Vampire films have been a staple since the era of silent films, so much so that the depiction of vampires in popular culture is strongly based upon their depiction in films throughout the years. The most popular cinematic adaptation of vampire fiction has been from Bram Stoker’s Dracula, with over 170 versions to date. Running a distant second are adaptations of Carmilla by Sheridan Le Fanu. By 2005, Dracula had been the subject of more films than any other fictional character.
As folklore, vampires are defined by their need to feed on blood and on their manipulative nature; this theme has been held in common throughout the many adaptations. Although vampires are usually associated with the horror (and sometimes zombie genre), vampire films may also fall into the drama, action, science fiction, romance, comedy or fantasy genres, amongst others.
Early cinematic vampires in other such films as The Vampire (1913), directed by Robert G. Vignola, were not undead bloodsucking fiends but ‘vamps’. Such femme fatales were inspired by a poem by Rudyard Kipling called “The Vampire”, composed in 1897. This poem was written as kind of commentary on a painting of a female vampire by Philip Burne-Jones exhibited in the same year. Lyrics from Kipling’s poem: A fool there was … , describing a seduced man, were used as the title of the film A Fool There Was (1915) starring Theda Bara as the ‘vamp’ in question and the poem was used in the publicity for the film.
An authentic supernatural vampire features in the landmark Nosferatu (1922 Germany, directed by F. W. Murnau) starring Max Schreck as the hideous Count Orlok. This was an unlicensed version of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, based so closely on the novel that the estate sued and won, with all copies ordered to be destroyed. It would be painstakingly restored in 1994 by a team of European scholars from the five surviving prints that had escaped destruction. The destruction of the vampire, in the closing sequence of the film, by sunlight rather than the traditional stake through the heart proved very influential on later films and became an accepted part of vampire lore.
The next classic treatment of the vampire legend was an adaptation of the stage play based on Stoker’s novel Dracula, Universal’s Dracula (1931) starring Bla Lugosi as Count Dracula. Lugosi’s performance was so popular that his Hungarian accent and sweeping gestures became characteristics now commonly associated with Dracula. Five years after the release of the film, Universal released Dracula’s Daughter (1936), a direct sequel that starts immediately after the end of the first film. A second sequel, Son of Dracula, starring Lon Chaney, Jr. followed in 1943. Despite his apparent death in the 1931 film, the Count returned to life in three more Universal films of the mid-1940s: House of Frankenstein (1944) and House of Dracula (1945)both starring John Carradineand Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948). While Lugosi had played a vampire in two other films during the 1930s and 1940s, it was only in this final film that he played Count Dracula on-screen for the second (and last) time.
A transition between the Universal tradition and the later Hammer style is exemplified by the 1957 Mexican film El Vampiro that showed the vampire fangs (Universal did not).
Dracula was reincarnated for a new generation in Hammer Films series, starring Christopher Lee as the Count. In the first of these films Dracula (1958) the spectacular death of the title character through being exposed to the sun, reinforced this part of vampire lore, first established in Nosferatu, and made it virtually axiomatic in succeeding films. Lee returned as Dracula in all but two of the seven sequels. A more faithful adaptation of Stoker’s novel appeared as Dracula (1992) directed by Francis Ford Coppola though also identifying Count Dracula with the notorious medieval Balkan ruler Vlad the Impaler.
A distinct subgenre of vampire films, ultimately inspired by Le Fanu’s Carmilla explored the topic of the lesbian vampire. Although implied in Dracula’s Daughter, the first openly lesbian vampire was in Blood and Roses (1960) by Roger Vadim. More explicit lesbian content was provided in Hammer’s Karnstein Trilogy. The first of these, The Vampire Lovers, (1970), starring Ingrid Pitt and Madeline Smith, was a relatively straightforward re-telling of LeFanu’s novella, but with more overt violence and sexuality. Later films in this subgenre such as Vampyres (1974) became even more explicit in their depiction of sex, nudity and violence.
