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Dracula Has Risen from the Grave

Friday, January 15 - Sunday, January 17, 2016

Archival 35mm print

“In his third appearance as Count Dracula, Christopher Lee enters Dracula Has Risen from the Grave some twenty minutes into the film. From this point forward he says very little, the substance of his performance manifested in coercively seductive gestures and constant lurking, with his awful bloodshot eyes reiterated in closeup. The film is from 1968, and relative to the time of this writing occupies a space close to the center of the total chronology of all cinematic Dracula adaptations, benchmarking an attempt to graph the visual evolution of what is unquestionably cinema’s most seductive monster.

“Dracula, naturally, is abruptly feared by the denizens of whatever Carpathian village is adjacent to his castle, but he isn’t feared so much by the audience to whatever film he’s in. He’s among the least misshapen, physically overbearing monsters in film, and his murderous advances are rendered with a certain magnetism. When Lee’s Dracula gazes upon the supple nape of one of his victims, he has this paradoxical tenderness, so capable in his seduction that not one of them makes even a meager attempt to dissuade him. It’s only moments after he enters that, to the viewer, he’s no more feared than anyone else in the film; rather, he’s so absolutely charismatic that the scenes without him exist to nourish a suspense in seeing him again.

“Such is the indefatigable charm of Christopher Lee in his most famous role. This charm, however, is often incongruous within the subtext of a particular film. DRACULA HAS RISEN FROM THE GRAVE, in particular, is so abundant with shocks of gooey violence, casual misogyny, and bosomy women that Dracula’s presence within this setting imbues it with elegance and sophistication. Otherwise it’d be a growling party all the time with no one to temper the flames of lust, which all of the young and beautiful central characters seem unable to tactfully contain.” – Not Coming to a Theater Near You

  • Country UK
  • Rating G
  • Year 1968
  • Running Time 92 minutes
  • Director Freddie Francis