History Film / BramStokersDracula

28th Mar '18 7:01:11 AM alnair20aug93
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Flash forward to [[VictorianLondon England, 1897]]. A clerk named Renfield (Music/TomWaits) is gibbering in his [[BedlamHouse asylum cell]] while his replacement, Jonathan Harker (Creator/KeanuReeves), travels to Transylvania to complete the sale of various properties around London to a certain Count Dracula who is ''extremely'' intrigued when he sees a picture of Harker's bride-to-be, Mina Murray, as she looks ''remarkably'' like a certain lost love...


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Flash forward to [[VictorianLondon England, England]], [[TheGayNineties 1897]]. A clerk named Renfield (Music/TomWaits) is gibbering in his [[BedlamHouse asylum cell]] while his replacement, Jonathan Harker (Creator/KeanuReeves), travels to Transylvania to complete the sale of various properties around London to a certain Count Dracula who is ''extremely'' intrigued when he sees a picture of Harker's bride-to-be, Mina Murray, as she looks ''remarkably'' like a certain lost love...




%%* BloodFromTheMouth: Plenty of it!

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%%* BloodFromTheMouth: BloodFromTheMouthb: Plenty of it!



* HollywoodCostuming: The ladies' outfits follow the basic tenets of late-1890's fashion, but some details are just a bit off, like Lucy's unusually low neckline. However, Mina's decade-out-of-style bustle dress is actually an aversion, as it was intended to show that Mina couldn't afford the latest fashions, since she is "only a schoolmistress".

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* HollywoodCostuming: The ladies' outfits follow the basic tenets of late-1890's [[TheGayNineties late-1890's]] fashion, but some details are just a bit off, like Lucy's unusually low neckline. However, Mina's decade-out-of-style bustle dress is actually an aversion, as it was intended to show that Mina couldn't afford the latest fashions, since she is "only a schoolmistress".
7th Mar '18 3:06:04 PM VVK
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The 1992 movie adaption of [[Literature/{{Dracula}} the novel]] directed by Creator/FrancisFordCoppola from James V. Hart's script. Even though it follows the book much more closely than previous ''Dracula'' movies, one of its most obvious features is the romance plot that's not in the book.

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The 1992 movie adaption of [[Literature/{{Dracula}} the novel]] directed by Creator/FrancisFordCoppola from James V. Hart's script. Even though it follows the book much more closely than previous ''Dracula'' movies, one of its most obvious features is the a romance plot that's not in the book.
7th Mar '18 3:05:41 PM VVK
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The 1992 movie adaption of [[Literature/{{Dracula}} the novel]] directed by Creator/FrancisFordCoppola from James V. Hart's script.

to:

The 1992 movie adaption of [[Literature/{{Dracula}} the novel]] directed by Creator/FrancisFordCoppola from James V. Hart's script.
script. Even though it follows the book much more closely than previous ''Dracula'' movies, one of its most obvious features is the romance plot that's not in the book.
11th Dec '17 9:52:09 AM TheNerevarine
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* ChristianityIsCatholic: Averted, despite the fact that the director came from an Italian-American Catholic background. Most of the Christianity we see is very Orthodox influenced since it's set in Romania, and Mina and Jonathan's wedding is very much an Orthodox-flavored wedding. Count Dracula's castle likewise also has a lot of Byzantine-inspired murals and mosaics.

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* ChristianityIsCatholic: Averted, despite the fact that the director came from an Italian-American Catholic background. Most of the Christianity we see is very Orthodox influenced since it's set in Romania, and Mina and Jonathan's wedding is very much an Orthodox-flavored wedding. Count Dracula's castle likewise also has a lot of Byzantine-inspired murals and mosaics.mosaics, which is ironic considering that the historical Vlad the Impaler was a Catholic in contrast to the Ortodox majority in Romenia.
10th Dec '17 10:13:27 AM JulianLapostat
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* ByronicHero: Count Dracula goes from being a Holy Warrior of Christianity to a Demonic servant upon the death, and supposed damnation of his beloved wife, believing that God forsaked and punished him simply because he was acting as the culture and society of his time expected a good Christian King should have behaved. In the late 19th Century, he's a decadent aristocrat living a cursed, desperate, existence simply for the chance to reunite with his beloved with his magic rituals competing, poorly, against the scientific, modern, advanced world of London in the British Empire. It's been noted by many critics that had Dracula been written in the early [=1900s=] during the Romantic era, he would undoubtedly be made sympathetic by the likes of Byron and Shelley (Percy and Mary), and Coppola is very much a Romantic in the same mould.

to:

