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Plot:

In London 1872 – the final battle between Lawrence van Helsing and Count Dracula on top of a coach results in Dracula dying from a stake made from the remains of a wooden wheel. Lawrence dies from his wounds and, as he is buried, a servant of Dracula buries the remains of the stake by the grave and keeps a bottle of Dracula’s ashes and the ring. One hundred years later, the colourful 1972, Johnny, the great-grandson of the servant joins up with a “group” containing Jessica, the grand-daughter of the present vampire hunter, Abraham van Helsing and with their unknowing help resurrect Dracula in the 20th Century who is determined to destroy the house of Van Helsing, but who can believe that The king of the Vampires really exists and is alive – in 20th Century London?

Also Known As: Dorakyura '72, Дракула 1972 Soviet, Dracula Chases the Mini Girls, Dracula Chelsea '72, Dracula '73, Vampyren jager hotpants, Dracula 1972 D.C., Dracula jagt Mini-Mädchen, 1972: Dracula colpisce ancora!, Can pazarı, Draculan kosto, Dracula A.D. 1972, Dracula '72, Drácula 72, Dracula i dag, Dracula jagt Mini-Mädchen West, ドラキュラ'72, Drácula no Mundo da Minissaia, Drácula 1972 D.C., Draculas Bloodstory, Dracula Today, Dracula 1972, Drakoulas 1972, Drácula 73

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  • vojtech-sedlacek
    vojtech sedlacek

    You really can’t blame Hammer studios for trying to do something different with their long-running Dracula franchise by the early ’70s. This film has its share of detractors and most of those slam it because it feels “dated” to them, or because the legendary Count seems oddly out of place amongst all those groovy “modern-day” hipsters, man. For me, the trouble with “Dracula A.D. 1972” has nothing to do with its welcome new setting — after all, if we accept that Dracula is a supernatural being who can sustain himself throughout the ages, why wouldn’t that also include his living amongst us during the late 20th century? — but unfortunately, the problem is that very little is done to take full advantage of the circumstances.The movie opens with a spectacular prologue set in the 1800’s where a runaway horse-drawn carriage races through a shaded forest with two figures atop it, fighting hand-to-hand: Professor Van Helsing (Peter Cushing) and the vampire king himself, Count Dracula (Christopher Lee). In the midst of their struggle, the wagon crashes into a tree and is demolished. But the wise vampire hunter manages to grab a broken cart wheel and thrusts its wooden spoke into Dracula’s chest, killing his enemy and reducing him to ashes. Van Helsing himself lives just long enough to witness Dracula’s decay before succumbing to his death. But no sooner has the world become better off, when a young disciple of the Count (Christopher Neame) arrives at the scene to secure Dracula’s remains in a vial.We then leap to London “today” (meaning 1972, that is) where the disciple, now referred to as “Johnny Alucard” (cute), heads a naive young group of thrill-seeking teens (or twenty-somethings). They’ve tried everything they can think of for kicks, like crashing high society parties unannounced where they can boogey to the mod sounds of the performing rock group Stoneground (who do two songs). Alucard’s latest scheme is to involve his gang in a devilish black mass. Gathering the guys and gals together inside the ruins of an old church, Alucard performs a satanic ritual which resurrects Dracula once more, and this time one of the naive chicks who is first to fall victim to him is raven-haired Caroline Munro. But Alucard and Dracula are more interested in corrupting Jessica (Stephanie Beacham), the blonde member of their little circle, who happens to be the great-granddaughter of the original professor. She is currently living with her grandfather (again played by Cushing) who himself is the descendant of the first Van Helsing, as well as being skilled in the black arts. He is a great asset to Scotland Yard when the mysterious murders start piling up, though much of the dull stretches in the movie lie within tiresome scenes of Cushing meeting with police investigators, and it’s usually a challenge for me to remain alert for them any time I watch this. It’s never a bad thing to see Cushing and Lee in another film together, and they do get to shine in an updated climax where Dracula even gets to roar classic lines straight out of Bram Stoker’s novel. Lee looks great as the count and he’s magnificently ruthless in the few treasured scenes he has. But it’s a pity that the filmmakers opted to keep Dracula confined to his claustrophobic quarters at the dilapidated church; he is never scene venturing anywhere else, so one then wonders what was the point of going through all the trouble of setting the story in modern society! The “20th century face lift” worked much better in other horror films of this era like COUNT YORGA, VAMPIRE (1970) and BLACULA(1972). Though there are some moments to be savored with A.D. ’72, this is somewhat of a missed opportunity and arguably the nadir of Hammer’s Dracula series. **1/2 out of ****

  • charlotte-chavez
    charlotte chavez

    The Hammer Dracula series was mostly solid and entertaining, but the last three films were disappointing and three of Hammer’s lesser efforts. Dracula A.D. 1972 has often been considered the worst of the Hammer Dracula films, for me it is one of the weakest along with Satanic Rites but by no means unwatchable.Starting with what’s good, the best assets are Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee. Cushing brings real dignity and class here to a character that ranks with his best, his dialogue is often absolutely terrible but he remarkably delivers it with much conviction and seriousness(without being overly so). Lee has very little screen time and even little dialogue but is a towering presence and the embodiment of evil. The cast generally actually are decent, with the most memorable being Christopher Neame, he overacts at times and does seem to be trying too hard at times to channel Malcolm McDowell in A Clockwork Orange but he is incredibly charismatic, very sinister and is so much fun to watch. There are three good scenes, the genuinely exciting opening coach fight which features one of Dracula’s most memorable demises of the series, Dracula’s resurrection which is one of the series’ most imaginative and the tense and entertaining ending which is one of the series’ better and more plausible ones. The photography is incredibly stylish and the lighting has a lot of vibrancy and atmosphere.However, Dracula A.D. 1972’s biggest problem is that it is very dated(especially in the production values, script and music), a term I try to avoid using but I do feel that it applies here. And this is not just by today’s standards, it was dated back in 1972 as well. The sets are really lacking in atmosphere and are quite tacky and gaudy in colour, a cheaper version of Austin Powers. The very 1970s costumes and hair-styles are pretty much the same. The script is howlingly bad, Cushing has the worst of the dialogue(some of which are endless explanations) but the howlers come from Alucard, and while it provides some unintentional entertainment at first it gets very tiresome soon after. The film even tries to incorporate some Dracula mythos, but does absolutely nothing with it, a decent idea wasted. The soundtrack dates the film terribly, not only does it sound incredibly cheesy but it is always incongruous with what is going on, with tense scenes almost completely ruined by inappropriately ‘groovy’ music.The story has its moments, but does drag badly and was in serious need of more suspense, mystery, excitement and tension. It is especially bad in the party scene, which goes on forever and serves no point to the story at all, instead showing off an exhausting display 1970s fashions and behaviour at its worst, complete with the most unconvincingly played hippies for any film. The direction is often far too languid, the characters are not really all that interesting or engaging(with the most important characters being severely under-utilised, Dracula and Van Helsing’s rivalry is so much more interesting than everything else in this film, why not show more of it?) and while most of the acting from the main players is decent, Caroline Munro is mesmerising to watch but is wasted by being killed off too soon, Stephanie Beacham is sexy but quite vapid and the acting for the hippies is mostly terrible.All in all, not unwatchable but one of the weakest of the Hammer Dracula series and lesser Hammer overall. 5/10 Bethany Cox

