Friday, January 30, 2009

Son of Dracula (1943), Robert Siodmak.

Southern Gothic version of the story, with plantation owner's daughter bringing "Count Alucard" to the US in her search for immortality. Dracula, for all you anagram whizzes out there, is not referred to as the "Son of" in the movie anywhere, but who cares. He's played by Lon Chaney (Jr.), who I was always curious about but who has little effect here - he's more plot device than character. I thought he could at least put on an accent, considering the Old World/ New World contrasts even the characters are talking about. It's possible he took a completely different approach to distance himself from Bela Lugosi's portrayal as anything else would look like an effort to imitate. Plot would have entertained me even if it had none of the vampire shtick - Louise Allbriton's scheming was enough fun. Would you believe Dracula comes off as a bit of a cuckold in this one?

In this quest to understand "B's" I must confess I had no idea that all these Universal monster movies were being made as early as the 30s and through the war years - I always associated them with the 50s for some reason.

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