‘Dracula Untold’ drains the excitement from moviegoers

Joyce Melendez, Staff Writer

Bram Stoker’s Dracula has allowed for many films to be made with various interpretations of how vampires behave. The name itself draws interest from vampire fans who enjoy the gore and romanticism associated with Dracula. For those who appreciate a more subtle interpretation of vampires, Dracula Untold may be of interest especially with its PG-13 rating.

The story itself was interesting, but the execution was not top-notch. While it does the job of entertaining moviegoers, there is much left to be desired. Dracula Untold has its moments of being intriguing but it doesn’t last long. Moviegoers may be left questioning whether they truly enjoyed the film.

Gary Shore’s directorial debut is one that is met with mixed feelings. Rather than focusing on the storyline created by Stoker, the film creates Count Dracula’s origin by depicting the story of Vlad the Impaler, who is played by Luke Evans. Other notable characters include Mirena, Vlad’s wife, who is played by Sarah Gadon and Mehmed II who is played by Dominic Cooper.

Moviegoers may be interested in the historical aspect of the film that establishes the conflict that ultimately leads to Vlad becoming the legendary Dracula. For those who are unaware of the history, it revolves around the conflict of the Sultan of Turkey wanting boys from Transylvania in order to train them to serve in the Turkish army. Since Vlad is the prince of Transylvania there is a struggle with what should be done and what is best for his people.

Despite telling the story of Vlad the Impaler, who was notoriously brutal, the film does not incorporate much bloodshed which may leave people unsatisfied. The story could have been depicted better if blood were more prevalent and if certain scenes were filmed differently.

For the most part, the structure of the film could have been organized better in order to prevent there being a plateau with the moviegoers’ interest. The film takes place over a span of three days, though it feels rushed, due to the fact that vampires can’t be out in sunlight, so there is an emphasis on the latter half of a day. With that being said, the effectiveness of some scenes suffered because the lighting made capturing everything a bit difficult. With the fast paced nature of the story, taking the time to slow down and capture more details in scenes would have made for a more enjoyable movie experience.

Luckily, the actors did a good job with conveying believable emotions. Rather than being hollow shells, the characters are relatable which keeps viewers connected to the story. The costume design also allowed for a better connection to be made because it captured the essence of the time period. The music score also contributed to making the movie interesting because it was simple and did not distract from what was going on in the story. These aspects hold viewers’ interest despite the fact that there are characteristics in the film that fall short.

While the film isn’t a complete waste of time, it lacks certain characteristics that make a movie enjoyable. For those who are a fan of action films mixed with fantasy, Dracula Untold might leave you wanting more.