Beginning with Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948) the vampire has often been the subject of comedy. The Fearless Vampire Killers (1967) by Roman Polanski was a notable parody of the genre. Other comedic treatments, of variable quality, include Vampira (1974) featuring David Niven as a lovelorn Dracula, Love at First Bite (1979) featuring George Hamilton, My Best Friend Is a Vampire (1988), Innocent Blood (1992), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992), Dracula: Dead and Loving It (1995), directed by Mel Brooks with Leslie Nielsen, and, more recently, Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement’s mockumentary take on the subject, What We Do in the Shadows (2014).
Another development in some vampire films has been a change from supernatural horror to science fictional explanations of vampirism. The Last Man on Earth (1964, directed by Ubaldo Ragona), The Omega Man (1971 US, directed by Boris Sagal) and two other films were all based on Richard Matheson’s novel I Am Legend. They explain the condition as having a natural cause. Vampirism is explained as a kind of virus in David Cronenberg’s Rabid (1976) and Red-Blooded American Girl (1990) directed by David Blyth, as well as in the Blade trilogy to a limited extent.
Race has been another theme, as exemplified by the blaxploitation picture Blacula (1972) and its sequel Scream Blacula Scream.
Though always a representation of passion and desire, since the time of Bla Lugosi’s Dracula (1931) the vampire, male or female, has usually been portrayed as an alluring sex symbol. Christopher Lee, Delphine Seyrig, Frank Langella, and Lauren Hutton are just a few examples of actors who brought great sex-appeal into their portrayal of the vampire. Latterly the implicit sexual themes of vampire film have become much more overt, culminating in such films as Gayracula (1983) and The Vampire of Budapest, (1995), two pornographic all-male vampire films, and Lust for Dracula (2005), a softcore pornography all-lesbian adaptation of Bram Stoker’s classic.
There is, however, a very small subgenre, pioneered in Murnau’s seminal Nosferatu (1922) in which the portrayal of the vampire is similar to the hideous creature of European folklore. Max Schrek’s disturbing portrayal of this role in Murnau’s film was copied by Klaus Kinski in Werner Herzog’s remake Nosferatu the Vampyre (1979). In Shadow of the Vampire (2000). directed by E. Elias Merhige, Willem Dafoe plays Max Schrek, himself, though portrayed here as an actual vampire. Dafoe’s character is the ugly, disgusting creature of the original Nosferatu. Stephen King’s Salem’s Lot (1979) notably depicts vampires as terrifying, simple-minded creatures, without erotism, and with the only desire to feed on the blood of others. The main vampire in the Subspecies films, Radu, also exhibits similar aesthetic influences, such as long fingers and nails and generally grotesque facial features. This type of vampire is also featured in the film 30 Days of Night.
A major character in most vampire films is the vampire hunter, of which Stoker’s Abraham Van Helsing is a prototype. However, killing vampires has changed. Where Van Helsing relied on a stake through the heart, in Vampires 1998, directed by John Carpenter, Jack Crow (James Woods) has a heavily armed squad of vampire hunters, and in Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992, directed by Fran Rubel Kuzui), writer Joss Whedon (who created TV’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer and spin-off Angel) attached The Slayer, Buffy Summers (Kristy Swanson in the film, Sarah Michelle Gellar in the TV series), to a network of Watchers and mystically endowed her with superhuman powers.
By far, the most well-known and popular vampire in the films is Count Dracula. An amazing number of films have been filmed over the years depicting the evil count, some of which are ranked among the greatest depictions of vampires on film. Dracula has over 170 film representations to date making him the most frequently portrayed character in horror films; also he has highest number of film appearances overall followed by Sherlock Holmes.
One of the first television series with a vampire as a main character was the 1964 comedy series The Munsters. Lily Munster and Grandpa (also known as Vladimir Dracula, Count of Transylvania) are vampires.
The Munsters was followed in 1966 by the Gothic soap opera Dark Shadows, in which the vampire Barnabas Collins became a main character.
In 1985 The Little Vampire was a television series made for children. It tells the adventures of the vampire child Rdiger and his human friend Anton.
Forever Knight (19921996) was the first vampire detective story, later followed by many similar series like Angel, Moonlight, Blood Ties and Vampire Prosecutor.
In 1997 the teenage vampire series Buffy the Vampire Slayer became popular around the world. Buffy is a teenage girl who finds out that she is a vampire slayer. She also finds herself drawn to a vampire.
True Blood (2008) centers on the adventures of the telepathic waitress Sookie Stackhouse who falls in love with a vampire. In the same year BBC Three series Being Human became popular in Britain. It features an unconventional trio of a vampire, a werewolf and a ghost who are sharing a flat in Bristol.
In 2009 The Vampire Diaries told the story of the school girl Elena Gilbert, who falls in love with vampire Stefan Salvatore but finds herself also drawn to Stefan’s brother Damon Salvatore.
The Strain (2014) is based on the novel of the same name by Guillermo del Toro.
One of the first animated vampire series was the 1989 series Count Duckula, a parody of Dracula. In 1985, the anime film adaptation of the inaugural Vampire Hunter D novel was released direct to video, and became popular in both Japan and the United States, prompting an adaptation of the third novel into the also direct to video film Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust in 2000. The two films and the novels they are based on revolve around the eponymous D, a vampire hunter who is the apparent half-vampire/half-human son of Dracula who battles vampires in the year 12,090 AD. In 1997 the anime series Vampire Princess Miyu became popular in Japan, many other anime followed. Later in 2012, Hotel Transylvania was released, followed by a sequel in 2015, Hotel Transylvania 2 and in 2018’s Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation.
Another Japanese anime series, Rosario + Vampire, portrays one of the leading female characters, Moka Akashiya, as a vampire, whose demonic powers are sealed inside her with a rosary seal on her neck. The series portrays other kinds of fictional monsters as well, including a witch and a snow-woman.
From 2001 onward vampire web series became popular around the world. One of the first web series was the 2001 series The Hunted. It is about a group of vampire slayers who have been bitten by vampires (but not yet turned into vampires) and try to fight the bloodsucking vampires. The Hunted was followed by 30 Days of Night: Blood Trails (2007) and 30 Days of Night: Dust to Dust (2008) who were based on the films 30 Days of Night and 30 Days of Night: Dark Days. In 2009 the MTV online series Valemont follows Maggie Gracen who decides to infiltrate Valemont University, because her brother Eric has vanished. She soon finds out that the University is full of vampires. The 2009 web series I Heart Vampires focuses on two teenage vampire fans who find out that vampires are more than real. In 2011 the Being Human spin-off Becoming Human was released online. It is about a vampire, a werewolf and a ghost who go to a school together and try to solve a murder. The 2014 vampire series Carmilla tells the story of the vampire Carmilla Karnstein who visits the university and falls in love with a human girl.