  • darta-karklins
    darta karklins

    It had to happen sooner or later. A surprisingly anemic Hammer knew that it had to shake some of the dust off the period-piece horror that was their specialty, and “get with the groove” of the times if they expected to get the kids’ dollars at the box office and their butts in the seats. So, lepers and ghouls, I give you their initial effort to do just that: “DRACULA – A.D. 1972”. And man, it’s a gas, gas, gas!I mean like, DIG that prologue! I am so rusty on my Hammer filmography, that I don’t remember if the opening sequence is from a previous pic or if it was staged especially for this movie. It doesn’t matter, because it’s definitely one of the best choreographed fights that titans of terror Lee and Cushing have had before. Their struggle atop a moving coach ends with a spectacular crash and our favorite Count being spiked with a broken wheel. The mortally wounded Van Helsing lives just long enough to send Ol’ Famous Fangs back to Hell, but unfortunately a mysterious acolyte of the King of Capes is right there to collect Drac’s ring and his remains, and deposit them in a nice desanctified corner of the same church where Van Helsing’s funeral takes place.Fast-forward about a hundred years later, to a “happening” at somebody’s posh digs. Okay, so it looks like outtakes from Russ Meyer’s BEYOND THE VALLEY OF THE DOLLS without the boobalicious babes in that all-girl band, but it’s kinda fun anyway…in a very retro-’70’s kind of way. The gang’s all here being all mod and irreverent and defiant of snotty rich society, while a band called “Stoneground” plays some really bad pseudo-Grateful Dead tunes. The leader of these groovalicious “Merry Prankster”-wannabes is a creepy-looking cat named Johnny (an impossibly young Christopher Neame) who sort of hangs back and surveys the scene coolly, like the young gay son of Riff Raff from THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW. (Wait! Is that redundant? No, that’s right, Riff was actually into incest! Never mind!) He just so happens to be the descendant of the “servant” who reburied the Count way back when.Anyway, to skip over the plodding details, Johnny (whose last name is “Alucard”, BTW – Stop rolling your eyes! You keep doing that and they’ll stay that way! Didn’t your mother tell you that???) persuades his fine, “Frouging” friends to split this tired scene and trade it up for something a little more “wild” – like a Black Mass, to be exact.Now is probably the best time to mention that two of the “birds” in this group just happen to be Jessica Van Helsing, (an even more impossibly young Stephanie Beacham from the Hammer and Amicus Repertory Companies) the granddaughter of present-day vamp-staker Laurence, and the comely Laura (Horror-Queen-In-Training Caroline Munro) who is “up for anything,” (unfortunately for her.) As corny and clichéd as everything is leading up to it, the staging of the ritual does manage to raise a few goosebumps, and of course there’s the Grand Entrance of the Bard of Bloodsucking himself, (even though it doesn’t happen until about a third of the way through the movie.)I’ve read in other reviews about how embarrassed Lee and Cushing looked or must’ve felt doing this picture, and I have to beg to differ. I thought they played their usual parts rather well, and both of them showed why they were much better actors than they were ever given credit for. Cushing could always deliver lines with a straight face that would make other actors want to giggle hysterically, vomit prodigiously, or have an ocean of drinks just to get through filming. But it’s pretty evident here why John Carpenter wouldn’t have minded having either of them in HALLOWEEN, in the role that eventually went to their colleague Donald Pleasence.Well, from here it’s mostly paint-by-numbers stuff. The descendant of Dracula’s servant has revived “The Master”, who plans on taking revenge on the Van Helsing clan by converting one of their own (Jessica) into his latest blushing, biting Bride. Oh, and here’s a couple of new twists in the mix, though: Drac does become an equal-opportunity neck-nibbler in this one, since he does chow down on the nape of the lovely token black member of the hipster hangers-on, and even lunches near the larynx of Johnny A. himself! (And before you even say it, NO, I don’t think the Count went “queer!” If you’re gonna “buy him lunch,” I don’t think he was really particular about where the Type-O treats came from!)If you know your Hammer, you know where this is going. Many characters you could give a crap about will die…and rise undead…and die again, until Van Helsing pops a cap…well, actually a stake…in Drac’s ass and turns him back into the kind of stuff you find in an overstuffed vacuum cleaner bag, until the next sequel.Only this time it’s all done to a rockin’ beat as provided by Michael Vickers, (sorry, I guess James Bernard was busy that week), who scores 1972 appropriately, like a cross between THE MOD SQUAD and THE AVENGERS.So, Dracula A.D. 1972 is not quite vampire porn and not completely bloodsucker corn. But speaking of corn, it will go down easy with a tub of Pop Secret and a 2-liter Coke.Just don’t forget your tie-dyed tee shirt, Lava Lamp and a big ol’ doobie.

  • vicente-leal
    vicente leal

    i have been an avid hammer film fan since i care to remember,and although i feel this film was weak in comparison to those Dracula films that came before,one cant help by liking this,from its outset to its finalie,i also have to say i think that michael vickers theme music,is one of sheer brilliance,christopher lee again teaming with the great Peter Cushing,pull out all the stops to make this a classic,which should be on any hammer fans film shelf.May i also add,that another great performance in the movie,is Christopher Neame,a brilliant actor,so very good film and in some ways quite sad,a reminder to the world of cinema,a hark back to the good old days of British cinema.The follow up movie,THE SATANIC RITES OF Dracula,was to be the last Dracula movie made by hammer studios,both these movies deserve their place among the hammer greats,sad to think looking at these movies,how many of its cast and crew are no longer amongst us,but their work lives on.

