Synopsis from MPI:
Academy Award® winner* Jack Palance stars in this terrifying adaptation of Bram Stoker s classic vampire legend written for the screen by sci-fi/horror master Richard Matheson and produced by the legendary Dan Curtis (Dark Shadows). Palance is Count Dracula, whose centuries-old existence is threatened after he attacks the lovely Lucy Westenra (Fiona Lewis) and her fiancé (Simon Ward, The Tudors) calls in famed vampire hunter Dr. Van Helsing (Nigel Davenport) to investigate.
If one thing was abundantly certain from this iteration of Dracula it is that Jack Palance understand how to play him at his worst and at his most vulnerable. Now this pay not be the sophisticated, emo vamp of Francis Ford Coppola's design, but he is multi-dimensional and complex, more so than Lugosi or Lee's portrayal of the prince of darkness. On one hand he is watching over his progeny and even shows real pain when they perish. The other hand is a brutal, homicidal side that creates evil with a grimace and perhaps and audible hiss so shocking it may actually startle you the first couple times you hear it.
The sets, music and supporting cast will remind you of Hammer productions which is perfect for this Hammer horror fan. In my mind you could even consider this a "lost" Hammer production on appearance alone though Lee doesn't don the cape. It would also fit in well with the John Badham Dracula from 1979 as its contemporary. Palance's performance is better than Langella's but the productions are very similar in feel and appearance.
The disc itself is an amazing 2K transfer. Beautiful color and contrast with appropriate film grain and very clean. As much care has been taken in this production as you might expect for Horror of Dracula aka Dracula from Hammer or perhaps one of its popular sequels. Even though Dan Curtis' effort is somewhat lesser known, the MPI product wouldn't let you know it. In addition to a somewhat traditional cover and good looking visual, the disc includes an interview and introduction with the late Jack Palance, outtakes, TV cuts, Spanish and French Audio Tracks and the trailer.
Hammer horror fans... Dracula fans... Palance fans... horror people... this is a release worth getting into especially given its slight obscurity.
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