Dracula A.D. 1972 (1972)

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6.0 Overall Score
Story: 3/10
Acting: 7/10
Visuals: 8/10

Love the '70s funk feel combined with classic Hammer, so-bad-it-is-good

Probably too dated for many

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Dracula A.D. 1972

Studio:  Hammer Film Productions

Genre(s):  Horror

Release Date(s):  September 28, 1972

MPAA Rating:  PG

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This is never going to wash out!

Dracula is killed in 1872 by Lawrence Van Helsing, and in 1972, a young man named Johnny Alucard (Christopher Neame) has tricked a group of young rebels into releasing the monster again.  Dracula finds himself in a new world and sets out to get revenge on his mortal enemy the Van Helsings by going after Lawrence Van Helsing’s great-granddaughter Jessica (Stephanie Beacham).  As Dracula slowly converts the group, Jessica’s grandfather Lorrimer Van Helsing (Peter Cushing) and the police try to find the killer.

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Obligatory hippie singing scene…

Directed by Alan Gibson, Dracula A.D. 1972 (sometimes called Dracula Today) was the seventh film in Hammer’s Dracula series and the first to have a modern setting.  Following Scars of Dracula in 1970, the movie is the first in the series to reunite Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing who first appeared in the original Hammer Dracula in 1958.  Most of the critics disliked the entry and consider it the worst of the series.

Despite others hating it, I kind of like Dracula A.D. 1972 because of the cheese-factor.  The perception of the “hippie” culture and how people (probably not connected to it) showed it is always funny to me.  The style, the bad music, the swinging kids is awful, but fun at the same time.

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Hey, I thought I was going to meet Hugh Jackman!

The story is pretty bad.  Opposed to other movies in the Dracula series, the beginning of the movie doesn’t connect with the ending of Scars of Dracula.  The rebirth is similar to the rebirth of Taste the Blood of Dracula, but the revenge story of Dracula is very generic.  With so many opportunities with Dracula exploring a new world, I wish they had gone somewhere different with it.

Christopher Lee continues to be a great Dracula and it is great to see Peter Cushing back.  Cushing had recently lost his wife and was initially scheduled to play the father of Jessica, but due to the fact he looked so old, the script was updated so he played the grandfather.  Regardless, the two actors really hold the flimsy plot together…I do like the hooligans however.

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I…am…so…angry

As opposed to many “so bad-it-is-good” films, I like how Dracula A.D. 1972 looks.  The movie is shot in a much more modern style opposed to the previous entries.  Despite the newer look, it has a feeling like other older Hammer films (partially because the inclusion of classic Hammer actors Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee).  I think the movie has a lot of style and it is almost like it is fighting itself in wanting to be more modern than the filmmakers made it.

Dracula A.D. 1972 is a different film in the Hammer Dracula series and kind of fun in its old, throwback retro-style.  I like the so-bad-it-is-good nature of the film, but I can see how people hate it.  Dracula A.D. 1972 was followed by the last Dracula film to star Christopher Lee (but the second last film in the series) The Satanic Rites of Dracula in 1973.

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Related Links:

Dracula (The Horror of Dracula) (1958)

The Brides of Dracula (1960)

Dracula Has Risen from the Grave (1968)

Taste the Blood of Dracula (1970)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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