  • artur-tavares
    artur tavares

    Hammer had upped the sex and gore in their movies but were still loosing ground to more modern horror. Perhaps missing the point, Hammer decided to update their biggest franchise. Dracula was, as the awesome trailer says, coming to the 1970s to “freak you out.” The film also reunites Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing, Dracula and Van Helsing facing off once more. The tactic didn’t work and the film wasn’t successful. “Dracula 1972 AD” would be the beginning of the end for Hammer’s Dracula series.”Dracula 1972 AD” opens with a flashback. Dracula and Van Helsing fight atop a carriage in 1872… Wait. “Horror of Dracula” was set in 1885! You’re telling me the first movie took place thirteen years after Dracula and Van Helsing’s final fight? If the filmmakers were even paying attention, we can presume this was a continuity reboot. Unless you want me to fanwank an explanation involving identical twins and unseen resurrections… Anyway, 100 years later, a hip Satanist named Johnny Alucard invites his groovy friends to a black mass at an abandoned church. After some Satanic bugaboo, Dracula is resurrected in the swinging seventies. Among Johnny’s friend is Jessica Van Helsing, the current Van Helsing’s granddaughter. Dracula seeks the girl for revenge.After the action packed opening, “Dracula 1972 AD” does a dramatic jump cut. We pan up from the carriage to a jet flying through the sky. As we go on a tour of the hip spots of London, circa 1972, a funk-jazz number plays on the soundtrack. Soon, the film transitions to a party where some awful hippy band plays. The uptight social types are aghast at the presentations while the cool kids joke around with them. If the title, music, and fashion didn’t clue you in, the obvious way the characters act places this in the seventies. The hippy teenagers are constantly at odds with the adults. Isolated scenes seem less like Hammer horror and more like a teen-targeted social drama.What does this have to do with Dracula? Not a lot. The title promises Dracula cutting up among the modern world. That doesn’t happen. Instead, Lee remains confined to the abandoned church for the entire film. Perhaps Dracula realizes he, still rocking the black cape look, wouldn’t fit in. The character’s role is quite small. So the film creates a deliberate segregation between Gothic horror and the modern setting. Johnny Alucard brings victims back to the church, where Dracula feeds on them. The king of the vampires hangs out there while his young disciple goes hunting. On the good side, this dynamic is represented by the police collaborating with occult expert Van Helsing. The weirdest part is that director Alan Gibson nails the classic Hammer look. The grey crypt and billowing fog look awesome. But “Dracula 1972 AD” does not do a good job of mingling Gothic horror with a modern setting. Compare this to the same year’s “Blacula,” which did the same thing more successfully.With Lee used sparingly, the focus shifts to the kids. How much you enjoy “1972” will depend on how much you enjoy the characters. Johnny Alucard’s character arc is identical to Count Courtley from “Taste the Blood of Dracula” except instead of dying, he turns into a vampire. There is a sleazy charm to Alucard stalking women in Soho. The teens are thinly defined. One is a prankster, one is noble, one is black, and then there’s the Other Girl. “Dracula 1972 AD” is fortunate to feature two of the most desirable women to ever appear in a Hammer film. Stephanine Beacham plays Jessica. I wish Beacham had more to do, besides be a screaming victim, as she proves likable. She’s also always on the verge of exploding out of her tight tops. Meanwhile, achingly beautiful Caroline Munro plays Laura, who is, disappointingly, Dracula’s first victim.For the problems “AD” has, the film does have stand-out moments. The Black Mass sequence is the closest the film comes to being scary. The music builds, smoke rises, Alucard shouts demonic names, and the scene climaxes with Caroline Munro getting blood poured over her cleavage. Cushing’s role, though much larger then Lee’s, still has limited screen time. Too much of that is devoted to Cushing giving exposition on vampires, which the audience already knows. Cushing, for his benefit, plays this Van Helsing differently then the classic Van Helsing. He’s older, more vulnerable to physical violence, and more bookish. When he leaps into action, confronting Alucard in his apartment, he gets wounded at first. However, Van Helsing uses his brain to overcome, reflecting sunlight off a mirror until Alucard falls into a working shower. That’s a fun moment. The duel between Lee and Cushing has a tense confrontation in a stairway, makes good use of a silver dagger, and gives Dracula a spectacular death. Dracula tosses Van Helsing outside and goes in for the kill. Suddenly, the hunter tosses holy water into the vampire’s face before dropping him in an improvised punji spike pit. Drac squirms as Van Helsing hits him with a shovel, bloodily pushing him through a stake. As far as Dracula’s death scenes go, it’s up there with the sun-bathed finale in “Horror of Dracula.” And, hey, the entire climax features Stephanie Beachum in a low-cut white dress. Which is nice.Director Alan Gibson has some interesting directorial quirks. He makes good use of close-ups on faces. Something he does repeatedly is place the action in the distance while filling the rest of the frame with negative space. “Dracula 1972 AD” wasn’t a hit but has developed a following over the years. It has a funky energy unique among the series even if it doesn’t make the best use of Lee and could have done a better job updating the Count for the then-modern day.

  • erna-tratnik
    erna tratnik

    In the late 1950s Hammer Films revolutionised horror with the likes of ‘The Curse of Frankenstein’ (1957) and ‘Dracula’ (1958) which, for the time, pushed boundaries in terms of gore (not least through the knowledgeable use of colour film) and eroticism. They were commercial and critical successes that resurrected a dead genre (pun intended) and opened the door for a boom in horror movies equivalent to that in the 1930s.However, cut to the beginning of the 1970s and society itself had gone from Black and White to Technicolour due to the flowering of the counter-culture which saw all social institutions subject to intense criticism or outright attack and in horror we had seen the all-out assault of George A. Romero’s ‘Night of the Living Dead’ (1968). As a result, recognising that quaint Vampire movies from England just don’t get the scares they used to, Hammer tried to change things up. One thing they tried was ditching the subtle but potent eroticism for simply showing more tits and having the women engage in lesbianism. Another, more respectable, thing was to attempt to update the vampire story to make it more relevant to a modern audience. And from this comes ‘Dracula AD 1972’.The plot is basically the same as any other of the Dracula sequels that came in the wake of ‘Dracula’ (1958): the count, dead since his last encounter with Van Helsing is brought back by a dutiful underling and seeks revenge. The film begins with an impressive period piece prologue showing Dracula’s staking a hundred years ago and then, panning up, a plane screeches across the sky announcing the updated setting. The film then cuts to an amusing scene where a group of young hip cats (led by the charismatic and aloof Johnny Alucard) have gate-crashed a party and are “terrorising” the owners in the most limp and middle-class way. Later on they talk of where the next far out thrill will come from when Johnny suggests a black mass. They all attend for kicks but get freaked out when Johnny seems to take it too seriously and wants Jessica (family name Van Helsing) played by Stephanie Beacham, to get involved. She declines but the Prince of Darkness is summoned with the aid of another girl and, awakened to the twentieth century, Dracula is out for revenge.The film has been criticised by many as a failed attempt to desperately breathe life into the franchise, and while that charge can’t be escaped, the conceit of the film to update Dracula is not a bad one. If anything, the failing of the film is that it didn’t go far enough in its updating and still feels like the reserved period pieces which came before just in funky threads and platforms. What’s more, director Alan Gibson (who would direct the next attempt to update Dracula with the much worse ‘The Satanic Rites of Dracula’) is no Terence Fisher and lacks the directorial subtleties which distinguish the earlier features. Still, Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee are sheer class, as always, and raise the film up a notch or two.All told, it’s a decent attempt, with some good moments, and manages to be fun ride. However, considering that ‘The Exorcist’ was around the corner, it’s no surprise poor old Dracula couldn’t cut it. Which is sad.