* ByronicHero: Count Dracula goes from being a Holy Warrior of Christianity to a Demonic servant upon the death, and supposed damnation of his beloved wife, believing that God forsaked and punished him simply because he was acting as the culture and society of his time expected a good Christian King should have behaved. In the late 19th Century, he's a decadent aristocrat living a cursed, desperate, existence simply for the chance to reunite with his beloved with his magic rituals competing, poorly, against the scientific, modern, advanced world of London in the British Empire. It's been noted by many critics that had Dracula been written in the early [=1900s=] [=1800s=] during the Romantic era, he would undoubtedly be made sympathetic by the likes of Byron and Shelley (Percy and Mary), and Coppola is very much a Romantic in the same mould.
4th Dec '17 12:40:29 AM JulianLapostat
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* ByronicHero: Count Dracula goes from being a Holy Warrior of Christianity to a Demonic servant upon the death, and supposed damnation of his beloved wife, believing that God forsaked and punished him simply because he was acting as the culture and society of his time expected a good Christian King should have behaved. In the late 19th Century, he's a decadent aristocrat living a cursed, desperate, existence simply for the chance to reunite with his beloved with his magic rituals competing, poorly, against the scientific, modern, advanced world of London in the British Empire.

to:

* ByronicHero: Count Dracula goes from being a Holy Warrior of Christianity to a Demonic servant upon the death, and supposed damnation of his beloved wife, believing that God forsaked and punished him simply because he was acting as the culture and society of his time expected a good Christian King should have behaved. In the late 19th Century, he's a decadent aristocrat living a cursed, desperate, existence simply for the chance to reunite with his beloved with his magic rituals competing, poorly, against the scientific, modern, advanced world of London in the British Empire. It's been noted by many critics that had Dracula been written in the early [=1900s=] during the Romantic era, he would undoubtedly be made sympathetic by the likes of Byron and Shelley (Percy and Mary), and Coppola is very much a Romantic in the same mould.
4th Dec '17 12:37:07 AM JulianLapostat
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Despite the title, the film strays from the original novel [[InNameOnly considerably at times]], with the most significant alterations made to the nature of the relationship between Dracula and Mina.

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Despite the title, the film strays from the original novel [[InNameOnly considerably at times]], with the most significant alterations made to the nature of the relationship between Dracula and Mina.
4th Dec '17 12:34:37 AM JulianLapostat
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** Coppola was also alluding to the fact that UsefulNotes/VictorianBritain was the era when UsefulNotes/{{Psychology}} first became a major field. Lucy Westenra's condition and illness is directed in a manner similar to cases of hysteria in the Victorian age, and Van Helsing's weird attitude to sex and vampirism, (i.e. civilization and syphilization proceeds in parallel to each other) is a parody of the patriarchal nature of conventional Freudian psychology, with women's sexuality being controlled, policed and punished by men. Mina repeatedly asks Jonathan and Van Helsing if they would chop her head of like Lucy, or treat her like a beast too. Likewise, the heavy focus in the film on blood-transmitted vampirism aludes to '90s fears and anxiety about sex in the post-AIDS world.

to:

** Coppola was also alluding to the fact that UsefulNotes/VictorianBritain was the era when UsefulNotes/{{Psychology}} first became a major field. Lucy Westenra's condition and illness is directed in a manner similar to cases of hysteria in the Victorian age, and Van Helsing's weird attitude to sex and vampirism, (i.e. civilization and syphilization proceeds in parallel to each other) is a parody of the patriarchal nature of conventional Freudian psychology, with women's sexuality being controlled, policed and punished by men. Renfield is imprisoned in a BedlamHouse symbolizing the more inhumane ways mentally ill people were treated in that time and place. Mina repeatedly asks Jonathan and Van Helsing if they would chop her head of like Lucy, or treat her like a beast too. Likewise, the heavy focus in the film on blood-transmitted vampirism aludes to '90s fears and anxiety about sex in the post-AIDS world.
4th Dec '17 12:32:58 AM JulianLapostat
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** Coppola also noted that the story's setting paralleled the birth of film, and one scene shows Dracula and Mina seeing early films. His aversion of CGI for in-camera effects and technology stemmed from a desire to use primitive special effects like Magic Lantern shows and practical effects in the mode of Creator/GeorgesMelies. In terms of visual effects, the movie is an encyclopedia of the history of the horror film genre itself, alluding to everything from Melies to GermanExpression to Creator/ValLewton, to ''Film/LaBelleEtLaBete'' Creator/RogerCorman, to ''Film/TheExorcist'' (Van Helsing treating Lucy). The characterization of Lucy Westenra and Mina Harker in the film also explores the FinalGirl trope in horror, with Lucy's victimization heavily focused on her sexuality, while Mina more or less commits adultery with Jonathan and willingly encourages Dracula's affections and returns it, and ends up defeating and redeeming the Count.

