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Bram Stoker's Dracula

Updated on June 26, 2010

The legendary Bram Stoker's Dracula is seductively retold by Francis Ford Coppola as an erotic, opulent, bloody tale. After four hundred years, Count Dracula (interpreted with alluring passion by Gary Oldman) is reunited with his lovely soulmate the alluring Mina played by Winona Ryder in Bram Stoker's Dracula. Lucy (Sadie Frost) who is Mina's best friend dies when she is bitten by Dracula, and Renfield (paradoxically played by the musician and songwriter Tom Waits) is waiting for his master's return from where he is locked in an asylum. Professor Van Helsing interpreted by the great actor Anthony Hopkins helps Jonathan Harker played by the sleepwalking Keanu Reeves, Mina's fiancé tries to save Mina's soul as well as her life before she fulfills her destiny to be Dracula's bride forever as part of the adaptation of Bram Stoker's Dracula.

Mina's friend Lucy is attacked by Dracula and Dr. Jack Seward played by Richard E. Grant asks for the assistance of Professor Van Helsing (Anthony Hopkins) to treat Lucy's "disease of the blood." Lucy dies and is resurrected as a vampire but in the meantime Jonathan manages to find his way out from the castle and he and Mina get married. Mina declares her undying love for Dracula when he appears to her in her sleep. In the Bram Stoker's Dracula screenplay Professor Van Helsing, Jack Seward, Arthur Holmwood interpreted by a young Cary Elwes, and Lucy's fiancé, join forces with Jonathan and journey to the Romanian enclave of Transylvania to kill the evil Dracula, but Mina makes efforts to save her tormented lover.

The role of a Victorian eccentric named Renfield who actually proceeds to sing the praises of Count Dracula is played by Musician Tom Waits. Illuminated oodles of blood and elaborate costume design make an absolute must-see of Bram Stoker's Dracula. Francis Ford Coppola focuses on the romantic angle of the original horror story by Bram Stoker. At the same time, amidst an abundance of blood, he overlooks no detail in regards to visual effects and other filming tricks. The result is that of a living tale.

Of course, Coppola had some great material to work from in making Bram Stoker's Dracula. Images of impaled bodies being left to struggle in agony, for days even, accompanied Dracula's reign. The rotting bodies left on rods while blackbirds and vultures fed on them, dared the other Ottoman troops to share their fate. There is one incredible account of a battle during which Dracula impaled thousands of enemy troops as he retreated into nearby mountains.  The stench of the rotting bodies was enough to halt the Turkish advance as it was too much for the sultan to withstand. In another gruesome account, it is reported that Dracula feasted at a table arranged amongst hundreds of the corpses of his latest victims. It goes as far as to say that he supposedly even ate bread dipped in blood. This unimaginably sadistic and bloody gore is captured in Bram Stoker's Dracula to a great degree and thus makes it a de rigeur viewing for all who revel in human misery.


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