It’s so dreamy, oh fantasy free me.
If we had a dollar for every Dracula tale committed to film, we’d have… erm, enough money to buy a decent meal. Francis Ford Coppola’s take on the legendary vampire has its author’s name in the title for good reason, as it’s one of the most faithful recerations of Bram Stoker’s classic novel. Presented here in a 25th anniversary edition, remastered in 4K and with a shiny new sound mix, is Bram Stoker’s Dracula on 4K Ultra HD bloody wonderful, or bloody awful?
The story: After his colleague goes a tad bonkers, young lawyer Jonathan Harker (Keanu Reeves – who we expected to drop a “dude!” in at any moment) is sent to Transylvania to look after the affairs of Count Dracula (Gary Oldman). Harker’s client is fascinated by a photo of his bethrothed, Mina (Winona Ryder), who reminds him greatly of a long lost love. So, believing Mina to be her reincarnation, Drac imprisons the young legal eagle (bummer, dude!). Eventually it’s time to head to old Blighty, where our bloodsucker gets decidedly freaky, causing all sorts of havoc. Seriously, somebody has to do something about this outrageous man… Having not seen the movie since release, we remembered that it was quite pervy, but forgot how wonderfully campy it can be – we wouldn’t have been surprised if Oldman broke out into The Time Warp at some points. We mean this with the utmost respect to the classic Gothic yarn, of course.
The 4K disc: Such a broadly “filmic” movie demands a quality transfer, and we doubt that anybody would say “fangs, but no fangs” to that which is on offer here. A pure 4K transfer, some film grain is evident, but it’s never intrusive. Most importantly, detail is at a premium in a movie that’s full of darkness (the prince thereof and otherwise) and, while effective when required, the HDR treatment never makes things inappropriately bright or shiny. As for the audio, well somebody sure had a lot of fun creating this Dolby Atmos mix. Dialogue is clear amongst the score and the flurry of other audio elements flying about at various times, with thunder being a real highlight.
Release date: October 25, 2017
Format: 4K Ultra HD
Starring: Gary Oldman, Winona Ryder, Anthony Hopkins
Want to know what to get next? Check out STACK‘s 4K Ultra HD specifications guide.