  • valentina-kaulins
    valentina kaulins

    I purchased this movie by itself and then later got a second copy as part of a 4 movie compilation. Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee are a great duo and any Dracula movie they star in together is worth seeing/owning if you are a fan of the genre. This movie is very entrenched in the 70’s. You have to take that into consideration when watching the movie and not look at it as dated, but try to imagine you are in that period if you want to truly enjoy it. It’s not the best Dracula movie, for me a bit to little of Dracula himself. He is killed off much too quickly. I also prefer Dracula movies that take place in an earlier period, not such a modern age. Even still this movie holds it’s own and I think is very enjoyable for a Saturday afternoon when you may have little to do and just want to enjoy classic stars.

  • ingrid-kristensen-eriksen
    ingrid kristensen eriksen

    Make no mistake, Dracula AD1972 is a work of genius. OK, the Hammer purists – of which I myself used to be one – don’t like it, and compared to, say, Horror of Dracula it is all rather silly. But the bottom line is that it’s one of the most enjoyable horror films ever made. It’s just so much fun!.The dialogue is brilliant (“Yeah, tell us about the blood, Johnny,”; “Murder, Jessica – ghastly, horrible, obscene murder!”). It has Cushing and Lee together, for the penultimate time (the last, ‘The Satanic Rites of Dracula’, is dross). The prologue is really atmospheric and authentic. The modern day stuff, while certainly cheesy, is actually very funny in places (all the bits at the party with the Stoneground, for example), and the scenes in and around St Botolphs are really quite creepy. Oh yeah, and the soundtrack rocks!I really like Michael Coles’ Inspector Murray, and Christopher Neame’s Johnny Alucard is one of the best performances in a Hammer film ever (although his death scene is a bit pants). And of course, it goes without saying that Caroline Munro is utterly gorgeous.AD72 is flawed, no doubt. There are big holes in the plot, some resulting from savage last-minute editing (eg of the scene where Jessica’s boyfriend gets offed, which was cut late on, leaving him lying inexplicably dead in the graveyard), and surely Lawrence Van Helsing is Jessica’s great-great-grandfather, not, as she says when she sees his gravestone, her great-grandfather? But the real reason this film is such a splendid entry in Hammer’s Dracula canon is presence of the gentleman of horror, dear old Peter Cushing. Don’t you just wish you had a grandfather like Lorrimer Van Helsing?! Cushing never sinks into parodying or ridiculing the material, as, say, Vincent Price would have done. He plays it straight, and gives it a dignity it would certainly otherwise have lacked. I know Christopher Lee thought it was a bad idea bringing Dracula into the modern day, but he still banked the cheque, didn’t he?Requiescat in pace ultima!!!

  • isaac-da-valente
    isaac da valente

    Alright, putting Dracula in a 70s setting is a silly idea, particularly to Stoker purists (Christopher Lee included).However, this is an outrageously entertaining movie. Unlike every other Hammer Dracula, except for the first, this one zips along; these movies are notorious for their snail-like pace.It helps that the film is visually beautiful, especially when compared to the low-budget Scars of Dracula and the badly photographed Satanic Rites. The return of Peter Cushing in itself takes the film to a higher level than the previous sequels, thanks to his inimitably credible style of acting. And I, for one, love the overblown 70’s soundtrack.Christopher Lee is quick to disown this movie, but he felt that way about all the sequels, some of which are much more highly regarded than this one. In this film he returns to that animal-like nature that makes his Dracula stand out, unlike the more muted performances in Scars and Taste The Blood of Dracula. His screen time is limited, but more effective than any of the sequels.This is not a great vampire or horror movie, but it’s a great popcorn flick and just fun to watch during an evening at home.

  • bogdan-timchuk
    bogdan timchuk

    For the sixth film in the hugely popular Dracula series, Hammer have opted to keep the story seen in the other five films relatively similar to usual – i.e. Dracula gets resurrected, goes on the rampage and then gets defeated again, but this time the action has been moved away from the staple Gothic settings of the earlier films and into a more contemporary setting – namely, swinging 70’s London! The problem with Hammer’s Dracula series is that they’re all a bit similar, so this new setting has injected some much needed new blood into the series, and while this effort is patchy and more than a little messy – on the whole I rate this as one of the best of the series and a huge treat for Hammer fans! This entry in the series is also notable for the fact that the two main stars of the original are together again in a Dracula film for the first time since then. Seeing Christopher Lee as Dracula is always a treat, but it’s even more so when you’ve got Peter Cushing as Van Helsing in the same movie! As the story has been brought forward a few centuries, Cushing now stars as a descendant of his original character while Lee still takes up the role of the immortal count. Both of these great actors do their usual thing, and it’s great to see two men enjoying their craft. As usual, Lee doesn’t get all that much screen time; but every moment he’s on screen is excellent, and many of the Dracula scenes in this movie are among the best of the series. Keeping in with their usual thing, the majority of the cast is made up of unknowns; but this time there’s a big stand out – Christopher Neame in the role of Dracula’s disciple; Johnny Alucard (Dracula spelt backwards!). Neame is gloriously over the top and his performance is another delight in this already delightful movie. The ending is a little bit disappointing, as it’s all over so quickly but it hardly matters by the end as for the last ninety minutes you’ve been watching one of the most camp and outrageous horror films that Hammer ever produced. Don’t listen to the negative vibes surrounding this movie – if you’re a Hammer fan, you’ll be right at home.

