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The Return of Dracula [Blu-ray]
(Paul Landres, 1958)
Review by Gary Tooze
Theatrical: Gramercy Pictures
Region: 'A' (as verified by the Oppo Blu-ray player)
Disc Size: 23,282,098,967 bytes
Feature Size: 22,559,514,624 bytes
Video Bitrate: 34.99 Mbps
Case: Standard Blu-ray case
Release date: October 18th, 2016
Aspect ratio: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p / 23.976 fps
Video codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video
DTS-HD Master Audio English 1941 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1941 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)
• English, None
• Trailer (2:13)
For those who like their vampires with that certain European
panache, The Return of Dracula is sure to thrill.
Francis Lederer (The
Man I Married) stars as the titular Count this time
using the pseudonym Bellac Gordal as he travels from his
Transylvania home to the United States. In the guise of
being a distant relative on vacation, The Count takes up
residence at the home of the Mayberry family in sunny
Little known, apparently (since Carlos Clarens and Les Daniels both ignore it in their key books on the horror genre), but a surprisingly 'deep' piece of schlock, ignoring most of the drive-in requirements of the time and building up a flat, grey, joyless picture of vampire Lederer searching for 'love' in Middle America - and thus the regeneration which only the New World can give his dying 'culture'. Mucho cheapo, and probably for devotees only, but they ought to find it quietly remarkable.Excerpt from TimeOut located HERE
On the surface, this low-budget vampire story seems nothing more than the basic Dracula story transplanted to California, and on the level of plot, that's pretty much what it is. But there's a lot of creativity at work here; the whole movie seems oddly paced, but this ends up making it just seem all the more unsettling. There are also a lot of touches that flesh out the vampire cliches and draw the viewer into the situations; the way that the men getting ready to stake the vampire wait until the rays of sunlight actually start coming over the horizon, the rather startling detail that the vampire's victims hear his voice talking to them while we viewers don't hear a thing, and the way the immigration man twiddles his cigarette lighter all fascinate and draw us into the story.Excerpt from Dave Sindelarof SciFiFilm.org located HERE
Image : NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.
The Return of Dracula arrives on Blu-ray from Olive Films. This is only single-layered but has a max'ed out bitrate. The source seems to have good density and the image is dark with piercing black levels. It's consistent and watchable in the original 1.85:1 aspect ratio without detrimental flaws. There isn't much depth but no noise or speckles/damage. The Blu-ray does its job well in producing a healthy 1080P image.
CLICK EACH BLU-RAY CAPTURE TO SEE ALL IMAGES IN FULL 1920X1080 RESOLUTION
Olive use a DTS-HD Master 2.0 channel track at 1941 kbps (24-bit) in the original English language. There are sparse effects in the film - but the Gerald Fried (Curse of the Faceless Man, A Killer in the Family, The Baby, and Kubrick's films Fear and Desire, Killer's Kiss, The Killing and Paths of Glory as well as venturing later into work in TV - Star Trek - and also the notable Joseph H. Lewis' western Terror in a Texas Town) score extends the suspense - you may also hear some Gregorian Chants in the background. There are optional English subtitles offered and my Oppo has identified it as being a region 'A'-locked.
Onlya trailer which is the bare-bones route that Olive are going with the majority of their releases.
October 20th, 2016
About the Reviewer: Hello, fellow Beavers! I have been interested in film since I viewed a Chaplin festival on PBS when I was around 9 years old. I credit DVD with expanding my horizons to fill an almost ravenous desire to seek out new film experiences. I currently own approximately 9500 DVDs and have reviewed over 5000 myself. I appreciate my discussion Listserv for furthering my film education and inspiring me to continue running DVDBeaver. Plus a healthy thanks to those who donate and use our Amazon links.
Although I never wanted to become one of those guys who
focused 'too much' on image and sound quality - I
find HD is swiftly pushing me in that direction.
Oppo Digital BDP-83 Universal Region FREE Blu-ray/SACD
Gary W. Tooze
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