View original post here:
Vampire films – Wikipedia
- Vampire - Monsters - D&D Beyond - January 9th, 2019
- Vampire | Vampire Knight Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia - November 13th, 2018
- Vampire | Warhammer Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia - November 10th, 2018
- The Sun for the Vampire - Play it now at Coolmath-Games.com - November 10th, 2018
- The Vampire (1957) - IMDb - November 2nd, 2018
- The 50 Best Vampire Movies of All Time - CRAVE - October 31st, 2018
- Vampire - MTG Wiki - October 5th, 2018
- Vampire Rave is for Real Vampires - September 24th, 2018
- Caroline Forbes | The Vampire Diaries Wiki | FANDOM ... - September 18th, 2018
- Spike | Buffyverse Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia - September 18th, 2018
- Welcome - Camping Vampire Bran - September 7th, 2018
- Vampire (WOD) | White Wolf | FANDOM powered by Wikia - August 13th, 2018
- Clan | Vampire: The Masquerade Bloodlines Wiki | FANDOM ... - July 30th, 2018
- Vampire | Charmed | FANDOM powered by Wikia - July 5th, 2018
- Vampire Facelift | Reviews - June 29th, 2018
- Vampire | D&D 5th Edition on Roll20 Compendium - June 18th, 2018
- Real / Living Vampire Glossary of Terminology - HuffPost - September 7th, 2017
- Twilight vampire sheds his heartthrob image - Helena Independent Record - September 7th, 2017
- 'Vampire Diaries' actor Michael Malarkey debuts haunting new album, 'Mongrels'exclusive - Alternative Press - September 7th, 2017
- Are vampires real, do they really drink human blood and how many ... - The Sun - September 7th, 2017
- New Genetic Discovery Explains The Skin-Blistering 'Vampire' Disease - ScienceAlert - September 7th, 2017
- Vampire Weekend's Ezra Koenig is apparently making an anime for ... - AV Club - September 6th, 2017
- Ex-Vampire Weekender Rostam Batmanglij Finds Fresh Ways to Subvert Pop - L.A. Weekly - September 6th, 2017
- Rostam Finds His Own Voice On The Tender New Single 'Half-Light' - UPROXX - September 6th, 2017
- Vampire Weekend's Ezra Koenig announces an anime series for Netflix - The Daily Dot - September 6th, 2017
- Vampire - Manga - MyAnimeList.net - September 6th, 2017
- Joe Arpaio is a vampire that feeds on Mexicans (AKA Tlahuelpuchi) - Oaklandpostonline - September 6th, 2017
- A homeless wannabe vampire ripped off a pigeon's head and chugged its blood - Rare.us - September 2nd, 2017
- Nina Dobrev Spreads Positive Messages About Beauty On Social ... - moviepilot.com - September 2nd, 2017
- A break from the usual bloodsuckers - Harvard Gazette - September 2nd, 2017
- The Vampire Diaries' Penelope Mitchell Joins Hellboy Reboot - Dread Central - September 1st, 2017
- Harvard Film Archive to host vampire movie marathon over Labor Day weekend - The Boston Globe - September 1st, 2017
- Chosen One of the Day: the mullets of The Lost Boys - SYFY WIRE (blog) - August 31st, 2017
- Homeless man claiming to be vampire rips pigeon's head off, drinks blood in Bryant Park - New York Daily News - August 31st, 2017
- Vampire Weekend's Former Mastermind Rostam Batmanglij is Flying Solo - Out Magazine - August 31st, 2017
- Maniac beheads pigeons, drinks their blood in crowded park - New York Post - August 31st, 2017
- Hellboy Reboot Casts Vampire Diaries Alum Penelope Mitchell - CBR (blog) - August 31st, 2017
- Hellboy adds The Vampire Diaries actress Penelope Mitchell - Yahoo Movies UK - August 31st, 2017
- Como jugar blackjack en casa - Vampire weekend casino de paris - Forward Florida - August 30th, 2017
- 'Vampire Diaries' star Nina Dobrev gets candid on going makeup-free, current politic climate: 'It scares me' - Fox News - August 28th, 2017
- Is Darren Aronofsky's 'mother!' a Vampire Movie? - Bloody Disgusting - August 26th, 2017
- Star Trek Writers to Adapt A People's History of the Vampire Uprising - Den of Geek US - August 24th, 2017
- Chosen One of the Day: the many, many pants of Buffy the Vampire Slayer - SYFY WIRE (blog) - August 24th, 2017
- Nina Dobrev Just Had A Low-Key "Vampire Diaries" Reunion - TeenVogue.com - August 24th, 2017