  • victor-andersson
    victor andersson

    Although it feels a bit thrown together, with its day as night shots, total lack of continuity and dreadful soundtrack, this film succeeds as a comic masterpiece. It’s difficult to describe the amount of pleasure that can be gained through Christopher Neame’s outrageous performance as Johnny Alucard (Van Helsing’s solving of the anagram is one of many magnificent unintentionally comic moments, worthy of Tom Baker at his most insincere).Both Cushing and Lee try desperately to bring a sense of gravitas to the lunatic proceedings (how do vampires survive when it’s raining?), but it does become apparent that the series was reaching its natural conclusion.I’ve laughed so much it’s been impossible to stand up during this. Memorable quotes include: “Dig the music, kids”, “Foul, ghastly, horrible, obscene murder” and “A black mass? I mean, honestly.” And while we’re on it the black mass itself is absolutely wonderful.How did they ever think this wouldn’t date? By 75 it was hysterical.Rush and see it, you’ll be mightily rewarded.

  • nikonova-ekaterina-arkhipovna
    nikonova ekaterina arkhipovna

    An attempt to corner a new market by Hammer. Starts promisingly with references to London and a generation clash as the central characters disrupt a cheese and wine evening . Looked on by their horrified elders they cause mayhem with their new music and wacky clothing which now look all dated and laughable. The resurrection of Dracula is th most impressive part of the film and has been reused regularly in stills footage. The modern settings leave scriptwriters uncertain where to progress next and a desperate Van Helsing searching for his niece is wasted in poor lighting & lack of dialogue. Take the opportunity to enjoy 70s interior decor throughout much of the film. The finale is worth watching alone. Colour’s a bit garish but seeing Cushing recite a piece of melancholic Latin is a pleasure we never saw enough of. Watch beginning and end, don’t bother with the middle & start your own satanic cult from the black mass scenes. Sects have done that.

  • tara-cruz
    tara cruz

    An interesting entry into the series, but really, I feel there was still life in the 19th Century time frame. Bringing Dracula to the 70s was, I think a mistake. Christopher Lee seems to be mostly forgotten and never gets the opportunity to get out and do what he does best. He remains in an old disused church for the whole film and only has a few decent scenes. We have Peter Cushing here, of course, playing an excellent part as Van Helsing, which somewhat saves the film. Decent portrayals by Lee, Cushing, Beacham, Munroe and Neame are worth watching. The 2 best things about this movie are , 1, the opening. Hyde Park, and Dracula and Van Helsing and racing through on a horse drawn carriage battling it out. The carriage crashes and they are both thrown. Van Helsing recieving fatal wounds and Dracula impaled on a broken wheel. Pretty good stuff, although not enough lighting was used so the carriage top battle and following events are rather hard to see. 2, the finale. As Van Helsing plans to destroy Dracula he drives a silver bladed knife through the Count’s heart, only to be removed by his Granddaughter Jessica. Van Helsing then lures Dracula out to his death. The first few moments between Lee and Cushing in this final battle are classic, and for the first time in the series history, the 2 main characters speak to each other. The film is worth a look, if you`re a fan of modern horror then Lee and Cushing will seem a little lost, but if you`re a fan of the old Hammer Dracula films, take a look, with the beginning and the end, you just might like it.

  • larry-simmons
    larry simmons

    England’s Hammer Studios did 9 Dracula or vampire films from 1958-1974:1. Horror of Dracula (1958); 2. Brides of Dracula (1960); 3. Dracula, Prince of Darkness (1966); 4. Dracula has Risen from the Grave (1968); 5. Taste the Blood of Dracula (1970); 6. Scars of Dracula (1970); 7. Dracula A.D. 1972 (1972); 8. The Satanic Rites of Dracula (1973); and 9. The Legend of the 7 Golden Vampires (1974).Christopher Lee plays the Count in all but “The Brides of Dracula” and “The Legend 7 Golden Vampires.” Peter Cushing also stars in four entries as Van Helsing.By the time of the seventh film the creative well was apparently running dry and Hammer decided to spice up the series by bringing the Count to present-day London (1972, of course), which was Hammer’s response to other successful vampire films at the time taking place in the modern day, such as “The Night Stalker,” “Blacula” and “Count Yorga.” The story revolves around a group of hip counter-culture youths performing a black mass in an abandoned church for kicks (although the ringleader takes it serious) and they revive the blood-sucking prince of darkness. Havok ensues.Peter Cushing appears as Van Helsing’s descendant. Christopher Neame plays the nutjob who performs the black mass with utter relish. Also on hand are the stunning beauties Stephanie Beacham and Caroline Munro. Stephanie plays Van Helsing’s daughter and Caroline has a small but significant role. There are a couple of other early-70s hippie babes as well.The first half of the film borrows heavily from the previous “Taste the Blood of Dracula” in that the Count is resurrected in roughly the same manner, although “Taste” is more effective. Which isn’t to say that “Dracula A.D. 1972” isn’t a decent entry in the series, albeit bizarre. The main problem with the film is that the story doesn’t seem to know what to do once Dracula is resurrected. For instance, Cushing’s final battle with the Count is fairly lame for various reasons (I don’t want to give anything away), not to mention Lee only appears for about 10 minute in the entire film, which is usual for the series, of course.Another problem is the score. It screams “early 70s” in a bad way, but doesn’t mesh with what is essentially a serious horror flick. Of course some would cite that as part of its charm. I said “serious horror flick, by the way, because this is not a goofy or campy flick despite the colorful hippie elements and lousy score.What works best is that it’s a great period piece. You’ll get a groovy glimpse of England’s counter-culture, including the hippie girls and a live performance by the band Stoneground (who didn’t go anywhere beyond this movie, likely because their sound & style was already passe by 1972). So, the first half is fun and compelling, whereas the second half just sort of goes through the motions and peters out.BOTTOM LINE: “Dracula A.D. 1972” is hard to rate because, despite the mediocre-ness of the story’s second half, the film is a fun experience with numerous highlights. Hence, as a Dracula story I give it a C+, but for entertainment value I give it a solid B or B+.The film runs 96 minutes and was shot in England.GRADE: B-

