movie coverI'd rather be watching TV![IMDB link] [Netflix link] A vampire movie in HD? Okay.

LIMERICK REVIEW: There once was an actor playing a vampire,
whose unorthodox methods were to admire.
But when he tasted blood,
He felt his hunger flood–
Causing some cast members to expire.

HAIKU REVIEW: Making vampire films
can become complicated
with real vampire stars.

PEOPLE: John Makovitch as Marnau. William Dafoe as Shreck — his creepiness in this movie is why he was selected to be The Green Goblin in the Spider-Man movies. Catherine McCormack (Braveheart, 28 Weeks Later) as Greta — Dafoe’s “personal heroin”. And yes, I mean heroin and not heroine. :)

QUIRKS: A movie about making a movie. THE vampire movie, Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens, the “first” horror movie, from the silent film days of Germany, based on Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” book (1897). All the characters in the movie are based off of real-life directors and actors.

It is based in part on the myth that Max Schreck was a real vampire when he played the role of Orlock/Dracula so well. Of course, the reality of the situation is that Max Schreck was already a theatre and movie veteran when Nosferatu was shot, and appeared in many non-Vampire roles before dying in 1936.

I also wonder if “Shrek” was named after Max Schreck. If so, I gained a subtle cultural insight. Nothing is unique; everything is based on something else. If not, well — that’s quite a coincidence.

VISUALS: No real visuals, other than William Dafoe’s incredible makeup and creepy faces. He was pretty much the creepiest Dracula ever. Most vampire movies are obviously fantasy, but this movie was shot to be in reality. And not a horror movie reality like Fright Night, but the real reality we live in. It’s a movie about filmmakers making a real movie that was made in life. This framework makes creepy Dracula that much creepier. People keep thinking he’s just an actor in the movie, but he’s really a vampire.

MORALS: Snuff films are bad? If you find a real vampire in real life, you should probably just kill it…

BAD STUFF: This movie is a subtle, slow-moving drama of sorts. It’s not epic fantasy excitement like, say, Bram Stoker’s Dracula, or even Interview With A Vampire. It’s quite possibly the most subtle vampire movie I’ve ever watched. It’s a bit easier to fall asleep during than most. This doesn’t mean the movie’s bad; just be prepared for a different pacing algorithm than most films have.

CONCLUSION: 3/5 stars on Netflix, 7/10 on IMDB.

RECOMMENDATION: If you want a vampire movie that’s more on the creepy side, less on the fantasy side, and taking place in the infancy of film (the 1920s): You’ve found it. This is it.

SIMILAR MOVIES: Most vampire movies are NOT similar to this. But what I did find that was interesting — is that the original Nosferatu movie has been re-scored by gothic metal band Type O Negative! You can get it on Amazon.com here. I’m totally putting this on my wishlist. There’s no way in hell I’d ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever watch a silent black & white film — but Type O Negative scoring it totally changes that.

MOVIE QUOTE: F.W. Murnau: Ladies and gentlemen, this is Max Schreck, who will be portraying our vampire, Count Orlock. As you no doubt have heard, Max’s methods are somewhat… unconventional, but… I am sure you will come to respect his artistry in this matter.
(and later)
F.W. Murnau: If it’s not in frame, it doesn’t exist!

FRIENDS’ RATINGS: Christian D loved it. Parthena, Christie R, Eric M, Glen, and Benj really liked it. Ian liked it.

Mood: recovering from juror’s germs
Music: Kreator – Material World Paranoia