Dracula Untold (2014) – Review

As seen on CinemaParadiso.

dracula-untold

Vampire films are almost always being released, each giving a different idea as to what a vampire would be like. Some portray it as an illness or curse, others a physical creature, and some even as a romantic figure. Dracula Untold brilliantly brings back the fearful creature we know this famed vampire to be, and is a film you’ll want to watch again and again.

When his pride, kingdom, and family are threatened, Prince Vlad is determined to defeat the enemy. He makes the difficult choice, and becomes the villain to be the hero. And the rest…is history.

There are so many reasons why this film is great. Firstly: the acting. For the most part, I prefer to watch TV shows and films where I’m not particularly familiar with the cast. While I love seeing my favourite actors get work, it helps me to enter the new world by not recognising the characters as whoever I have seen them playing previously. This cast also created a dramatic atmosphere. This is a good thing, because even though a story about vampires is clearly false, they still managed to make the audience feel for the characters. To break up this drama, the smaller moments of comedy were excellent, not turning the film into something silly, but showing the multiple layers of the characters.

Vampire stories have been told so many times and in so many different ways across assorted mediums, and yet, just from watching the trailer, I could tell this was going to be different. It was a very cool way of portraying vampires again, that have slipped from being scary creatures/villains, to romantic figures. As a fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and not Twilight, I appreciate this resurgence of the vampire-as-villain element. The story also reminded me a lot of Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, which I also loved. The mix of history with fantasy is an awesome thing if done right, and Dracula Untold definitely did that.

With the advancement of technology, films can no longer get away with bad visual effects. The good thing for this film, is that its designers were amazing, therefore making the visual effects just as good.

For the most part, reviews haven’t been too good. While there are some that see and love all of the points that I did, there are others that wanted more; though I don’t know what they were exactly wanting.

The two-hour runtime just flew past, and I was mesmerised by the visual effects, action, acting, and story the entire time. I honestly didn’t know what was going to happen next, and that’s something that I look for in a film.

It’s also interesting to note that this film is slated to become part of the ‘Universal Monster’ franchise, which is a reboot of all these classic monsters, with The Mummy rumoured to come shortly.

All in all, this is definitely a film to add to your collection.

5 out of 5 stars

Advertisements

Once More, With Feeling!

So it’s been brought to my attention that Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Once More, With Feeling episode is now 14 years old!! I thought I would do a quick little blog post about it, because it truly is amazing television. *SPOILERS AHEAD*

For those of you that don’t know, Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997-2003) is a show about a girl who has special abilities and fights vampires, demons, and all other monsters. In this particular episode, we are treated to a singing and dancing cast. With a dancing demon (“no, something isn’t right there”) bringing out all their unsaid words, the harmless spectacle turns deadly, as the power and emotion is too much to handle.

Screen Shot 2015-11-08 at 2.04.16 am

It was through a Facebook post by Whedonesque that alerted me to the milestone. I can’t believe it has really been that long. I remember like it was only yesterday. Being in Australia, we probably got it a year after America, but we had avoided spoilers (not really much internet then), and all sat up late to watch it.

I remember by mum warning us beforehand not to sing along, to which we aptly replied that they were original songs and we would have no idea what the lyrics were.

The episode was everything that it was hyped to be, and we even got to see a Buffy/Spike kiss. The singing was as-expected, with many of the cast already professional singers, and no one let the rest down. The songs, however, have definitely stood the test of time. Even now, whenever I feel inclined to sing (usually in the shower), Once More, With Feeling songs are always the first I think of.

If you haven’t seen it before, I highly recommend it. Oh, and while I’m at it, there is also a musical episode of Sanctuary (2008-2011) that does it in a very different, but still very cool way.