  • gayane-abamelik-yan
    gayane abamelik yan

    By the 1970s, Hammer Studios were losing momentum in the marketplace. Their cheaply made fantasy horror flicks began to pale in relevance against a rising tide of more visceral and intellectually challenging movies from America. By the time of The Exorcist in 1973, they were just about done, their particular oeuvre looking somewhat outdated, un-dynamic and retrogressive by comparison.That said, when it comes to entertainment value channelled through a filter of undiluted eccentricity, an absolute unselfconscious lack of internal self-awareness and an uncanny knack of creating hysterically unintentional hilarity, Dracula AD 1972 and its ilk are going to trample all over any Exorcist or Texas Chainsaw Massacre any day of the week. In its own culturally clueless way, it is a pop art classic that in retrospect has improved in stature over the years, to the point where it almost transcends criticism by virtue of the fact that criticism can’t really touch it. Reasoned critique has no place here because it would have no meaningful effect.What makes it so great? Where do I start? Lee and Cushing – They act and behave on screen as though they are appearing in something by Shakespeare. The utter conviction and quality of these two performers bypasses the script, the dialogue, the direction, everything, and expresses nothing but consistent professionalism and commitment. Lesser performers might have let a degree of realisation and insight diminish the standard of their input down to the level of the material which clearly enshrines them. Not these two. They play it straight and true throughout. That’s class that is. And it pays off.Christopher Neame – an actor in his thirties pretending to be the teenage leader of a teenage gang (sorry “group. We’re just a group of friends.”). The hip young guns, it must be said, are also a bit long in the fang with teen years little more than a distant memory, one would imagine. Neame acts like he’s in some sort of demented Gothic pantomime without a director, giving one of the most over-the-top and eye-poppingly histrionic performances ever seen in a movie of this type. Vincent Price would have been compelled to relinquish his crown of ham in an instant to this guy, knighting him Sir Hammy McHamster of Hambone in the parish of Hampshire on the spot. The sequence wherein Cushing offs him in the shower, and the process leading up to it, is a slice of pure cinematic genius and simply has to be experienced to be…well, experienced.The Score – By ex-Manfred Mann member, Mike Vickers, is an absolute treat. Supplemented by tracks from stereotypical multi-racial hippie combo Stoneground and electronics pioneer David Vorhaus, it’s a fascinating combination of cheesy jazzed-up early seventies TV serial music and Philip Martell influences. What’s not to like? Caroline Munro and Stephanie Beacham – I mean, if you want a heaving cleavage and Max-Factor fake blood combination, these chicks are up for it. There are no better. Trust one who knows. They don’t need to show what they’ve got in order to show what they’ve got. Know what I mean.The Dialogue – So many gold-plated howlers:”Dig the music, kids!” “Is this your place, Johnny?” “Come in for a bite.””Don’t look now, but Charley baby’s gonna call the fuzz.””Weird, man. Way out. I mean, spooks, hobgoblins, black magic. All that sort of stuff.” “But if we do get to summon up the big daddy with the horns and the tail, he gets to bring his own liquor, his own bird and his own pot.” And so many more. You couldn’t make it up. But, astonishingly, someone did! Okay, so if none of that makes you want to see it and fall on your knees in worship at the altar of its’ very special merits, there are other plus points. The opening confrontation between Van Helsing and Dracula, ending with the latter impaled on a broken carriage-wheel and the former breathing his last, is an immediate blast from the off. The nostalgic early seventies London atmosphere the film manages to generate is eerily unique – it instills a sensation of having been there even if you hadn’t been. The final confrontation, between the ageing modern day descendant of Van Helsing and the time-compromised Count, results in genuine feelings of both pathos and exhilaration. And, all in all, it’s a pacey little number that slows only momentarily. There’s always something to keep you engaged – even if it induces a shaking of the head or dropping of the jaw in sheer awestruck disbelief.In the end, it’s a feel-good movie that didn’t intend to be from a time when the term “feel-good movie” didn’t exist. Put on a SAW or Hostel DVD and think about how good you feel after it. Then put on Dracula AD 1972 and think about the same thing.The ultimate unintentional feel-good horror movie. No lie.

  • flavio-rizzo
    flavio rizzo

    Modern horror movies love to place classic horror icons and characters in modern times and people love to hate modern horror movies for that! However, it really isn’t something that’s new, as this 1972 movie clearly demonstrates. It take the classic Hammer Dracula character and puts him into a ‘modern’ 1972 setting, no doubt also in an attempt to modernize and update the Dracula series, hoping this would boost the franchise again. It didn’t really worked out though, since its one of the final Dracula movies from the Hammer studios but in all truth and honesty; I still quite liked it! Lets face it, all of the older Dracula movies set in more classic settings were starting to get extremely repetitive. All of the movies were being more or less the same, with very little variety to them. And while in essence this movie is also really being the same as any other classic Dracula movie story-wise, it still manages to feel like a breath of fresh air, due to its difference in style and settings.It definitely feels like a more modern movie, though of course in today’s light, it still is a very outdated movie. It’s really a product of its time, with some funky ’70’s clothing, music and type of characters. You could complain about it that this movie doesn’t have enough vampire action in it, since this is definitely true but in all honesty, the same can be said for a lot of Dracula movies, also those from the Hammer studios. Blame Christopher Lee for that, since he was the one who was done with the character pretty early on already but agreed to still appear in Dracula movies as the count, probably just because it was quick, good money for him. But he always made sure his role was being as limited as possible and also his dialog always needed to be cut down to a minimum. But how can you be mad at Christopher Lee for that? after all, he’s still an awesome and very charismatic Dracula, in every movie in which he plays the character.Also good news about this movie is that Peter Cushing returns in it, as professor Van Helsing. Or well, a decedent of him of course. It had been 12 years and 5 Dracula movies ago he starred opposite Christopher Lee. And he was truly missed in the 4 Dracula movies which that he didn’t appeared in. Not just because he was a great actor but also really since he has just as much screen-presence and charisma as Lee and was capable of counterbalancing him. All of the Dracula movies without him basically lack a good and strong enough lead, that besides was being a memorable and likable enough character.You could argue about it if it truly adds something that this movie got set in 1972, since Dracula himself doesn’t even ever get outside I believe but it does bring some originality and more creativity to the series, while still maintaining a good and typical Hammer studios horror style to it.7/10 http://bobafett1138.blogspot.com/

  • gavrilova-fiokla-stanislavovna
    gavrilova fiokla stanislavovna

    This attempt by Hammer to keep their Dracula franchise going is amusing, to say the least: they bring him hissing and biting into the 20th century, as a modern day disciple of the count resurrects him. Dracula then becomes a man on a mission, determined to get his revenge on the current generation(s) of Van Helsings. Once again played by Sir Christopher Lee, Drac sets his sights on Jessica (Stephanie Beacham), the comely granddaughter of an occult expert, played with his usual sophistication and sincerity by Peter Cushing.The potential to see an old fashioned sort of character way out of his element in the swinging London of the early 1970s is wasted, as Dracula never leaves an abandoned church (not on screen, anyway). A little of Drac does go a long way, even though fans of Sir Christopher might wish he were given a little more to do. The focus of this sequel is on the other characters, and there’s so much talk / exposition going on that it robs the film of some effectiveness; there’s just not that much horror. (There is, of course, the requisite neck biting, and a rather bloody occult ceremony that is the highlight of the film.) The disco style music is priceless at times, giving the proceedings a very humorous quality.Cushing, not surprisingly, makes all the difference with his performance. He could say just about anything and you’d buy into it. Still, the supporting cast is good, especially Christopher Neame as the intense Johnny Alucard (*that’s* a pretty clumsy clue), Michael Coles as the naturally skeptical police inspector, Marsha A. Hunt as Gaynor, and luscious Caroline Munro as Laura, a regrettably minor part.Director Alan Gibson is no Terence Fisher, but he does an acceptable job in what is mostly an average shocker for its time, mostly worth recommending to devotees of the cast and genre. It does manage to deliver a solidly entertaining finale.Six out of 10.

