Dracula (Spanish Version)


The Spanish version of Dracula is heralded as a refined, more stylish film than its American counterpart. It's true that the picture is finespun. It certainly has a visual flair that Tod Browning's Dracula lacks. But aside from the obvious differences that any pair of eyes could pick up, I found this romantic sibling to be rather lifeless. To justify my opinion, I'll cite the running time, which is 30 minutes longer than that of the Lugosi chiller. Why is this film longer, you may ask? Because there is excess dead air between each line of dialogue. This is one slow movie. I'm talking slow-slow. Slower than sorghum. Slower than a turtle with busted kneecaps. Don't even think of watching it late at night. I tried to, but I fell asleep twice (yes, I rewatched it).

The cast is tremendous. Carlos Villarias makes for a great Count and Pablo Alvarez Rubio makes for an insane Renfield. George Melford does a splendid job behind the camera. The imagery is enchanting, but there wasn't enough meat to sink my teeth into during the sedated scenes. While the storyline is virtually identical to that of Browning's Dracula, the execution failed to enthrall me. I still recommend watching this flick since most horror fanatics disagree with me. At the very least, it's a novel curiosity. If you don't already own it, buy the Dracula Legacy box set from Universal. It contains both versions of Dracula, Dracula's Daughter (a 4-Z'dar sparkler), Son of Dracula and House of Dracula. Not a bad line-up!

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