Blu-ray Review “Dracula: Prince of Darkness”

dracula66Actors: Christopher Lee, Barbara Shelley, Andrew Keir, Francis Matthews, Suzan Farmer, Charles ‘Bud’ Tingwell
Directors: Terence Fisher
MPAA Rated: Not Rated
Studio: Millennium Entertainment
Release Date: September 17, 2013
Run Time: 90 minutes

Film: 4 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Hammer is known for delivering some of the best horror films of our time. “Dracula: Prince of Darkness” is the follow up to “Horror of Dracula (1958)”, which started Christopher Lee as the Count. In this film, he does not speak a single word in the film and yet still delivers such a great performance. His red eyes literally hypothesize you. The film was released in 1966 and yet it still works so well. It is so refreshing to see a classic vampire flick where crosses and light have such an amazing effect. Highly recommend for any fan of classic horror and of course Hammer flicks.

Four English tourists who are holidaying in the Carpathians are warned to avoid the castle in town. But when they are abandons in the mountains due to fear from the locals, they seek refuge by a carriage with no rider which leads them right to that very same castle they warned against visiting. They are welcomed by Klove (Philip Latham), who happens to be the sinister manservant of Count Dracula (Christopher Lee). He has plans for them to bring his master back to life.

The Blu-ray presentation from Millennium Entertainment is amazing. The 1080p transfer looks amazing and you forget that this film is nearly 50 years old. The audio track though in terms of Blu-ray standards is not amazing since it is only a Dolby Digital 2.0 track but I have to admit though it still sounded pretty amazing despite it not being HD. James Bernard’s score sounded brand new and very powerful, which is always a must with a Hammer production. This release also includes exclusive collectible lobby cards, which are a great bonus.

In terms of special features, this release continues to impress. There is a great commentary track with Christopher Lee, Suzan Farmer, Francis Matthews and Barbara Shelley. Must listen for any fan. There is a classic World of Hammer episode included “Hammer Stars Christopher Lee”. There is a documentary called “Back to Black. There is a “Restoration Comparison”, which really shows the shape of this film prior to this release and shows how much work went into making it look this good. Lastly there is the restored original trailer and stills gallery included.

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