  • lidia-prieto-macias
    lidia prieto macias

    Considering that this is generally regarded as the worst of the Hammer “Dracula” films and one of the worst Hammer horror films, my hopes were not high. However, I bloody loved it. Yes, it may not be the cleverest or the deepest of the films and parts of it – most of the “modern” dialogue and Alucard’s death scene particularly – are rather cringeworthy but it’s outrageous fun! Other parts – such as the resurrection scene and the line “By the 6,000 terrors of Hell, I baptise thee!” – are just so wonderfully silly and bizarre that I couldn’t help but love it. It’s just so much fun. Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing are as excellent as ever and the film has a very strong supporting cast overall. I criticised “Scars of Dracula” for being basically a hodge-podge of the best bits from the first five films. I think that Hammer might have realised that they’d tapped out the Gothic elements as regards the Dracula films and the series needed a change of pace by moving it into the present day. I wonder if that decision was inspired by “Escape from the Planet of the Apes” doing the same for its film series the previous year.

  • reinis-skujins
    reinis skujins

    I love this film. It is a wonderful Hammer vampire story put in the seventies, with swinging girls and guys, the hippie culture(of sorts), and ancient old nemesises Dracula and Van Helsing. The opening is one of the best in the Hammer tradition as we see Dracula and Van Helsing battling in the 1800’s on a carraige. Now, do not get me wrong. The film is dated very much, and it is somewhat implausible. But Peter Cushing is in top form and his performance as the descendant of Van Helsing is worth seeing the film alone. Add some very pretty(and busty) Hammer beauties like Caroline Munro and Stephanie Beacham…and Christopher Lee as the antogonist and it’s a can’t-miss.

  • donald-simmons
    donald simmons

    One thing in life that I always enjoyed in my childhood was me and my mom watching the old Hammer Dracula films, they were always a blast to watch how Dracula would get himself back out of the coffin once again for the next sequel. I was able to find a DVD set with 4 Hammer Dracula movies which included one that I hadn’t seen: Dracula AD 1972. I didn’t even hesitate to buy the DVD and watch Dracula AD 1972 first thing when I got home. I know that these movies are technically bad and very silly, but still I enjoy watching them, Christopher Lee as Dracula in the 70’s, you can’t go wrong. Although I thought it would have been funnier if he went out into the city to see how people would react to him dressed in that same outfit, just watch the movie Love At First Bite, that’s a great example of Dracula existing in a modern world and is absolutely hilarious. I think this movie was mainly made though because of the small success that was Count Yorga, another 1970’s vampire movie that is pretty good, they wanted to ride the same roller coaster and see where they could take Dracula next.In1872, Count Dracula and his enemy Lawrence Van Helsing battle on the top of a runaway coach. It crashes and Dracula is impaled by one of the wheels. Van Helsing dies from his wounds. One hundred years later, we are introduced to a group of young hippies that includes Jessica Van Helsing, granddaughter of Van Helsing, a descendant of Dracula’s old nemesis and an expert on the occult, and Johnny Alucard, who is a disciple of Dracula. Alucard persuades Jessica and the others to attend a black magic ceremony in the now abandoned, desecrated St Bartolph’s, where he performs a bloody ritual involving one of their group, Laura. Jessica and the others flee in horror, after which Dracula is resurrected and kills Laura. Laura’s body is discovered, drained of blood, and a police investigation begins, headed by an Inspector Murray. Van Helsing, who is shocked to learn the details of Laura’s death. Alucard is turned into a vampire. The vampire Alucard lures Jessica’s boyfriend, Bob, and he turns him into a vampire as well. While Lorrimer is out, Bob goes to the Van Helsing house and persuades Jessica to come to the café, where he and Alucard capture her and take her to Dracula, dun dun dun! Dracula in the 70’s man, how groovy.Dracula AD 1972 isn’t a bad movie, it did make me laugh quite a few times, to think that this is what my parents were like in the 1970’s is just disturbing, lol. But the script was such a blast to be displayed on the screen. You got very pretty actors including the gorgeous Caroline Munro, who is very under rated and Christopher Neame who I swear is Malcolm McDoweell’s under appreciated brother because all those looks that Chris gave to the camera I think was inspired by A Clockwork Orange. Over all if you are into the old Hammer Dracula films, this is definitely worth the look. Even if you’re not, I think this is a fun little time capsule to see how scary the 1970’s were in the fashion world and how they spoke, what was so “groovy, man”. Sock it to me, Dracky, baby! I had a good time watching Dracula AD 1972.7/10

  • vineta-baltins
    vineta baltins

    I have recently managed to finally secure this film on DVD after a long wait and am delighted to have been able to do so. A much maligned later addition to the Hammer Dracula saga, this was a magnificent attempt by Hammer to propel new life into the oft told story of the Count and his many appearances over passing years. It was logic that he would eventually end up in modern time and to this end on the budget available to Hammer at the time, this was without doubt a superb entry into the series. Despite being set in the early 1970’s, Hammer made us well aware of the Gothic element still, by utilising an abandoned Churchyard for may scenes and also include an interesting opener at the beginning of the film, set in Victorian times to allow the old and new to join comfortably. Both Lee and Cushing gave sterling performances as Dracula and Van Helsing respectively and the soundtrack although updated is great to, very reminiscent of the period with the correct touch of the creepies also. The supporting cast is also very good and each has enough time to develop filling out the plot, particularly that of Christopher Neame, who plays Draculs disciple in a role that was sadly unable to develop further as Neame showed distinct and early signs of contesting the masters crown although one thinks perhaps that is why ultimately he was cut short! One of the best and for all of the critics out there, ask yourself when condemning films such as this on the basis that we saw Hammer go downhill etc form here out, what indeed we are left with today instead. On that basis this deserves post award ceremonies by the dozen. Long live the studio from Bray!

