Dracula ★★★

"There are far worse things awaiting man than death" - Count Dracula

There are some great moments sprinkled throughout this film, especially the opening scenes in Dracula's castle, but I find that it loses its momentum quickly after Dracula crosses the English Channel. At that point, the film transforms into something more akin to a soap opera than a horror film. This may be due to the film's origins as a 1924 stage play adaptation of Bram Stoker's novel, but I wish Dracula's filmmakers would have considered utilizing more cinematic technique to heighten tension in ways that would be impossible in a theater, instead of relying mostly on dialogue which may have worked on stage but doesn't necessarily translate as well into a film.

In this way, the film draws direct comparison to 1922's Nosferatu, a silent film adaptation of Bram Stoker's book. As a silent film, Nosferatu was forced to forgo dialogue in favor of disturbing its audience through frightening imagery, creative camera angles, and harsh lighting. In my opinion, Nosferatu feels more frightening than 1931's dialogue heavy Dracula due to Dracula's lack of innovation and tendency to tell the audience to be afraid through dialogue rather than show them something to be afraid of.

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