Film Review – Dracula Untold (2014)

So my boyfriend is known to pick out weird movies to watch. Typically, 65% of his picks are overhyped action films, and the rest are either Stallone, Statham, or Schwarzenegger classics. He knows I like more cerebral picks, and am very skeptical with his choices! When he came over with Dracula Untold, I decided to give him the benefit of the doubt. By no means am I a Dracula super fan. What I can appreciate about the film throughout is the atmosphere. This dark and eerie cinematography really sets the mood for the viewer and it really helped me to understand this world that Gary Shore has directed for us.

Vlad the Impaler (Luke Evans), now the prince of Wallachia, was a child soldier who endured a dark journey to where he’s come. Vlad’s lifelong rival, Sultan Mehmed (Dominic Cooper) comes to him with a great ultimatum: surrender him 1000 Transylvanian child soldiers or pay the price for resistance. Damn, that’s some horrible decision to make. Vlad is known to stand by his people and do what is always best for them, but the time has come for him to see how far he’d go to protect his city. He seeks a certain strength that only an old vamp beyond the mountain can provide. There are some fine points of the movie, the cool mood setting landscapes being one of them, but unfortunately there were more terrible things about it.

Luke Evans as Vlad the Impaler

Luke Evans as Vlad the Impaler

I wouldn’t say that this rendition of Dracula was a waste of time to me, but it could’ve been better…a whole lot better. Although I enjoyed most of the visual appeal and effects, and story, I wish it brought me more emotion. What’s a tremendous storyline like this without emotion? I just felt like there was something missing. Casting Evans as Vlad was a smart move, I feel. He definitely has the strong features for the role, but maybe his lines were too generic for me. He did become favorable in the film. What I have trouble understanding is Cooper’s acting as Mehmed. The last film I saw him in (one I also reviewed) was Need For Speed (2014). He was average there and he is average here. I’d like to state that seeing him with a deep tan was odd. I guess it was necessary, being a leader of the Turks and all, but what threw me off more was his performance. His accent also, but nevermind that. Cooper has the edgy look in his face, but not the acting to back it up. I wanna see him challenge himself, he’s got the potential. But I won’t let my review rest solely on one man’s performance. If you are true to the story that is Dracula, then you may not appreciate this film. I do wanna point out that it’s not as terrible as some audiences have said. It’s just the lack of emotion that pulls you into a story as peculiar as this one.

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