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as of: 09/27/04

Shadow of the Vampire



out of 10


E. Elias Merhige


John Malkovich
Willem Dafoe
Udo Kier


Wow. This is one cool film. I think it is best if you have watched Nosferatu and know a little bit of the background of that classic 1922 silent German Expressionist film before viewing this movie. Why? Because Shadow of the Vampire is the story of the filming of . Malkovich is great as director F.W. Murnau, and Willem Dafoe is even better playing Max Schreck, the method actor who played Count Orlock (essentially Count Dracula, but renamed to avoid copyright laws). Shadow of the Vampire is not simply a retelling of the making of a film. It gets really fun, because it assumes that Max Schreck really IS a vampire, and that Murnau, in his quest to film the ultimate vampire movie, believes he needs this real vampire to make his movie just that. When members of the film crew start dying off from some mysterious flu, Murnau tries to keep Schreck happy while at the same time keeping enough of his crew alive to finish the movie. This film is strange, to say the least. But it is strange in a good way. I highly suggest trying a double feature involving Nosferatu and then Shadow of the Vampire. Ideas like this don't come along all that often!

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