I’ve always wanted to see a Dracula film that could be described as groovy. Lucky for me, Dracula A.D. 1972 cured that desire. From the acting to the dialogue to the music, this film is 1972 personified. Is that good or bad? I don’t know, but I am sure a lot of it depends on the amount of psychedelic drugs you ingest prior to viewing.
Hammer films felt the need to re-invent the Dracula series in an effort to be more relevant amongst hipster kids of the ‘70s. I say why not, every generation has their brand of Dracula and so should the 1970’s. The thing about the ‘70s though, is most people would rather forget that it existed. You can only hear the terms “far out man” or “can you dig it” so many times before even the fondest memories turn into annoyance.
In 1972 London, a far out guy who is into all sorts of groovy stuff decides it would be a gas to bring Dracula back to life. He recruits some local tokers and bunnies to help him with a ritual that brings both Dracula, played by Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing as Van Helsing into the plot. Once Dracula is back up and running he begins to sample the locals, hot pants and all. I have it on good authority that they tasted dyn-o-mite. This of course, displeases the local police who immediately reach out to Cushing for help. The dude has played Van Helsing a million times after all. You dig?
There are lots of fun quote from in this movie with my favorites being, “That gig went out with min-skirts, you schlep” and “Weird man. Way out. I mean, spooks, hobgoblins, black magic. All that sort of stuff.” Though the dialogue is super cheesy and stilted, I found it amusing. It is part of the charm of this film. Without the ridiculous Austin Powers-esque costumes and dialogue this film would only be remembered for the girl with the nice ta-tas.
The final showdown is undoubtedly the finest moment in the film. Van Helsing vs. Dracula: 1972 style. This time it’s personal. You ever wonder if Dracula gets sick of the Van Helsings? In some form or another a Van Helsing puts an end to Dracula in, I don’t know, every movie ever made about Dracula. That has got to get old and tired after a while. Move somewhere they are not.
A fun, but ultimately useless Dracula movie that can be used to great effect for killing time and reminding yourself why the ‘70s were so far out, man. If you have any doubts, watch the clip below.
Snore Factor: ZZZ (Get some caffeine prior to watching)
Dance Party Scene: