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Nadja [DVD] [1996] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

Elina Löwensohn , Peter Fonda , Michael Almereyda    DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
Price: £74.95
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Product details

  • Actors: Elina Löwensohn, Peter Fonda, Nic Ratner, Karl Geary, Martin Donovan
  • Directors: Michael Almereyda
  • Writers: Michael Almereyda
  • Producers: David Lynch, Amy Hobby, Andrew Fierberg, Mary Sweeney
  • Format: Colour, DVD-Video, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: R (Restricted) (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Studio: Pioneer Ldca Inc.
  • DVD Release Date: 30 April 2002
  • Run Time: 93 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004TJGF
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 411,371 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

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Customer Reviews

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4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
Lose yourself in the absorbing dreamworld of Nadja as you follow the convoluted plot through it's eerie and sensous twists and turns. Nadja, a beautiful vampire is lonely and desperate for peace, but will she ever find it? And will her brother Edgar free himself from his evil inheritance? You'll be glued to the screen throughout this gothic tale by the enthralling imagery and the sheer quality of the scenes shot.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, odd film 14 Mar 2007
First off, don't be misled by any use of David Lynch's name here - he had nothing to do with the making of this movie. Nevertheless, the film is excellent, with some great performances, particularly by Elina Lowensohn as the title character, and Peter Fonda as a mad Van Helsing. This is one of those movies that is actually much more simple and straightforward than it appears to be. Like many arty horror flicks, much of it is smoke and mirrors, that enhances what is, at bottom, a fairly traditional plot. The soundtrack is also fantastic, with sensible use of Portishead, and also featuring the Verve and Spacehog. Overall, it's sexy, funny, not really scary, but beautifully stylish and well worth watching.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The pain of fleeting joy 11 Jan 2009
Most vampire movies are all about blood, evil, mayhem, and big jutting fangs that could never actually fit in their mouths.

Fortunately "Nadja" never falls into the usual vampire cliches. Instead it focuses on blood, fuzz and the dark snowy streets of Manhatten, and the vampires that wander through it after Dracula's death. Though it occasionally stumbles on pretension, Michael Almereyda's direction and Elina Löwensohn's ethereal Nadja turn this into a quiet gem.

Dracula is dead. His daughter Nadja (Löwensohn) senses it immediately, and pledges to "start over," although Renfield (Karl Geary) is skeptical. As she wanders through New York, Jim (Martin Donovan) springs his eccentric uncle Van Helsing (Peter Fonda) from jail and gets a pep talk on Dracula and his past. But they don't know that Jim's unhappy wife Lucy (Galaxy Craze) is meeting the beguiling Nadja at a club, and the two of them end up having a brief lesbian tryst.

But that encounter with Nadja is slowly transforming Lucy into another zombielike slave, even as the lovely vampire heads to Brooklyn to meet her dying twin brother Edgar (Jared Harris). But when Van Helsing and Jim try to try to stop Nadja, her vampiric nature is fully reawakened -- and now Van Helsing, Jim and Edgar must stop her before

Technically "Nadja" is a remake of an old sequel to "Dracula," and a few parts of the newer movie show its origins. But other than that, it's pretty much a unique piece of work -- and while the art-house approach gets a little pretentious (that ridiculous story about butter) its haunting beauty is undeniable.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.7 out of 5 stars  42 reviews
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Existential Vampire Flick 16 Jun 2007
By Brent Trafton - Published on
"Nadja" is not like any other vampire movie ever made.

It is creepy, thoughtful, and very funny. This movie has viewers divided. Obviously the people who hate it did not get the humor, which is subtle and dark.

Nadja is the daughter of Dracula living in modern day New York. She describes her father as "a cruel and distant man." For the most part, this film is about the psychological damage caused by growing up in a single parent household with a vampire as the parent. She says things like "the pain I feel is the pain of fleeting joy." Instead of saying "I want to suck your blood," she says "I want to change my life" in a heavy Transyvanian accent.

Like all Dracula films, the arch nemesis is Van Helsing. In this film, he is the crazy uncle. He rides a bicycle and sleeps in a piano.

