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Taste the Blood of Dracula
AKA: Das Blut von Dracula, Wie schmeckt das Blut von Dracula?

GB, 1969, Color, 95 min
'Director Peter Sasdy
Screenplay John Elder
Photography Arthur Grant
Music James Bernard, Philiph Martell
Christopher Lee Dracula
Geoffrey Keen William Hargood
Petter Sellis Samuel Paxton
John Carson Jonathan Sekker
Gwen Warford Martha Hargood
Linda Hayden Alice Hargood

Three old libertines, acting as upright men towards the outside, are looking for the ultimate chills and therefore join young Lord Courtley who is said to be in league with Satan. With the help of some utensils that once belonged to the deceased count Dracula and the clotted blood of the prince of darkness himself, they want to call him back to life. But then, our three gentlemen get scared to hell, they freak out and beat Lord Courtley to death. Nevertheless, the conjuration was successful and Dracula rises from the grave (which is in a more ridiculous than scary scene). Now he swears revenge for his murdered servant. He takes possession of the three evil doers' grown up children and makes one after the other kill their fathers. But the righteous Paul, who thanks to a book knows quite a lot about vampirism, sets out to free his bride Alice from the fangs of the vampire. Then, in an old church he causes the master of the undead's exit... and he does it without the help of van Helsing - Peter Cushing unfortunately had to stay at home this time.

Simple story, hurriedly filmed, this is how the cooking was done in the Hammer kitchen around 1970. The good years were over and there had already been first flops in the production company's success story. Unfortunately this becomes too obvious in the later Hammer-movies (from 1967/68 on) before the final (not quite glorious) end of the legend in the 70s.

Nevertheless, "Taste the Blood of Dracula" can be listed among the better movies of the series. Director Peter Sasdy did a good job, which means that he was capable to put a banal story in scene, and he also proofed his talent for uncanny atmosphere (left apart Draculas resurrection) and considerable backgrounds. Besides Christopher Lee (with a first-class presentation of "his" Dracula but unfortunately too few scenes) this movie shows Hammer Icon Linda Hayden, which for some die-hard fans should already be enough of a reason to watch the movie.

To sum it up: "Taste the Blood of Dracula" is fairly good if you want to watch some movie late at night, nothing more and nothing less. It doesn't have a lot in common with Hammer's first Dracula movie from 1958, but the later Dracula-movies couldn't come up to its standard anymore... but that's a different story.

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