Wednesday, October 10, 2012

October Challenge: Vampyr (1932)

Vampyr (1932)

This is one of those movies I have known about forever but never had the chance to see. Well now I can say I have seen it.

Vampry is loosely based on  J. Sheridan Le Fanu's short stories in "Through a Glass Darkly" including the most famous one, Carmilla. The movie, while slow, is full of atmosphere and is generally very creepy.  The whole thing seems like some sort of weird dreamscape than anything else.
There are many scenes in this film that are quite famous really.  The one legged guard with his independent shadow, the look of pure terror on the face Allan Grey (Julian West  aka producer Nicolas de Gunzburg) and the scene where he put into a coffin. One of my favorites are where the skulls all turn to watch the vampire enter a room. It worked just as good here as it did 80 years later in Doctor Who.   I am going to need to use that sometime.

There is a lot here that reminds me of Nosferatu, not just the black & white or the fact that they are both German cinema, but something in the tone.  These vampires are death and pestilence. I like have the vampire has the ghosts of convicted murderers in it's service (well, at least in the book that Allan is given).

The tale is nothing we have not seen before. Vampire attacking humans and feeding off of them.  But in 1932 this was all still new ground.    The interesting twist in this movie is the doctor character is actually in league with the vampire.

I am glad I finally got to see this.

Tally: Watched 10, New 8

What are you watching?

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