Christopher Lee – The Real Bloodsucker

Count Dracula is definitely the most famous vampire of all time. Bram Stoker created this gothic horror novel way back in 1897. This blood-sucking vampire became a prototype for many subsequent novels on the vampire topic. The story written by the Irish novelist goes about Count Dracula’s attempts to move from Transylvania to England. He does it mainly to spread his curse and find new victims for bloodsucking. The ending of the novel was later removed where it is written that the Dracula’s castle crumbles and is destroyed after his death.

There are several versions of Dracula that were filmed due to the success of Hammer films starring Christopher Lee as Count Dracula. But none achieved the level of fearsome characterization of the vampire by Christopher Lee. Lee appeared as the vampire in 10 films during the 1960s and 70s, and seven of them were directed by Hammer. Most of these films were successful and that epitomized Lee in the title role. Peter Cushing played Van Helsing, the vampire slayer in most of these films.

The success of these films inspired several other actors and directors to try their hand at different versions the Bram Stoker novel. But no one ever reached the height that Christopher Lee did. I have seen one of the earlier versions called Count Dracula which is a British film that still sends a shiver up my spine. It is made very simply with realistic sets and still is terrifying. Christopher Lee was an accomplished actor and played many other memorable roles. James Bond fans would immediately point to The Man with the Golden Gun.

Several other attempts were made after the Hammer films especially in the seventies to create the same magic. But the Dracula depicted in these films did not come close to the chilling portrayal by Lee in Hammer films. Bela Lugosi who played the Dracula in 1931 was a good competitor but others not really. Gary Oldman in the much-discussed Bram Stoker’s Dracula in 1992 created a lot of hype but he just wasn’t as menacing as Lee. Some took a whimsical look at the story by telling it as a comedy, musical or an animation film. There was also an opera take on the novel. But to the diehard fans of Dracula, the Christopher Lee versions remain the ones to enjoy and cherish. Several versions have been made till date and some are planned in coming years. Let’s see!

Five Films To Watch Before You Turn 30

Not every movie is created equal. The beauty of creating and directing flicks is the endless styles, themes, and messages that can be created. Some remain timeless and seem to become more relevant as time passes. Others, are simply great films that make you feel good about yourself, life, and the world you live in. Still yet, some capture the exact epochs of your life in such a direct and accurate manner that they leave you feeling nostalgic and emotional. Regardless of what movies you enjoy, there is something for everyone. Here are five films to watch before you turn 30.

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

This movie resonates with anyone who has every fallen in love or gone through a horrible break up. After splitting up, Clementine-played by Kate Winslet- signs up for a procedure that will essentially erase all memories of her previous lover Joel, who is played by Jim Carrey. After finding out about this procedure, Joel decide he too will undergo the procedure so that he can also forget about his lost love. As the memories begin to fade, so does their identity and connections they have made to not only their loved ones, but themselves.

The Breakfast Club

For everyone that has ever struggled in and survived their high school years- which is nearly all of us- the Breakfast Club seems to hit the nail on the head. This classic film captures the angst and awkwardness that high schoolers experience with identity, groups, and authority. When 5 high school students from different cliques are brought together to suffer through a Saturday detention, each member has an opportunity to tell their side of the story so that the others may potentially see each other in a different light. By the end of their punishment, they are slightly changed in their views of themselves, each other, and school.

The Silence of the Lambs

Although this movie seems to be well known for its scary villains and unsettling subject matter, the film is, overall, a nod to women’s equality. Clarice Sterling, played by Jody Foster, is a top student enrolled in the training academy at the FBI headquarters. After a serial killer begins hunting down and capturing women to use for their skins, Clarice is ordered to interview Hannibal Lector-played by Anthony Hopkins- to try and gleam some insight into the case. As Clarice goes toe-to-toe with Hannibal’s manipulations, she realizes that he has his own plans and ideas regarding her and his own escape.

The Dead Poets Society

Robin Williams plays John Keating, a teacher in an all boys preparatory school that places a high value on obedience and adherence to its strict high standards and tradition. Using his unique methods and rapport building, John manages to reach the students who are struggling under intense pressure from their families and school authorities. With his guidance, the students are able to build the confidence to pursue their interests and question the concept of absolute obedience to authority.

Clueless

Although not as deep as many of the aforementioned movies, Clueless showed many what the world of rich, shallow, and socially extravagant life could be in all its brutally honest and conflicting glory. Cher, played by Alicia Silverstone, is the top dog at Beverly Hills high until she gets some competition that forces her to re-evaluate herself, her status, and her love life.