Mr. William Nightshade Reviews "The Horror of Dracula" (1958)

Salutations my screechers, screamers, and scary dreamers,

Tonight’s tale of terror entitled “The Horror of Dracula” concerns a crusading clinician’s quest to vanquish a vicious vampire.

First off, let us discuss the marvelous cast all of whom are unsurpassed in the annals of horror history making this a definite must see.  Of course most people will remember Christopher Lee who played Dracula superbly, but more screen time is given to Cushing and Gough with Cushing especially stealing the show.  All three leads dive in headfirst and prove that they are well versed in delivering performances that are truly exciting to what most would deem to be melodramatic writing. 

The story bears some resemblance to what we have seen before, but it does have a few surprises in store as themes of loss and retaliation serve as the centerpiece to this translation.  Gone is the Dracula intent on world conquest and in his place is one entirely obsessed with turning a woman no matter what the cost to avenge the bride that he lost.  A deeper motivation is implied by his quest to replace his fallen bride and I enjoyed this take on the vampire as it made him more about vengeful desire.

The music and effects accompanying the mission prove to be a welcome addition and add a lot to the overall feel from the opening shot to the zodiac wheel.  The soundtrack has the classic bombastic ring that always sounds so menacing and it kept building my anticipation right up until the culmination.  Speaking of the conclusion they employ nearly every illusion to make a memorable final fight that even today is still a delight.

Story/Concept: 1
Direction/Style: 2
Scares: 1
Atmosphere: 2
Rewatchability: 2
TOTAL: 7/10 

In conclusion, this is a fairly liberal adaptation of Stoker’s book, but has enough bite to warrant a look and given the killer cast this one is definitely a blast.

Stick to the shadows my fine friends. 

Sincerely,
Mr. William Nightshade