29 January 2003 | FoxRyan
Good fun, but not up to scratch.
An interesting entry into the series, but really, I feel there was still life in the 19th Century time frame. Bringing Dracula to the 70s was, I think a mistake. Christopher Lee seems to be mostly forgotten and never gets the opportunity to get out and do what he does best. He remains in an old disused church for the whole film and only has a few decent scenes. We have Peter Cushing here, of course, playing an excellent part as Van Helsing, which somewhat saves the film. Decent portrayals by Lee, Cushing, Beacham, Munroe and Neame are worth watching. The 2 best things about this movie are , 1, the opening. Hyde Park, and Dracula and Van Helsing and racing through on a horse drawn carriage battling it out. The carriage crashes and they are both thrown. Van Helsing recieving fatal wounds and Dracula impaled on a broken wheel. Pretty good stuff, although not enough lighting was used so the carriage top battle and following events are rather hard to see. 2, the finale. As Van Helsing plans to destroy Dracula he drives a silver bladed knife through the Count's heart, only to be removed by his Granddaughter Jessica. Van Helsing then lures Dracula out to his death. The first few moments between Lee and Cushing in this final battle are classic, and for the first time in the series history, the 2 main characters speak to each other. The film is worth a look, if you`re a fan of modern horror then Lee and Cushing will seem a little lost, but if you`re a fan of the old Hammer Dracula films, take a look, with the beginning and the end, you just might like it.