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on 25 November 2015
Nosferatu (1922) is one of the most iconic horror films ever, but watching the wrong version can kill it more surely than a stake through the heart. The majority of copies around are incomplete, in black and white and have badly inappropriate music. Amazon unhelpfully lumps all the reviews together so before buying, copy and paste this URL into your browser:


This in-depth article details Nosferatu's history, different versions, and every restored Blu-ray and DVD available worldwide!
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 9 September 2015
This 1922 mute film is an impressive masterpiece of cinema and possibly the best vampire movie ever. Albeit very old, it is still not aged - and I think it never will. Below, more of my impressions, with some LIMITED SPOILERS.

"Nosferatu" is the first cinema adaptation of Bram Stoker's "Dracula", but as the producers were unable to acquire the rights to the title, it was decided to change the name of the main character to Graf (or Count) Orlok. Similarly the word "vampire" was replaced with "nosferatu", a term used in Romanian folk tales to design many kind of sinister forces of the night, which Bram Stoker considered in his book as a synonym of "vampire". Some other changes were also introduced, but the main story nevertheless follows the lines of Bram Stoker's book - with the exception of the ending...

The film begins therefore with a certain Thomas Hutter, who lives in the fictitious German city of Wisborg and is a quite happy fellow, married to beautiful Ellen. Then one day his employer, a somehow shady real estate dealer named Knock, sends Hutter to Transylvania to visit a new client named Count Orlok, who desires to acquire a residence in Wisborg. And then the film REALLY begins...

This being a black and white silent movie, it is of course very different from most of other vampire films - but this is precisely what gives it an unique flavour. F.W. Murnau used all the tricks available in his trade at this time to make this film really scary and especially incredibly atmospheric and he succeeded - BIG TIME! The vampire is in no way a dangerously charming aristocrat as in later films with Bela Lugosi and Christopher Lee - here he is a freakishly creepishly grotesque creature, which makes the viewer feel uncomfortable from the first moment we see him. Actor Max Schreck who plays the vampire (and who by the way was a handsome man) was completely transformed by make up and other characterisation but he especially did an incredible job by using the body language in such a way that we really have an impression that Count Orlok is NOT human! This is an incredible performance!

The performance of actors, the atmospheric music, the tricks of lights and shadows and impressive cinematography, all this contributed to make this film into something exceptionnal. Released in 1922 "Nosferatu" is a very old, even ancient thing, but it didn't really age and probably never will anymore, but to the contrary, it will keep haunting generation after generation of humans - exactly like a vampire...)))

The "Masters of Cinema" DVD is a very good version, cleaned and restored, to the greatest delight of the viewers. I am very glad that I bought and watched it and I intend to keep this DVD as long as DVD players exist. I don't have words strong enough to recommend it so I will just say, BUY IT, SEE IT and KEEP IT!
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on 24 November 2016
This is a review for the AG/23rd Century release. The DVD features the film only in a reasonable print. The movie is accompanied by a piano&organ soundtrack. The EUREKA version that contains some excellent extras and is vastly superior but for £1.55 it cannot be sniffed at.
The film is a classic of German expressionist cinema. Made in 1922 by Freidrich W. Murnau the film has a nightmarish quality that has rarely been equalled. The locations in Germany and Slovakia give the piece great authenticity and scope, bringing it closer to Bram Stoker's novel.
However it is Max Shreck as Count Orlock that remains imprinted on the memory.
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on 18 January 2014
This dual-format reissue of Masters of Cinema's 2007 release of Murnau's Nosferatu is beautifully packaged, packed with information and carries a striking print of this silent film. The seller got it to me very quickly and it's in perfect, new condition. If I have a single criticism, it's that Masters of Cinema included the packaging label as a separate piece of paper with the steelbox, and the box is too snug within to store the paper. So, if I want to keep the information on what's included (which I do), it has to be as a loose sheet of flimsy paper outside this sturdy box! :P
The print, as I said, is unbelievably lovely: in spite of still-extant scratches, dust and gate-hair, the image is somehow still so clear it at times looks like reality within the confines of my screen. There are two commentaries: the original from the earlier release is painfully dull and not at all informative, while the new one for the rerelease is breezy, insightful and entertaining. A German documentary on Murnau (with emphasis on Nosferatu) is included which is what one might expect from a television doc: informative, but not particularly entertaining and never going beyond the factual. The booklet included gives some essays that tend to witter on a bit about symbolism and texture, and so don't add much to the experience of the film but are nice to have as input to the whole.
If you're looking to buy a copy of this movie, this is the way to go. If you're not...then you should be, and this is the way to go. :D
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HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERon 21 September 2009
This first on screen dramatisation of Bram Stoker's classic Gothic tale, Dracula (the name was changed for copyright reasons), set the bar incredibly high for later films. F.W Murnau serves up an amazingly dark vision, quite different from the opera capes and suavity traditionally associated with Dracula ever since Bela Lugosi's characterisation. Apart from the name changes, this version is one of the closest to the book I can remember.

