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DVD Review

Dracula's Daughter (1936)


Starring: Otto Kruger, Gloria Holden, Marguerite Churchill and Edward Van Sloan
Universal Classic Cinema
RRP: £9.99
Certificate: PG
Available 05 May 2008

When he is discovered by uniformed police to be in the close proximity of two dead bodies, Professor Von Helsing admits to destroying one of them - Count Dracula, whom he claims was a dangerous blood-sucking vampire. The Commissioner of Scotland Yard knows his friend is a learned man, but can't prevent him being put on trial for murder. Von Helsing enlists the professional aid of Dr Garth, who himself is suffering the attentions of the mysterious Countess Marya Zaleska - the daughter of Dracula. But what does she want with him?...

The first thing I have to say about this one is that it's a direct transference; there has been no attempt to clean-up the picture and therefore the music goes out of tune on a regular basis.

The stand-out performance comes from Edward Van Sloan as a very composed and insistent Von Helsing. The character of Countess Zaleska is a damp squib, with no emanating presence or power. In fact, she does nothing except hypnotise a couple of people with her ring. Even a re-telling of the classic line "I never drink... wine," spoken by Bela Lugosi in Dracula, carries no real conviction.

The policemen are the light-relief here with their commoner comments and reactions to their 'better's' words, such as:

Policeman: "How long's he been dead?"

"Von Helsing: About 500 years."


Ty Power

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