  • marina-pantziou
    marina pantziou

    Been reading the other comments of this film For some reason over the years various film critics and horror film book authors have been unjustly mean to this film. I mean you have Peter and Christopher together which is always a good start. A couple of smashing birds ( note the 70’s lingo ) in Stephanie Beacham and Marsha Hunt and an absolute corker in the very sexy Caroline Munro ( who of course also advertised Lamb’s Navy Rum , did a Bond Movie and perhaps the pinnacle of her career appeared as one of the hostesses with Ted Rogers and Dusty Bin on 3 2 1 ) I love the music too all very 70’s. Christopher Neame’s death scene was superb as was the final fight between Pete and Chris ( with that crazy 70’s music once again ) is very well staged. Although Mr. Cushing looks as he’s going to collapse going up and down those spiral steps.The hilarious 70’s costumes on the blokes look like they might have once belonged to Richard O’Sullivan in Man About the House. One chap spends the whole film dressed as some kind of ‘kinky’ monk.The crazy 70’s lingo is very funny and the group at the beginning at the party ‘Stoneground ‘ well I’m just lost for words.All in all I think this film is an absolute corker. If you haven’t seen ignore the negative comments sit down and enjoy it.I think it’s a corker.

  • barbara-bogovic
    barbara bogovic

    I don’t understand why people constantly put-down this movie (and its sequel Satanic Rites Of Dracula) They’re both great fun and much more enjoyable than the stodgy Taste The Blood Of Dracula (in fact Satanic in my opinion is the best of the whole Hammer Dracula cycle in my opinion!)I’ve noticed lots of people pointing to the 7O’s factor as feeling very dated- (well, what else were people supposed to be playing in 1972- 90’s techno music?) I quite enjoyed Stoneground’s little performance and to knock the soundtrack by Michael Vickers is unfair as it is constantly enjoyable and funky to listen to. Add the ever-reliable Peter Cushing and a Christopher Lee who DOESN’T look like he’s going through the motions (even if he had doubts about doing the movie) and a well-off-the-wall- but enjoyable nevertheless performance by Christopher Neame as Johnny Alucard and you get a lovely slice of 70’s horror nostalgia! And I’m sorry anybody with a spirit of fun about them has got to love a movie with lines like “Tell us about the blood, Johnny!” By the way I noticed a previous reviewer was confused by the beginning of the movie and whether Christopher Neame was a descendant of the character in the 1880 prologue- well of course he was! I thought that was made clear…. (by the way, interesting note of trivia, Mr Neame claims that when he was bit by Christopher Lee in the movie he did indeed become a full-fledged initiated vampire- he even lists it on his CV as a proud fact! See the Flesh and Blood Hammer Documentary for the full story…..)

  • bayan-alize-aynimah-arsoy
    bayan alize aynimah arsoy

    In 1872, Dracula was finally put to rest by Professor Van Helsing. One hundred years later, a group of young people thinks it might be good for a few laughs to perform a Black Mass. Unknown to them, a member of their group is a decedent of one of Dracula’s disciples who has been waiting for this opportunity to bring Dracula back from the dead. Alive in modern day London, Dracula now seeks revenge against the Van Helsing family and plans to get that revenge by making Jessica Van Helsing one of his kind.Take a look around the internet and you’ll notice that on almost every list of favorite Hammer vampire films, Dracula A.D. 1972 is at or near the bottom. I don’t get it. I actually had a bit of fun with this one. The scenes of the Black Mass were sufficiently creepy, much of the hip 70s music and vibe were infectious, Stephanie Beacham made a great heroine as Jessica Van Helsing, Christopher Neame was perfectly cast as Dracula’s disciple Johnny Alucard, and the final showdown between Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing is one of the better match-ups they had in these roles. I enjoyed it so much that I have no problem placing Dracula A.D. 1972 among my three favorite of Hammer’s Dracula films.It just goes to prove that while recommendations on the internet can be useful, taking a chance on a movie with a less than stellar reputation can sometimes payoff.

  • jessica-johnston
    jessica johnston

    Where to begin?? Well, going against the grain, I actually enjoy this film a great deal and have watched it several times. Not because it’s a great film by any means, but just because there is something hugely enjoyable about it. It starts off well with the closing sequence of a film that was never made but which could, at a stretch, be perceived as related to ‘Taste the Blood of Dracula’. The Count and Van Helsing are caught in a death struggle atop a horse drawn coach hurtling through Hyde Park. We know that the Count ended up in England during Taste the Blood so it seems fitting that he has somehow been revived, headed for London, and come to the attention of his arch nemesis Van Helsing. Indeed, I would have liked to have seen the movie that I imagine this sequence to have come from. A disciple of the Count gathers up some of his remains and artifacts, proceeding to bury them just outside the walls of the graveyard where Van Helsing has just been interred. Their fate is sealed; somehow they will meet again!!!OK, so it’s pretty much down hill from there, but it’s not an irreversible slope; there are still some decent moments to come. I find it quite interesting that Dracula remains in the old church, caught in a kind of time warp, almost oblivious to the strange new world outside. Also caught in a time warp are the group of young people on whom the majority of the story focuses; they seem already anachronistic in 1972, some of their references seeming around ten years out of date. Nonetheless they serve their purpose, which is slightly more evident in the recent DVD release that includes several scenes missing from other versions.As usual the finished product differs from the original outline. For example there were plans to reveal that Dracula is, in fact, the Devil. An unfilmed piece of dialogue involved Dracula explaining his status to Johnny Alucard; ‘I was always here… Always… since the dawn of time. Since the rebel angels descended into hell. Since darkness followed light… I am Dracula, Lord of Darkness, Master of the Walking Dead! I am the Curse, the Apollyon, Angel of the Destroying Furies! I am the Apocalypse!’. Interesting because this film is often decried in comparison to those being produced in America within the next couple of years, most notably ‘The Exorcist’. Yet here were Hammer thinking of bringing Old Nick into the mix in 1972! Such lines were apparently dropped at Christopher Lee’s insistence due to the extent to which they removed the character from Stoker’s original concept, but aspects of this speech, or at least certain implications, are evident in the concluding stages of ‘The Satanic Rites of Dracula’. The vampire had been pretty successfully integrated into modern times by American film makers, the most notable examples being ‘Count Yorga, Vampire’, the excellent 1972 TV movie ‘The Night Stalker’ (pilot for the old TV show) and a couple of years later the much maligned, but actually pretty good, ‘Blacula’. But unlike these films, Hammer were agents of change in a different way; moving from Victorian Gothic romances to which movie goers had become accustomed over the past 14 years to an environment in which the loss of the Gothic could result in the loss of the audience, consequently the ruined and neglected St. Bartolph’s church successfully represents the death of the old and its imminent demolition suggests that there’s no going back, which, indeed, for Hammer, there really was not.There is much to enjoy in this film; Lee and Cushing are, of course excellent, and some of the supporting players acquit themselves well. But now, I guess, one of its most appealing features is the sense of nostalgia it induces… it just seems like simple, harmless fun now.