Subtitled `Eine Symphonie Des Grauens' (A Symphony Of Terror), the piece seems almost operatic in its scale and flows like a nightmarish ballet. The accompanying soundtrack, a new full orchestral recording of the newly rediscovered original score, helps create this feel.

Max Schreck's Count Orlock is as far removed from Christopher Lee's Gentlemanly Count as it is possible to get. Here the vampire is presented as a force of nature, totally bestial and demonic. Utterly unable to integrate into normal society and pass for human he lives a parasite on the outskirts, using low cunning and demonic powers in order to obtain a new food supply. Where as you wouldn't mind having later vampires as dinner guests, this creature is totally without redeeming features.

It's not just Max Schreck's amazing make up and utterly convincing performance that makes this film. The cinematography is groundbreaking and iconic. Who can forget those scenes of coffins on carts trundling along empty streets, of misshapen shadows creeping around at night (how can a mere shadow make such an impression?) and the iconic shot of Orlock rising from his coffin to terrorise the ship's crew. There are images and scenes here that are so powerful that they will be familiar to people who have never actually seen the film.

Aside from the technical mastery, the film itself is adsorbing and totally chilling, well worth a watch by anyone interested in classic cinema. The presentation on this disk is another triumph from the impressive Eureka masters of cinema series. The film is nicely cleaned up and presented with the best possible picture (allowing for the fact it's nearly 90 years old) in its original 1.37:1 aspect ratio. Intertitles are in German, with the option for subtitles in a variety of languages including English. The soundtrack is in an impressive 5.1 surround sound, and the new orchestration matches the film perfectly. There is a second disk with a series of impressive documentaries regarding the making of the film, and the restoration process. There is also an 80 page booklet with an interesting series of essays.

All in all, a 10 out of 10 presentation of an iconic classic. Well worth the money. Recommended for all fans of classic horror films, German art house cinema, historical cinema, or just good films in general.

PS - for an interesting (fictionalised) account of the making of the film, I recommend you look out `Shadow of the Vampire', starring Willem Dafoe as Schreck and John Malkovitch as Murnau. The central premise is that Schreck really WAS a vampire, used by Murnau in an attempt for perfect realism.
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on 17 July 2014
THIS REVIEW IS FOR THE EUREKA MASTERS OF CINEMA EDITION OF NOSFERATU. MAKE SURE YOU ARE BUYING THIS VERSION. After having endured several dreadful copies of Nosferatu, I am delighted by Eureka's Masters of Cinema blu ray edition. Taken from several different prints and preserving the original German intertitles (with English subtitles), the HD picture really is astonishing. Murnau's photography is beautiful, especially given that the print was tinted to indicate night and day, and the picture quality here demonstrates the beauty of his lighting and composition at its best.

Another pitfall I have found with many budget releases of silent films is that the score is often dreadful, but here we get the full original score performed by a full orchestra. I have seen Nosferatu several times, but never have I enjoyed it so fully than watching this version. Don't go with an inferior budget version, spend an extra couple of quid and go for the Eureka edition.
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on 6 December 2012
I would have given this 5 stars, but the product doesn't match Amazon's description, and as the purpose of this facility is to review the product itself, then I have to say I'm very disappointed with it.

The Amazon description states that this product comes with 2 dvd's with two versions of the movie and loads of extra features. What you actually get is 1 dvd with 1 version of the movie, and no extra features at all! I know it was cheap, but I at least expect to get what was in the item description. Can't fault the movie though, it's a classic, 5 stars for the movie, 1 star for Amazon!
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on 30 November 2007
This is an important release. I doubt if even the director saw the movie looking as good as it does now! I honestly believe he'd sob with joy and amazement at the way his great film has been honoured. The restoration is quite stunning. Here we have a film from the birth of cinema looking immaculate. If you like horror films then this film has to be in your collection. If you like cinema you should have this film. Sorry to go on but after years of watching scratched, badly cropped and 'knackered' copies Masters of Cinema have made my day. Check out the 'extras' and 80 page book! It's a joy.
Can we please have Cabinet of Dr Caligari restored now please?
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on 13 September 2014
Hard to watch, silent, slow film but really mysterious and unsettling. Never seem such a portray of a vampire: with no charme at all. A kind of beast, a symbol of moral degradation, so incredibly depicted by direction, photography and the powerful performance of max wreck
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on 6 December 2013
This film is simply amazing !!! It is very unlike any modern horror film (obviously) in that it leaves a great deal to the imagination - because it had to as there were very few special effects in those days. Now my imagination is a good deal worse than any possible reality, therefore, this film really scares the daylights out of me still today. I first watched it when I was in my teens and now, despite knowing full well what is going to happen, how and when, it still has a much deeper effect on me than any other horror film I have ever seen. Max Schrek's fingers as he walks up that staircase is something I shall never forget ! For a director to be able to so much in 1922 is just amazing.
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