Barry Norton

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Drácula (1931, Spanish) Review


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This rarely-seen Spanish-language version of the Dracula story was shot on the same Universal lot, with the same script, and at the same time as the Bela Lugosi version. Lugosi took up the cape by day, Carlos Villarías had the role of "Conde Dracula" by night. He even wore Lugosi's hairpiece. While Villarías and Pablo Álvarez Rubio (as Renfield) provide some of the most dramatic overacting ever caught on film, Drácula on the whole is surprisingly well-made. It's about 25 minutes longer that the English version, which means extra subplots and added pregnant pauses are scattered throughout the film, but watching the laborious process by which the genius residents around Carfax Abbey piece together that their new neighbor is indeed a vampire is something that we'll always want to cherish.
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