• In 1897, creepy Count Dracula in Transylvania (Jack Palance) acquires London property from Jonathan Harker (Murray Brown) whereupon he moves and falls for a woman who looks like his wife from 400 years earlier (Fiona Lewis), facing the opposition of Van Helsing & his sidekick (Nigel Davenport and Simon Ward). Penelope Horner is on hand as Mina.

    "Dracula" (1974) was directed by Dan Curtis and written by Richard Matheson based on Bram Stoker's novel of Victorian horror. The undead Count is more sympathetic here in comparison to Christopher Lee's take in the Hammer series, but he's still very formidable, which is particularly shown in the second half.

    While a TV production in America, it was released theatrically overseas and at least had the budget of "Horror of Dracula" (1958). There's some nice mood from the get-go with shots of canines (wannabe wolves) at a castle in Croatia. I love the Gothic/Victorian décor throughout and Palance makes for a convincing Prince of Darkness. While it doesn't beat the 1979 version with Frank Langella or Francis Ford Coppola's 1992 version, it's still a worthy interpretation of the oft-done tale.

    The movie runs 1 hour, 37 minutes, and was shot at Trakoscan Castle, Croatia, and the Greater London area, England, including Oakley Court, Windsor (Carfax Abbey).

    GRADE: B.