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on 12 August 2017
I remembered this from my student days, when we spent Saturday nights around the telly, entertained by the double-horror bills (on BB2, I think), whilst stuffing our faces with pizza and engaging in other student-type, er, practices (Kronos's Chinese herb pipeweed should give you a clue). I have a soft spot for the old Hammer stuff. This is a slightly different take on the vampire genre, and has the odd glimmer of off-beat style and flair here and there, courtesy of its script and direction by Brian Clemens, who was responsible for The Avengers and its cult essence. Unfortunately Kronos has not worn as well as my memory would have wished, and the quality of the print on the DVD is abysmal in low-lit scenes (in other words, you can't actually see what is going on). I don't know if a better print is available in another format.

Anyway: Captain Kronos (Horst Janson) is itinerant after the end of the Napoleonic Wars, travelling with his hunchback professor comrade to - yes, you've guessed it - seek out and destroy vampires wherever they be, in Mittel Europe at least. He's led to the village of an old doctor friend, to investigate the demise of people who've been found with the life sucked out of them, left as wizened relics.... I'd never heard of Horst Janson before this film and must confess I've never heard of him since, but he isn't that bad an actor, just lacking in charisma (think James Hunt crossed with Bjorn Borg). There are some excellent sword fighting scenes and a chance to see old stalwart actors like Ian Hendry and Wanda Ventham. The story has a slightly unexpected twist, there is a maverick touch when an innocent maiden goes to church - the place of safety, surely - to pray, and the silhouette of the cross on the wall begins to move its arms. So, a nostalgic revist to a fondly recalled oldie; but get a better print if you can, and maybe buy with a couple of friends to get better value.
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on 24 April 2015
I first saw this soon after it was released in 1973, and I've been a fan ever since. The opening is unforgettable - a handsome rider on a horse (Kronos, played by Horst Janson) canters across a lush landscape, followed by a rattling wagon loaded with stakes, crosses, and other tools of the vampire-hunting trade, driven by a black-clad hunchback (Professor Grost, John Cater). They've been summoned by the local schoolteacher, an old friend of Kronos, to investigate the death of a young girl who has been drained of her youth.

Captain Kronos is a real oddity in the Hammer oeuvre, featuring a vampire-hunting team that uses weird (early 19th century or thereabouts) science to track down and eliminate vampires in a plot which plays out like a cross between a spaghetti western and the stereotypical vampire adventure, and features vampires that break most of the usual rules. Unlike Hammer's usual fare there are none of the usual suspects - no Dracula, Camilla, or Van Helsing - and many of the usual tropes simply don't work. Almost anyone can be a vampire, and no two are exactly alike, in powers or weaknesses. At one point an important character is horrified to discover that he has actually become a vampire unknowingly, and we're then treated to a harrowing series of "experiments" to find out exactly how his type of vampirism works and how he can be killed. As the story progresses the body count rises, with Kronos responsible for as many deaths as the vampires, leading to an eventual bloody resolution. It's all played out with immense style and occasional flashes of humour.

Rumour has it that there were originally intended to be several Kronos films, but for some reason it never happened, Hammer chose instead to stick to Dracula and the other old familiar tropes. It's a real shame, because this film had a witty style singularly lacking from Hammer's usual extruded vampire product.
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on 12 June 2013
One thing I always liked about Hammer is the immersion you get from watching these old movies. No one besides Hammer and Lucio Fulci could create a world on display that sucks you in right away. Movies that if watched in the right frame of mind. Make you want to be there with the characters in the movie. Such a thing is rare to come by these days. These are the sorts of movies that are a prime example of "escapism" at it's finest.

The quality of this Hammer release is pretty decent for a DVD. The sound is good and the picture quality is very good for a DVD and also for a movie made in the early 70s upgraded to DVD. I'm impressed since the movie is older than me (I'm 34). For the price it's at at the moment (just under £6) it's a bargain for a classic like this. It most definitely is. And take my word for it folks. There is nothing wrong with the picture quality or sound quality. I watched it on my PS3 and on a stand alone DVD player. Works fine on both it does.

My only complaint about this is there was never any sequels. I read they had plans on making a series of Kronos movies. Pity it never happened. We need more movies with this sort of atmosphere to them. Not this run of the mill sequel existing only to make cash efforts we get nowadays.

The version this review was based on is from HAMMER: THE COLLECTION.
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on 24 November 2012
DVD Release Reviewed: DD Video

Captain Kronos Vampire Hunter travels the land slaying vampires with stakes, crosses and a samurai sword!

All the classic Hammer ingredients in this one, but with an extra something that makes it one of the best. It is somehow a notch above other Hammer horrors, but what that 'x factor' is I cannot put my finger on. It's a shame a sequel was never made unfortunately.

Great cast despite none of the Hammer regulars like Peter Cushing etc. Horst Janson as Kronos reminded me almost of a character in a western, instead of quick draw with a gun it was with swords. Fantastic. Caroline Munro more beautiful than ever. The hunchback assistant was another great character too as was Ian Hendry's small role. Too many to mention really.

This one certainly has it all, cannot recommend it enough.

Three cheers for Captain Kronos.
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on 5 October 2015
Definitely one of Hammer’s best offerings, although strangely underrated when it first appeared. Unfortunately, the image quality on this DVD is really not up to snuff and the sound isn’t too good either - hence the 3 stars. A rather disappointing product. A touch of re-mastering would do it no harm at all.
I have now returned this DVD to Amazon.
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on 6 July 2012
Why o why didn't I take heed of the other reviews before buying this?? Do not buy this DVD. Like me, I know you're longing to get hold of a copy of Kronos. It's a cool later day Hammer cult film with a great story; Ace swordsman, clever hunchback professor and sex on legs Caroline Munroe battling bloodsuckers in the forests of Boreham Wood...I mean deepest darkest eastern europe but it's bloody terrible print. Truly unwatchable. I too like some other reviewers can't believe it's got the Hammer logo on it. Trust me, great film - awful product.
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on 14 September 2013
I have recently purchased the DD version which if it helps is what the pictured disc cover looks like - Hammer logo and the film title in garish green with Caroline Munro lurking at the bottom (!) I got confused for a while because the Amazon reviews cross over to all versions. This version has the booklet and you should not be put off by the very grainy picture on Amazon. And what about the film itself which I haven't seen for many years? Not quite as refreshing as it was way back then but still an enjoyable romp. I couldn't help having flashbacks to The Avengers because of the incidental music provided by Laurie Johnson (a la The Avengers). Strange mix of spaghetti western-style swordplay and classic Hammer horror.
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on 30 January 2016
Import .in English 'Captain kronos vampire hunter'
Slightly different from other 70s vampire yarns that makes it all the better

Picture and sound great. What you. Would expect from blue ray

Menu is in Spanish and is easy to navigate

Region b so its ok for UK blu players
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on 22 March 2014
I loved this film brings back memories of late nite horror from the 70s.
Great actors from hammer films from a time when British horror led the way in atmosphere somthing we sadly dont get from modern films theses type of films will never be made in the same way again unfortunately
as a collector of 60s and 70s horror iam just so glad these are available to buy now and not just a distant memory.
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on 16 March 2012
Today 16-03-2012 I bought this Icon copy after reading earleir reveiws suggesting quality issues had been resolved.If this is the good copy I'd hate to see the bad one almost unwatchable.Just to be clear im talking about the Icon "Hammer the collection" copy. Even in 1974 at 3am, in the woolwich odean, through a dexhadrin distorted haze of marijuana smoke it looked better than this.
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