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Dracula - Pages From A Virgin's Diary [DVD] [2002]


Price: £19.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Dracula - Pages From A Virgin's Diary [DVD] [2002] + Dracula [DVD] [2006]
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Product details

  • Actors: Zhang Wei-Qiang, Tara Britwhistle, David Moroni, Cindymarie Small, Johnny Wright
  • Directors: Guy Maddin
  • Format: Black & White, Full Screen, PAL, Dolby, Digital Sound
  • Language: English, Italian
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Tartan Video
  • DVD Release Date: 26 April 2004
  • Run Time: 75 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0001IMCV6
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 87,775 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

This avant-garde adaptation of Mark Godden's 'Dracula' ballet, based on the novel by Bram Stoker as well as early film versions such as Murnau's 'Nosferatu', is a collaboration between Canadian film director Guy Maddin and the Winnipeg National Ballet. Filmed in Maddin's trademark crimson-tinted black and white, and largely silent apart from its dramatic Mahler soundtrack, the film was originally produced for Canadian television, but went on to be screened at several international film festivals.

Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By David Longhorn on 14 July 2007
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Yes, indeed, this is weird stuff, but wonderfully entertaining and - dare I use an un-British word? - beautiful. It is based on the stage play rather than Stoker's original novel, with most of the action set in England. Mahler's music makes for a remarkable soundtrack, superb dancers provide the cast, and Guy Maddin delivers a truly original vision. Almost every scene is visually stunning - poetry in motion is, for once, an accurate description. There is also some sly humour (what is Van Helsing going to do with that frock?) social commentary, and subversive religious imagery. Throw in the scene in which Mina tries to perform a certain un-Stokerly act on Jonathan in a nunnery garden and you've got a Dracula that will, I feel sure, be recognised as one of the great movie versions. If not the greatest. Yes, it's that good. The R2 DVD comes with decent extras, including a Maddin short, 'The Heart of the World', which is rather spiffing.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Annette on 17 May 2004
Format: DVD
Who would have thought that the medium of dance, in particular ballet, would provide one of the best ever interpretations of Bram Stoker's novel, 'Dracula'?
This wonderful movie is shot in a style reminiscent of the earliest movies, and is nearly all in black and white, with only blood and money given colour, red and green respectively. The sound is provided by classical music, with the occasional 'real' sound effect.
The action itself is on a large stage with a dreamy, romantic set, and the dancing itself is wonderful. The story is well told, without unnecessary detail added, and the male lead is full of charisma, as all 'Dracula's should be, in order that the seductiveness of his evil charm can be apparent.
If I could give 10 stars to this movie, I would.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 1 May 2011
Format: DVD
Blood! Crosses! Madness! Ballet! Bats! Garlic! And of course, VAMPIRES! "Dracula: Pages From A Virgin's Diary" is exactly the sort of adaptation of Bram Stoker's novel that you'd expect from Guy Maddin -- an elegant, surreal silent film that plays with symbolism, light and splashes of color, as well as the interesting fact that it's all done in ballet.

The first half is the story from the point-of-view of Lucy Westenra (Tara Birtwhistle): she's a wealthy young woman with three suitors she must choose between. However, every night she is visited by Dracula (Zhang Wei-Qiang) until she rises again as a vampire, despite the best efforts of Dr. Van Helsing (David Moroni). You can guess what happens.

With the help of the clairvoyant Renfield (wha?), Van Helsing and the boys find out what is happening back in Dracula's hometown -- a real estate agent named Jonathan Harker (Johnny A. Wright) was attacked by Dracula's brides and imprisoned by Dracula himself. Now, his fiancee Mina (CindyMarie Small) is Dracula's next target.

Guy Maddin is best known for making silent, black-and-white movies in the German expressionist style, and "Dracula: Pages From A Virgin's Diary" is one of those. But it's much more elegant, delicate and subtle than Maddin's other movies, although there are splashes of his surreal style here and there (Lucy's mom lives in a glass coffin/ventilator cranked by maids).

The movie is full of light and shadow, Victorian finery, creeping mists, splashes of brilliant color and some truly striking imagery that lingers in your mind (the body on a stake, bathed in morning light). There are some moments of dark humor ("Infants for supper?") but most of the story is very dramatic and romantic.
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Format: DVD
Very enjoyable. At times rather (intentionally) funny, and beautifully observed in the way it echoes Nosferatu. It should be pointed out that, despite what some have said, this is in no way a faithful adaptation of Stoker's novel. To call it "perhaps the most faithful adaptation" implies a fair degree of unfamiliarity with the source material on behalf of whoever wrote the sleeve notes! A little pretentious, and very much one man's interpretation of what Dracula is "about", nevertheless a lot of fun for any fan of the Dracula story.
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