Dracula: Prince of Darkness (1966)

Movie Title: Dracula: Prince of Darkness

Year Released: 1966

Rated: Unrated

Runtime: 1h 30min

Genre: Horror

Director: Terence Fisher

Writer: Jimmy Sangster (as John Sansom)

Starring: Christopher Lee, Barbara Shelley, Andrew Keir, Francis Matthews, Suzan Farmer, Charles 'Bud' Tingwell, Thorley Walters, Philip Latham

Review: Two couples traveling through Europe have no choice but to stay the night in a spooky castle. Oh, and the castle belongs to the blood-thirsty Count Dracula. What's the worst that could happen? Hammer Films has made some of the best Gothic horror pictures ever, but I'm sad to say that Dracula: Prince of Darkness isn't one of them. This sequel to Horror of Dracula (1958) is a slooooow-burn. The four lead travelers are not very compelling characters and it takes a full 45 minutes before Count Dracula, played by the legendary Christopher Lee, shows up. Lee doesn't utter a single line of dialogue for the entire picture and doesn't seem very threatening as he silently preys upon our hapless protagonists. And the way that the Count is dispatched in the climax is rather lack-luster. I was disappointed, but if you enjoy Dracula and classic '60s Hammer horror movies then this a scary good time for you.

Stars (out of 4):

Fun Fact: Christopher Lee said he found the lines given to this character so awful that he chose to play it silent. According to writer Jimmy Sangster, Lee is misremembering this as Sangster claims he wrote no dialogue for Dracula in the film.


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