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on 3 March 2012
Various reviews have surfaced online that report noticeable audio sync issues on both the blu ray and DVD copies in this set. I have cancelled my pre-order until such time that this issue is fixed and either a re-release happens or a replacement disc is announced. Very disappointing news for Hammer fans who have looked forward to a decent home video release of this film.
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on 5 March 2012
I have just done a like-for-like comparison with my really old Anchor Bay DVD copy and though on that the sound has a kind of divorced pro-synced look and sound, the blu-ray is definitely out of sync and badly so at certain points.
Also DNR (Digital Noise Reduction) has been applied quite aggressively in some places. Notably in the flashback to the original Hammer Dracula at the beginning. I was quite horrified when I first put the disc in. It has a real painting-by-numbers look about it, with all the tones flattened out. I suspect some idiot who hasn't a clue what they were doing thought all that smoke over the image was wrong. Admittedly the rest of the film visually gets better after that truly awful opening.
It beggars belief a lot of the website reviews have not picked up on this really sub-standard release. Plus even the Hammer restoration website tried to tell us everything was alright.
I suggest we all reject this release so something will be done.
What a shame after the superb Quartermass and the Pit blu-ray.
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on 25 April 2012
Well I got the replacement discs today and it's a vast improvement. The sound issues have been corrected, the pretitle sequence has been totally redone. I0000% better. Still not happy at the amount of DNR in the main film but it's still the best version to date until we see what any USA company does.
Impressed with the fact that Studio Canal listened to the complaints. Hopefully there will be no more problems with the widescreen hammer films and leave the grain alone.........

Roger Shore
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on 4 March 2012
I've watched the first twenty or so minutes of this and, for the most part, the audio track is wildly out of synch with the visuals. It's apparent even in the first dialogue-free scenes when a falling trapdoor produces a bang almost a second too late. The scenes in the pub are a frame or two adrift but, by the time the travellers reach Castle Dracula, things are so out of synch it's like watching a dubbed foreign film. The problem is the same on both the Blu-ray disc and the DVD, so the fault is in the master.

I really want these Hammer Blu-rays to succeed, but this particular product is substandard. Was no quality control done at all? Studio Canal need to do the decent thing: recall and replace these discs. They also need to put in place procedures to make sure future titles are unaffected.

UPDATE (7/3/12): Hammer/Studio Canal have announced a replacement scheme. Once I have received the corrected disc I shall alter this review accordingly, presuming that the fault has been fixed.
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on 8 June 2014
THE MOVIE

DRACULA: PRINCE OF DARKNESS is the first sequel to 1958's Hammer classic Dracula and not only one of the best Hammer Dracula movies, but also one of the best Dracula/Vampire movies in general.
Needless to say that Christopher Lee gives another superb performance as the Count, relying only on body language, his presence and charisma and mimic, as again he does not speak a single word, which is very effective as it makes him more menacing. As usual he steals the show.
Unfortunately Peter Cushing does not reprise his role in PRINCE OF DARKNESS, but there are a number of good actors to make up for his absence, namely Andrew Keir, Francis Matthews, Charles Tingwell, Barbara Shelley and Suzan Farmer.
Great direction by Terence Fisher, who doesn't rely much on effects and gore, but on a good score. I especially like the way Dracula feeds by lifting his cape, the camera remains in a distance and the picture fades out. That is brilliant filmmaking without special effects, but very effective. The actual violence is only imagined.
The very few effects PRINCE OF DARKNESS has are very dated and won't shock anyone anymore. This definitely could be a PG today.
I prefer these Hammer Dracula's to any modern Dracula movie, even to 1992's Bram Stoker's DRACULA or INTERVIEW WITH A VAMPIRE.