to:

** Coppola also noted that the story's setting paralleled the birth of film, and one scene shows Dracula and Mina seeing early films. His aversion of CGI for in-camera effects and technology stemmed from a desire to use primitive special effects like Magic Lantern shows and practical effects in the mode of Creator/GeorgesMelies. In terms of visual effects, the movie is an encyclopedia of the history of the horror gothic horror-fantasy film genre itself, alluding to everything from Melies to GermanExpression GermanExpressionism to Creator/ValLewton, to ''Film/LaBelleEtLaBete'' ''Film/LaBelleEtLaBete'', to Creator/AlfredHitchcock, Creator/RogerCorman, to ''Film/TheExorcist'' (Van Helsing treating Lucy). The characterization of Lucy Westenra and Mina Harker in the film also explores the FinalGirl trope in horror, with Lucy's victimization heavily focused on her sexuality, while Mina more or less commits adultery with Jonathan and willingly encourages Dracula's affections and returns it, and ends up defeating and redeeming the Count.Count, presumably surviving the film's events.
4th Dec '17 12:30:24 AM JulianLapostat
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* AdaptationalHeroism: Dracula gets this treatment in the film. He becomes a vampire for renouncing God after his bride kills herself (and the Priest declares that her soul would be eternally damned as a result) and then falls in love with Mina because she is her reincarnation. This backstory comes from the fact that Dracula is an {{Expy}} of UsefulNotes/VladTheImpaler who did oppose the Turks and wage a "Holy War" on behalf of God and protected Europe from Muslim influence. So from his perspective he was punished for doing God's work when his wife died. In addition, Dracula's plot in the original novel of taking over England is omitted.

to:

* AdaptationalHeroism: Dracula gets this treatment in the film. He becomes a vampire for renouncing God after his bride kills herself (and the Priest declares that her soul would be eternally damned as a result) and then falls in love with Mina because she is her reincarnation. This backstory comes from the fact that Dracula is an {{Expy}} of [[NoHistoricalFiguresWereHarmed patterned]] on UsefulNotes/VladTheImpaler who did oppose the Turks and wage a "Holy War" on behalf of God and protected Europe from Muslim influence. So from his perspective he was punished for doing God's work when his wife died. In addition, Dracula's plot in the original novel of taking over England is omitted.omitted, undoubtedly because the hypocritical [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Invasion_literature imperialist projection]] of foreign invader would not be sympathetic to a liberal Italian-American like Coppola.



* AdaptationPersonalityChange: Lucy is an Ingenue, bordering on PuritySue in the books. This film portrays her as flirty and promiscuous, as well as slightly ditzy.

to:

* AdaptationPersonalityChange: Lucy is an Ingenue, bordering on PuritySue in the books. This film portrays her as flirty and promiscuous, as well as slightly ditzy. Of course, given that the novel is an epistolary, and told via multiple characters writing the events in journals, letters and so on, it's possible to interpret some of the book's portrayal of Lucy as Victorian euphemism, especially given Mina's awareness of the InterclassFriendship between her and Lucy, which would prevent people of her generation and background (i.e. upwardly mobile middle-class educated working woman) from being entirely critical of her "social betters".



%%* ByronicHero: Count Dracula.

to:

%%* * ByronicHero: Count Dracula. Dracula goes from being a Holy Warrior of Christianity to a Demonic servant upon the death, and supposed damnation of his beloved wife, believing that God forsaked and punished him simply because he was acting as the culture and society of his time expected a good Christian King should have behaved. In the late 19th Century, he's a decadent aristocrat living a cursed, desperate, existence simply for the chance to reunite with his beloved with his magic rituals competing, poorly, against the scientific, modern, advanced world of London in the British Empire.



* ChristianityIsCatholic: Averted, despite the fact that the director came from an Italian-American Catholic background. Most of the Christianity we see is very Orthodox influenced since it's set in Romania, and Mina and Jonathan's wedding is very much an Orthodox-flavored wedding. Count Dracula's castle likewise also has a lot of Byzantine-inspired murals and mosaics.



