Tuesday, January 28, 2014
Dracula 3D (2012)
"Dario ... Dario ... Dario ..."
Dracula 3D is Dario Argento's take on Bram Stoker's novel. Harker (Unax Ugalde) is on a business trip to work for Dracula (Thomas Kretschmann; Blade II, King Kong). Harker meets Dracula's previous victim and now servant, Tanja (Miriam Giovanelli); and is attacked and bitten. Mina (Marta Gastini, The Rite) arrives in the village and is meet by her old friend Lucy (Asia Argento; xXx, Demons 2).
Dracula seduces Lucy and has her persuade Mina to go to Dracula's castle to find her husband. Once there, Mina cannot figure out where she knows Dracula. When Van Helsing (Rutger Hauer; The Hitcher, The Rite) is called in; Mina may not make it out alive.
I cannot personally decide if I like or loathe this movie. Argento's newer films are not as good as his older films. The film has horrible CGI effects, green screen backdrops, acting, continuity, and atrocious camera work. There are CGI animals and effects which look like they were made with computer equipment from the early 1990's; especially the opening title sequence. Most of the actors in the film do not speak English as a first language; and this film was shot in English. You can tell a good portion of the film is dubbed.
Camera work was pretty bad. Shots will linger on for far too longer than they should. Angles are pretty bizarre too. There's a scene in a church, where the angle is to a point where you can't even see both actors' faces. Who seriously thought this was a good idea? I give the film a 2.5/5.
Shot digitally with stereoscopic 3D equipment; Dracula 3D sports a very nice and strong video presentation. We have the film in it's original 2.35:1 aspect ratio and in 1080p. Sony Pictures Italy gives this film the video quality that it deserves. While I can only view the film in 2D, color and saturation and grain looks strong. Look at how nice and detailed day time scenes are. It's fantastic. 5/5.
Sony Italy has given the film two audio presentations; English and an Italian dub, both DTS-HD MA 5.1. Oddly, for an Italian Blu-ray, Sony has only given the film the subtitles in French. The English audio sounds great; considering that a lot of sound effects used in the film are reused from the past ten to fifteen years. I give the audio track 5/5.
Most of the bonus material is in Italian. Backstage with the Crew; behind the scenes that lasts for fifty minutes. Backstage with the Cast; almost twenty minutes and I was livid while watching this part. Thomas Kretschmann is talking about how he acts and goes on about the film and flat out says; "I have no idea what we are doing here." With how this film is, I can honestly believe that. Rutger Hauer even looks lost and confused talking about this film. And finally a music video called Kiss Me Dracula, by Claudio Simonetti. 2.5/5.
Sony Italy has given Dario's film a great release. However, I don't know if I can honestly recommend the film. I would probably choose Deep Red or Susperia over Dracula 3D. Be cautious going into this film; don't go in thinking this is his return to making great horror. You'll be sadly mistaken. 4/5.