- This New Podcast About Melbourne's Vampire Gigolo Murder Will Make You Question Everything - Triple M - August 24th, 2017
- My Pretty Vampire's Cartoonish Violence - The Portland Mercury - August 24th, 2017
- "Vampire Princess Miyu" Character Designer's Lithograph Exhibition Coming This Fall - Crunchyroll News - August 24th, 2017
- Matthew Goode to Play Lead Vampire in 'A Discovery of Witches' - Anglophenia - August 24th, 2017
- JD Payne & Patrick McKay Bite Into Fox & 21 Laps' 'A People's History Of The Vampire Uprising' - Deadline - August 22nd, 2017
- Suck city: Movie brings old vampire to New York Brooklyn Daily - Brooklyn Daily - August 22nd, 2017
- Vampire Diaries Ian Somerhalder gushes over wife Nikki after giving birth - Her.ie - August 22nd, 2017
- Buffy The Vampire Slayer Creator Joss Whedon's Ex-Wife Blasts Him For Cheating Throughout Their 16-Year Marriage - Bravo (blog) - August 22nd, 2017
- Marshfield 'vampire killer' loses suit against Parole Board - The Patriot Ledger - August 20th, 2017
- University's vampire expert faces employment tribunal after 'he tasted a female student's blood' - The Sun - August 20th, 2017
- New 'Firefly,' 'Buffy The Vampire Slayer' Collectible Box Sets Announced - Geeks of Doom - August 19th, 2017
- Nina Dobrev explains why she left 'Vampire Diaries' - ABC News - August 17th, 2017
- 'Carmilla' Takes a Bite Out of Period Vampire Lore - Bloody Disgusting - August 17th, 2017
- Kate Beckinsale not a vampire this time (but, oh, those leather pants) - Sentinel & Enterprise - August 17th, 2017
- Vampire Vs. Climate Change Deniers Dark Fang - Comics Beat - August 17th, 2017
- 'The Vampire Diaries' new spinoff series now in talks, The CW president reveals - Blasting News - August 17th, 2017
- [Review Repost] Michael O'Shea's 'The Transfiguration' is a Refreshing and Moving Vampire Tale - Bloody Disgusting - August 16th, 2017
- A Vampire's Fight Against Global Warming & Oil Industry In IMAGE's DARK FANG - Newsarama - August 16th, 2017
- The Vampire Diaries boss to direct episode of Riverdale - EW.com (blog) - August 14th, 2017
- Vampire Comedy 'Bite Me': A Love Song to the Weirdos - IndieWire - August 13th, 2017
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer marathon and brunch happening in Glasgow tomorrow - Glasgow Live - August 13th, 2017
- The Vampire Diaries actor Ian Somerhalder and wife Nikki Reed blessed with a baby girl - India Today - August 11th, 2017
- 'The Vampire Diaries' Ian Somerhalder & Nikki Reed enjoy new daughter privately - Blasting News - August 11th, 2017
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer at 25: Where Is the Cast Now? - Parade - August 11th, 2017
- FREE VAMPIRE XXX VIDEOS & VAMP SEX TUBE MOVIES - August 11th, 2017
- James Marsters explains why 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' is this generation's 'Star Trek' - Metro US - August 10th, 2017
- Demon Hunter Sounds Like Vampire Hunter DWith Some Caveats - Dread Central - August 10th, 2017
- Katie Skelly Combines Cute Art with Sexy Horror in My Pretty Vampire - CBR (blog) - August 10th, 2017
- Fox retooling high-concept vampire pilot The Passage for Fall 2018 - SYFY WIRE (blog) - August 10th, 2017
- Sorry Fellas, But 'Vampire Diaries' Star Nina Dobrev Is Dating Someone and He's Super Cute! - Life & Style Weekly - August 8th, 2017
- Rostam Talks 'Launching a Whole Universe' With New Solo LP - RollingStone.com - August 8th, 2017
- Broken hand and dislocated elbow puts paid to The Vampire's MMA Bantamweight title bid - New Straits Times Online - August 6th, 2017
- First Look at Vampire Comedy Vidar the Vampire - Dread Central - August 4th, 2017
- Vampire Diaries Fans Are Getting ANOTHER Spin-Off - Hit 107 - August 4th, 2017
- 5 things to know, and when you can visit Vampire Penguin in Granite Bay - Sacramento Business Journal - August 4th, 2017
- 'The Lost Boys,' Found: How a Teen Vampire Movie Rose From the Dead To Become a Cult Classic - Decider - August 3rd, 2017
Reviewed and Recommended by Erik Baquero