** Coppola also noted that the story's setting paralleled the birth of film, and one scene shows Dracula and Mina seeing early films. His aversion of CGI for in-camera effects and technology stemmed from a desire to use primitive special effects like Magic Lantern shows and practical effects in the mode of Creator/GeorgesMelies.

to:

** Coppola also noted that the story's setting paralleled the birth of film, and one scene shows Dracula and Mina seeing early films. His aversion of CGI for in-camera effects and technology stemmed from a desire to use primitive special effects like Magic Lantern shows and practical effects in the mode of Creator/GeorgesMelies. In terms of visual effects, the movie is an encyclopedia of the history of the horror film genre itself, alluding to everything from Melies to GermanExpression to Creator/ValLewton, to ''Film/LaBelleEtLaBete'' Creator/RogerCorman, to ''Film/TheExorcist'' (Van Helsing treating Lucy). The characterization of Lucy Westenra and Mina Harker in the film also explores the FinalGirl trope in horror, with Lucy's victimization heavily focused on her sexuality, while Mina more or less commits adultery with Jonathan and willingly encourages Dracula's affections and returns it, and ends up defeating and redeeming the Count.
** Coppola was also alluding to the fact that UsefulNotes/VictorianBritain was the era when UsefulNotes/{{Psychology}} first became a major field. Lucy Westenra's condition and illness is directed in a manner similar to cases of hysteria in the Victorian age, and Van Helsing's weird attitude to sex and vampirism, (i.e. civilization and syphilization proceeds in parallel to each other) is a parody of the patriarchal nature of conventional Freudian psychology, with women's sexuality being controlled, policed and punished by men. Mina repeatedly asks Jonathan and Van Helsing if they would chop her head of like Lucy, or treat her like a beast too. Likewise, the heavy focus in the film on blood-transmitted vampirism aludes to '90s fears and anxiety about sex in the post-AIDS world.



* DespairEventHorizon: The false death of Vlad Draculea for Elisabeta, and her suicide for him.

to:

* DespairEventHorizon: The false report of the death of Vlad Draculea for Elisabeta, and her suicide for him.



* FallenHero: From the perspective of Christianity and the times. Dracula was once a servant of the cross, defending Europe from [[ValuesDissonance Muslim influence]].

to:

* FallenHero: From the perspective of Christianity and the times. Dracula was once a servant of the cross, defending Europe from [[ValuesDissonance Muslim influence]].influence]], and then he became a vampire. Van Helsing hangs a {{Lampshade}} later on how he was a terrible person, even by Victorian standards, when he was still a hero as per the norms of his culture.



* GorgeousPeriodDress: With the possible exception of medieval Dracula's armor.

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* GorgeousPeriodDress: With the possible exception of medieval Dracula's armor.armor, which does look rad as hell. The film's costumes were designed by Eiko Ishioka and has a very strong avant-garde approach, to make it look different from the usual period pieces.



* InCaseYouForgotWhoWroteIt: One of the most [[InNameOnly awkward]] examples of this trope, starting with the fact that the core romantic plot between Dracula and Mina isn't in the book. The Internet Movie Database notes, "Director Francis Ford Coppola claims that Bram Stoker's name was included in the title because he has a tradition of putting the author's names in the titles of his movies that are adapted from novels, such as ''Mario Puzo's Film/TheGodfather'' (1972) and ''John Grisham's The Rainmaker'' (1997). Others have claimed, however, that Stoker's name was included in the title to avoid legal action from Universal Studios, who claimed to own the rights to the simple title ''Dracula'' (1931)."
* InNameOnly: Played with. If you take the love story between Dracula and Mina out, the film is actually incredibly faithful to the original novel - minus the HotterAndSexier tone, the change in Lucy's personality and a few other minor details.

to:

* InCaseYouForgotWhoWroteIt: One of the most [[InNameOnly awkward]] examples of this trope, starting with the fact that the core romantic plot between Dracula and Mina isn't in the book. The Internet Movie Database notes, "Director Francis Ford A classic Coppola claims that Bram Stoker's name was included in tradition, this time emblazoned into the very title because he has a tradition of putting the author's names in the titles of his movies that are adapted from novels, such as ''Mario itself, similar to Mario Puzo's Film/TheGodfather'' ''Film/TheGodfather'' (1972) and ''John Grisham's The Rainmaker'' (1997).(1997), albeit on the posters rather than the credits itself. Others have claimed, however, that Stoker's name was included in the title to avoid legal action from Universal Studios, who claimed to own the rights to the simple title ''Dracula'' (1931)."
* InNameOnly: Played with. If you take
Some critics noting how Coppola wanted to explore the love story between Dracula subtext and Mina out, the film is actually incredibly faithful to UnbuiltTrope of the book was emphasizing the literary nature of the original novel - minus the HotterAndSexier tone, the change in Lucy's personality and a few other minor details.to distinguish his film.



* NippleAndDimed



** The LivingShadow sequences also owe something to the Carl Dreyer film ''Vampyr'' (1932).

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** The LivingShadow sequences also owe something to the Carl Dreyer film ''Vampyr'' Creator/CarlTheodorDreyer's ''Film/{{Vampyr}}'' (1932).
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