Welcome, children of the night! This Blog is for fans of vintage horror films as well as those who are just beginning to discover the joy of these classic movies. I'd love to hear from you!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

The Brides of Dracula (1960)

The Brides of Dracula [BOD] is the kind of film you expect from the legendary Hammer Studios: beautiful sets, rich cinematography, impeccable acting, and a nicely written script.  BOD has all of these and much more.  Originally intended as the sequel to Horror of Dracula (1958), Hammer found themselves without Cristopher Lee to reprise  the role.  The script then went through extensive rewrites eventually resulting in Dracula remaining dead and a new vampire, Baron Meinster, taking his place.  David Peel is very good as the young Baron with matinee looks and a dashing smile.  This works to his advantage in the beginning of the film.  However, it's simply challenging for him to look menacing since he's such a "pretty boy."  Peter Cushing reprises his role as Dr. Van Helsing.  He is wonderful as always and gives the role 110%.  I also really loved Martita Hunt as Baroness Meinster, the Baron's Mama.  Her wardrobe is fierce and she has an intensity about her that is delightful to watch.  I think she steals the show in every scene she's in.
Terence Fisher's direction in this film is wonderful and the cinematography is eye-poppingly beautiful.  My only complaint is that the fangs of the vampires make them look like they are wearing over-sized dentures.  They are simply too big for their mouths.  But this is easy to overlook considering what a nicely crafted film this is.
I wanted to give this one an "excellent" rating and probably would have done so if it weren't for the ending of the film.  It seems a bit anti-climactic and I would have chosen to do something different that had a little more punch.  Still, don't miss this one.  It's a great example of the kind of film that made Hammer Horror legendary.
RATING: Very Good.
For more info check out the film's entry in IMDB.

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