version of Dracula, directed by Francis Ford Coppola. It’s a throwback to the old school Dracula movies before it, but it’s also very stylish and unique.

It’s not like something Roberto Rodriguez would do, say “Planet Terror”, or what his brother Quentin Tarantino would do with “Inglorious Basterds” where it may resemble a throwback, but it still looks very much too futuristic, like it was a modern movie. Francis Ford Coppola’s “Bram Stoker’s Dracula” has an art direction that looks like a stage play, and maybe that’s why it also comes off as spooky. You have to accept that environment as real because only Dracula can exist in that fantastical light. I think once you try to make anything “Dracula” too real, or too fantastical, you loose that special element. Think about the Bela Legosi Dracula when all it took was reflected mirror light in his eyes and not this abomination that is “Dracula Untold” that tries too hard to be Batman Begins, summoning a bat typhoon and shit.

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture – Gary Oldman’s pitch-perfect theatrical performance when he learns his beloved Elizabete has died, setting in motion Dracula’s path to cursing God and becoming an immortal blood-sucker.

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture – Sadie Frost as the supple nymph Lucy

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture – Winona Ryder as Mina

Anyway, if you don’t know the story by now, it’s been told thousands and thousands of times. Heck, it’s in the public domain, at least in America, so maybe you can even do your own version of Dracula. But, I suppose for those who never read it in school, here’s a quick synopsis: Jonathan Harker is a solicitor, in this movie played by Neo Keanu Reeves, and he has to visit some old creepy dude living in Transylvania about his property taxes or some shit like that. He is invited to stay there for a week. But the old dude is seriously creepy, and when Harker knicks his finger and starts bleeding, the old fart goes into a blood frenzy and unbeknownst to Harker, will become Dracula’s little Capri Sun pouch for the months to come. Dracula holds the boy hostage. Meanwhile, Harker’s fiance Mina is getting prepped to be Dracula’s new bride. And a vampire hunter called Van Helsing is looking for the old fart. And do the good guys win in the end? Of course.

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture – Gary Oldman in some bad-ass makeup by Rick Baker. I think he’s supposed to be a wolfman.

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture – Gary Oldman playing Dracula knocking at Mina’s window ready to seduce her. Don’t matter if you don’t open, he’ll turn to green gas and enter through the crevices.

Strong points for Coppola’s version include visual effects and makeup. The atmosphere, the lighting, production design is awesome.

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture – Lucy (played by Sadie Frost) having been sampled like a buffet by Dracula.

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture – Mina (played by Winona Ryder) and Dracula (played by Gary Oldman) about to get it on. Mina’s like, “You killed Lucy!” Dracula’s like, “So…?” And Mina’s like, “But I wanchu!!!” Dracula’s like, “I know.”

The acting is intentionally over-the-top theatrical and I like it. Keanu and Winona can’t act worth shit, but at least it’s not super bad. They were cast because they were the “it” kids during that decade. They didn’t want to get Johnny Depp (who I think they wanted to play Dracula obviously) because he probably couldn’t pull it off. Winona Ryder and Johnny Depp was the hot item couple at the time.

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture – One of Dracula’s sexy brides. No, that’s not Monica Belluci, but she is one of the brides.

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture – Lucy (played by Sadie Frost) and Mina (played by Winona Ryder) look at dirty pictures in a book called Arabian Nights. Y’know, because their virgins and this shows how naughty they are.

Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) Blu-ray Screen Capture – Lucy and Mina sitting pretty

And you know the movie is a hit once it gets parodied by the Zucker brothers in “Dracula Dead and Loving It”.

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