Nadja's crazy sidekick is Renfield, but we do not find that out until a third the way through the movie.

If you liked films like "Blade" and "Underworld," you are going to hate "Nadja." "Nadja" is for people who normally hate vampire films and looking for great dialog, stylish camera work, and have a quirky sense of humor.

This is easily my all time favorite vampire movie.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not for everyone, but excellent choice for indie & vampire 19 Jan 2001
By listost - Published on
This is a flick I'd recommend to two types: the vampire movie fan, and the indie movie fan. For indie fans, they have much originality to expect from the raw style and small budget of Nadja. It is shot with a simple digital camera and uses pixelated effects. The acting is solid. Elina Löwensohn, who plays Nadja, is brilliant. The script is fresh, despite the parallels with the original Dracula.
For vampire fans, Nadja is a must-see movie. That is, unless you prefer recycled goth-style renditions of the vampire story repeated over and over. Nadja is one of the few *modern* vampire movies that does not incorporate a form of martial arts fighting. There is a somber, crisp mood reflected from both the black and white digital film and the character script. It is a modern and fresh story which remains true to the character motives and rarely duplicated creepiness (though many have tried) of Bram Stocker's classic novel Dracula. You'll also find hidden humerous remarks throughout the film referencing aspects of 'dracula culture'.
Also, the dark theme of the music in the film (from such artists as Portishead) adds to the emotional effect the director has intended.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Casts a blurry spell 10 Aug 2007
By trashcanman - Published on
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
As soon as I saw David Lynch produced this, I knew I was in for a mixed bag. It's not that I don't think the man has talent, it's just that he always pushes the artistry and existentialism of the viewing experience to the point that his films occasionally cease to entertain and devolve into a near-nonsensical, unfocused mess. Still, Lynch didn't direct "Nadja" and it never goes that far, though it veers into that territory from time to time. This is a film custom made for philosophical, art-house vampire fans; the kind who think of goth as The Cure and Morrissey, not Marilyn Manson and Type O Negative. The action is thin, the sexuality brief, and the story difficult to accurately portray in mere words. Definitely a one-of-a-kind sort of vampire flick and that alone is reason enough to look it up and give it a whirl.

"Nadja" is a bit of a remake of the sequel to the original Dracula, entitled "Dracula's Daughter". Nadja is the daughter in question, one half of a pair of fraternal twins. Dracula has had many children through rape, but she and her brother Edgar were the only born from love; thus all of the rest were born hideous idiots allowing them to blend into the population (now THAT's black humor!). Nadja is a sexy vampire maiden of perpetual sorrow, enveloped by the sadness of "fleeting joy"; everything she loves disappears in the end. Her brother, thinking them monsters, wants her dead and is ill from not feeding, her "cruel and distant" father has just been killed by Dr. Van Helsing - who is played in an unusual manner by Peter Fonda- who is now aiming for her, and then there's that whole vampire thing: immortality and blood drinking and all that. Her desire for a fresh start in life and inability to break old habits can be a metaphor for many things; drug addiction and bad romantic choices being the two that strike me as relevant. The black and white picture is beautiful, the music is unique, modern, and evocative, and the image of the modern female vamp's hooded form walking down the street smoking a cigarette strikes me as iconic. Nadja herself is quite likable and the cast overall is good. There's a lot of indie charm to the film and humorous little bits of dialogue thrown in like Renfield chiming into a conversation with the philosophical nugget "love is like rabies". Hard to argue with that assessment. This is definitely a film to see if you're into artistic gothic horror with an indie touch that still maintains a classical feel. That's the good.