RATING: 10 / 10

THE BLU-RAY

Reviewed version: 2012 StudioCanal UK Blu-ray
Feature running time: 90 mins. (Unrated)
Rating: Unrated (MPAA) / 15 (BBFC)
Aspect Ratio: 2.36:1 / 16x9
Audio: English 2.0 Mono
Subtitles: English for the Hearing Impaired
Chapters: 12
Extras: Commentaries, Behind the scenes, World of Hammer, Documentary, Restoration comparison, Trailers
Region: B (locked)

Picture quality: C (average picture quality, nothing spectacular)
Audio quality: B (remarkably good for 2.0 mono)
Extras: A (plenty of new extras)
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on 7 March 2012
Notice from StudioCanal UK regarding faulty Dracula Prince Of Darkness Blu-ray/DVD Double-Play discs:

"We recently discovered a small audio synch issue within a couple of scenes of the Dracula Prince Of Darkness discs that were released on the 5th of March.

This problem occurred at the authoring stage where a fix was not implemented despite being supplied.

With this in mind we will be replacing any discs that have this issue present.

Please send your proof of payment and your address to enquiries@vdcgroup.com and we will endeavour to send a working replacement to you promptly."Dracula: Prince Of Darkness [Blu-ray + DVD] [1966]
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on 6 February 2013
I Grew up watching Hammer's Dracula films
so when i found out that DRACULA-PRINCE OF DARKNESS was being released on blu-ray and dvd combo i knew i had to buy it

the first thing i watched was the new Documentary Back to black, fantastic Doco
has interviews with Hammer films Biographers aswell as Barbara shelley and Francis mathews and they've aged bigtime there both in the 80's now
the Doco is excellent Francis and Barbara talk about there experience in the film
it's very unfortunate Christopher lee wasn't interviewed or susan farmer

the other extras are the same as the region 1 Anchor bay release from over 10years ago now
the audio commentary is nothing new that was recorded on the Anchor bay release
aswell as the behind the scenes footage that's on the Anchor bay release aswell

so the only new extra/special feature is the Back to black Documentary

now regarding the picture and audio quality of this dvd and blu-ray release
i've watched both and compared the quality, the region 2 dvd is the same as the original region 2 dvd release from over 5 years ago
but the blu-ray version is pretty good, the picture quality is excellent superb the audio is pretty good to

so i recommend buying this blu-ray/dvd release just for the blu-ray version and the new Back to black Documentary

the Blu-ray is not available on it's own unfortunately and not available in the U.S. too it's only available to buy on amazon uk

if your a big fan of this film, like i am you have to buy the combo that has both Discs, definitely worth the money
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on 25 May 2012
Dracula Prince of Darkness is a great Blu-ray.
The film was shot during hammer's golden era when they made some films in widescreen using a 35mm Half frame pulldown technique.
If your like me a Hammer or even a Christopher Lee/Dracula fan then this is a must have for your collection.
The restoration is reasonably good and the colour is great.
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on 1 August 2012
Lots of people seem to have moaned over this Blu-Ray release not presenting the flm as it should be seen. Whilst I am no expert on talking about film grain and aspect ratios etc, all I can say is that I disagree with them, the colour and scope have never looked better than here, and the fine detail is beautiful. In comparison with the DVD from the Optimum releasing 21 Hammer film box set, this version knocks it clear out of the water.
Any Hammer fans should be thrilled with this release which also has a lot of nice extras, including a new commentary from the main cast, and some interviews and on set footage from 1965. Recommended.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 20 August 2007
This is the second Hammer Dracula film to feature Christopher Lee in the title role. Although Peter Cushing sadly does not reprise his definitive role as Van Helsing this has much to offer.

The film starts with a replay of the final few minutes of the first Hammer Dracula (aka The Horror of Dracula), which is perhaps the greatest moment in the history of Hammer films. From there it develops quickly, with two couples ending up staying at Castle Dracula. Some well known faces make up the rest of the cast including Francis Matthews, Barbara Shelley and Andrew Keir. This film was made eight years after the original and its quite surprising how much more violent and gory it is.

The film was directed by Terence Fisher and you always know with a Hammer film that if he was the director you would get a quality film. He also directed Curse of Frankenstein, The Devil Rides Out, Hound of The Baskervilles, Brides of Dracula and of course the original Dracula (all worth buying). Add this to James Bernard's great score and you have a fine horror film that has stood the test of time really well.
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