Now that the movie has come to home entertainment, I immediately checked it out because I have been interested in this since I first heard about it and the plan behind it. I like the idea of the shared Universal Monster Universe that they are attempting to create...that's odd to say.
How was the film in my opinion? Well honestly I thought it was awesome. It took a section story that is usually not focused on and basically told us an origin story for the world's most famous vampire. Legendary's streak is still going for me; not one Legendary film has disappointed me making them my new favorite movie company. Let's get into more detail of what I liked.
Luke Evans plays the titular character this time and he did a fantastic job at playing this warrior who has seen many amounts of blood spilled in war and just wants to have peace but is forced into a war. Not only did a good job acting wise but his action scenes were very impressive. Sure a lot of his fighting was done with CGI but there were practical fights and he was very cool to watch. Also the character's struggle from man to monster was handled excellently by both visuals and writing. You really feel the strain he goes through trying to hold back these urges to feed and you can see that Vlad (Dracula) wants to do no evil and these urges are practically killing him physically and emotionally.
Charles Dance plays the "Master Vampire" as IMDB lists him but I'm going to call him Nosferatu since his overall look is so similar that I can't call him anything else. While his character is not in the film a lot, the character did leave an impact as one creepy villain.
Dominic Cooper plays the movie's main villain Mehmed and for the most part he came off as a very typical villain but still effective mostly because of Cooper's acting.
Sarah Gadon and Art Parkinson play Vlad's wife and child; they weren't anything special but not bad at all. The kid was actually a decent actor which is something that Hollywood has gotten better with in recent years and Sarah Gadon provided an okay love interest but just a warning,
If you know the story of Dracula, you can predict how the story goes with her.
One of the things that really made me love this film was that it gave me a vampire lore that didn't make me want to burst out laughing like in most vampire films today. No here, it respected vampire lore very much; I loved how Vlad became a vampire and what entails if he feasts on human blood, I loved all the abilities and senses Vlad had as a vampire such as his vision and the one thing that this movie's main selling point was: Bat Manipulation. Not only can his body break apart piece by piece into a swarm of bats but he can command bats like an army. How he fights with the bats will either make you hate those scenes or love them. Personally I loved it, it was something that I had been wanting for years at it was great to see it.
Now with such spectacles of powers and the time period, visuals is a key thing for this film and luckily they did not disappoint. There was one moment that shows the fight in the reflection of a sword blade and it looked pretty fake there but for every other time, the visuals of Vlad's abilities, the practical effects (costume design, sets, and makeup), and the scenery were just gorgeous to look at.
The music for the film was pretty forgettable, not much to say there.
There was one thing that bugged me but it was small and didn't hurt the film that much. It means spoilers so read it if you want to.
So the Transylvanians are holding out in a monastery atop a mountain and when the Turks take Vlad's son, his wife falls off and Vlad flies after her. When they reach the bottom, the son is already at the bottom on the back of Mehmed's horse. Either Mehmed has the fastest horse or that's pretty bad editting.
While the story can be a bit predictable in places I still found Dracula Untold to be a great breath of fresh air for vampire films. Sure it's not the Dracula that you are probably not used to so if you are looking for the creepy and dark vampire film then look somewhere else but if you are in need of a great dark action/fantasy film then I recommend Dracula Untold. In my ratings I give this a High Gold which is like an 8 or 9/10 but I will make it an 8.5/10.
Now there is something I'd like to talk about but it equals spoiling something major so go ahead and exit out of the review.
One of the scenes in this movie is very short but I can tell people will either hate it: the ending. After Vlad gives his son to Brother Lucian and sacrifices himself to stop the vampires he created, the strange man gives the burnt carcass of Dracula his blood making him reawaken. It cuts to modern day where Vlad meets a woman that looks exactly like his wife. If you know the story then you can guess: it's Mina. As this is happening, the Master Vampire is watching completely rejuvenated. Dracula and Mina walk off together and the Master Vampire follows saying, "Let the games begin." And it cuts to black. If you hate sequel-baiting then this scene definitely will irritate you but personally I like that they are basically making a Marvel Universe with monsters and I am looking forward to see what they do. Will the monsters team up Avengers style or will it be an all out brawl between these monsters? We shall see in the future. Honestly, I kind of want it to be the first one with a plot idea that I will make in my next article.
So tell me what you thought about Dracula Untold. Did you love it, hate it, did you think it was meh? Let me know in the comments below!