The bad is that after the first half, the film sometimes tries too hard and is often inconsistent in both the vampire mythos and the overall quality. The biggest loser of points is the unique but often annoying use of a blurry, pixelated camera view used in scenes where Nadja uses her vampiric influence to blur her victims' minds. A great idea in theory but it looks terrible in practice, inducing headaches in the lengthier scenes and making the onscreen action hard to follow in others. I actually wondered if the DVD was defective for a while the first time I viewed the film, but then I remembered David Lynch was involved and let out a little sigh. More good artistic intentions gone bad. And let's face it, when two beautiful women are kissing passionately onscreen or the protagonist is fighting for her life, nobody needs a blurry picture. Some of the dialogue is a bit distracting as well, with the use of phrases like "psychic fax" -used to explain the telepathic link between vampires- or statements like "blood is like chewing gum to these creatures" breaking the sophisticated and otherworldly feel of the film. Some of the plot points are of the WTF variety and the climax is more of an anticlimax, though the ending is somewhat fitting for the character. Still, much more could have been done storywise.

The bottom line is this: if you're looking for the orgy of sex and violence that the back of the box promises, you may as well go buy a coaster because that's all this DVD will be good for (well, that and a non-nude sex scene involving period blood); but if you want a thoughtfully different approach to vampires on film give this one a try. It will never be my favorite vampire film, but it is surely a worthy addition to my undead library.

3 1/2 stars, rounded down because Amazon won't let me change my rating.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Better than most B Films 11 April 2000
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Rich in metaphors, the noveau style of Nadja makes viewing it worthwhile. Whereas other low budget films of this genre tend to over-do the blood and gore aspects of the vampiric lifestyle, director Almereyda foregos that method, opting instead to delve into the psychological issues which must haunt an individual who is forced to spend eternity wandering the night and feeding on humans. His play on the ever-present human aspects of the vampire characters makes for interesting viewing, especially when you contrast the vampire Edger, who seeks to live a "normal" existence with the woman he loves even if it costs him his life, and Nadja, who accepts her lot and attempts to "be all she can be" while still "mourning" the death of her beloved (or possibly not so beloved) father at the hand of Dr. Van Helsing (Fonda).
As a point of criticism, the final clash between the two vampire twins Nadja and Edgar is somewhat anti-climatic. The buildup left you desiring to see more of a struggle or something, leaving you with a feeling betrayal, asking yourself the question, "Was that all?" Another weak area was the filmography during the shots where Nadja attacks her victims. It seems too psychadelic, as Almereyda changes the camera film speed and focus, filming the scenes through a filter in order to provide a "special effect." It seemed he was attempting to capture something sensual, almost sinister, with the moment. However, it failed. All it did for me was become a tad irritating after the first occurence, and soon I found myself longing for a little old fashioned fangs and gore. However, the choice of b&w versus color for the film was excellent, allowing the director the opportunity to splice in vintage Bela Lugosi images during episodes when Nadja reflects on her departed father.
Overall, Nadja is definitely worth viewing. I recommend only the most die hard vampire fans purchase it, as most "normal" fans will find the movie unimpressive, the plot slow, and the "special effects" primitive.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully quirky, vampire art flick 13 Oct 1999
By Brian Davis ( - Published on
This arthouse vampire film from the very talented Michael Almerayda is a wonderfully offbeat, loose retelling of the Dracula story, except that here, the focus is on the title character, the daughter of the famous Count. The setting is updated to New York's East Village, given a positively Transylvannian feel by the terrific black and white photography. Themes of existential identity questions, and dysfuctional, incestuous family relationships (both among the humans and vampires) run throughout the film, and there is a lot of clever, dry humor as well. The humor doesn't detract from the lush, earie atmosphere, though, or from the subtle and beautiful erotic mood centered around Nadja's relationship with a young, married woman, who's uncle-in-law, by the way, just happens to be a crazy, alcoholic who knows about vampires, and just happens to be named Van Helsing (Peter Fonda is terrifically wierd and funny in the part). The rest of the cast is superb too, especially Hal Hartley veterans Elina Lowensohn as Nadja and Martin Donovan as Najda's lover's befuddled husband. Galaxy Craze, an actress I'd never seen before, is mesmerizing as Nadja's human love, Lucy. "Nadja" is the best of Almerayda's films to date, but also worth checking out is his recent variation on the Mummy theme, "The Eternal", and his earlier film "Twister" (not the flying cows movie). "Nadja" is, by the way, my personal pick for all-time favorite vampire movie.
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