Horror of Dracula (1958)

Horror of Dracula (1958), directed by Terence Fisher.

The first Hammer Films Dracula and the first of many starring Christopher Lee.

Compared to both earlier and later versions, the sets are all neat and clean. The Count seems a perfect, if distant, gentleman when in a social mood. In this edition Harker knows all about vampires and arrives with a secret plan to destroy him. That doesn't go so well, but van Helsing is also on the case.

The only part I remember from childhood is how the dapper doctor turns into an action hero in the last scene: jumping up onto a table, pulling down the curtains and improvising a crucifix from candlesticks.

The OAR is 1.66, changed to 1.77 on this disc. Part of a four-film set of Hammer Draculas, each rated lower than the one before it.