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Dracula Père et Fils

Dracula and Son
Die Herren Dracula

France 1976
produced by
Alain Poiré for Gaumont, Productions 2000
directed by Edouard Molinaro
starring Christopher Lee, Bernard Menez, Marie-Hélène Breillat, Catherine Breillat, Mustapha Dali, Bernard Alane, Claude Génia, Jean-Claude Dauphin, Anna Gael, Gérard Jugnot, Raymond Bussières, Xavier Depraz, Anna Prucnal, Jean Lescot, Albert Simono, Arlette Balkis, Geoffrey Carey, Lyne Chardonnet, Robert Dalban
screenplay by Alain Godard, Edouard Molinaro, Jean-Marie Poiré, based on the novel by Claude Klotz and a character created by Bram Stoker, music by Vladimir Cosma

Dracula, Dracula (Christopher Lee)

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Back in the late 18th century, Count Dracula (Christpopher Lee) has found himself a human wife (Catherine Breillat) to procreate, but shortly after giving birth to their son, Dracula vampirizes his wife and she is burnt to death by the sun while being out on her first hunt for human blood.

Romania the 20th century: With Communism having taken over the country, there is little room (or need) for a family of aristocrats like the Draculas, so the count and his son Ferdinand (Bernard Menez) take off to the West ... but get separated on the way.

Ferdinand soon finds abode with an immigrant (Mustapha Dali) in Paris,  and he tries job after job that would allow him to work at night - but with at best limited success. Ferdinand's main problem though is getting blood: You know, all these years, Ferdinand has been fed by his dad and has never grown used to suck blood himself, least of all from humans, so now the fatherless time in Paris sees him slowly wilting away.

The Count meanwhile has landed in London and has become a big moviestar, playing the lead in vampire movies. One such movieshoot takes him to Paris - where he to his greatest surprise and joy finds Ferdinand. The reunion couldn't be happier, and the Count soon invites his son to live with him in his luxury hotel and have a part of the riches he has come to. Then though, the Count and Ferdinand meet Nicole (Marie-Hélène Breillat), a woman who reminds them of Ferdinand's mother - and they both fall in love with her. At first, it seems that Nicole is more interested in the Count, but when she tells him she wants to hire him for a toothpaste ad, he feels insulted - which is a perfect opportunity for Ferdinand to take his father's place (in more ways than one). Soon though, father and son Dracula wage an all-out war over Nicole, which results in the Count throwing his son out, but Ferdinand managing to bed Nicole ahead of the Count.

Eventually, Ferdinand takes a job at a butchery ... where he overfeeds on blood ... and turns human.

Ferdinand and Nicole try to evade Dracula, who must be furious by now, by paying a visit to her family's estate, but he catches up of course. In the finale, Nicole, who has never believed in all the vampire talk to begin with, wants to put an end to it all and draws a curtain to flood the hall with sunlight ... and to her greatest surprise, Dracula disintegrates before her very eyes on the spot ...

 

The main selling point of this movie is of course seeing Christopher Lee making fun of his Dracula image. Unfortunately, that's also the only thing worth seeing in the film, and despite his top-billing he plays second fiddle to Bernard Menez, who approaches his character too much as the harmless but loveable and ultimately insignificant underdog to create much interest or sympathy, let alone carry the film. As for the humour: Some jokes are good, but most are much to obvious (some even annoyingly so), and in all they, too, are to harmless to create much interest. And the romance plot is mostly cheesy, nothing more.

In all, some mmild laughs at least, but nothing worth watching.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Tales to Chill
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On the same day
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you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
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written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
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out now on DVD