Sequels and re-imaginings of the same story is something that is as old as film itself. If you were upset about them rebooting Spiderman after only coming out with original ten years ago or if you can’t believe that there is another generic franchise entry coming out in the summer theater circuit, then you should know better. As early as the thirties, studios seized upon an idea that gave them an iconic character and remade and sequelized it until there was no more life in the story or the characters anymore. Only one example of this is the legacy of Dracula. Dracula’s Daughter was one of the first sequels to come out from the original and it is one of the most original of the sequels from this era (at least that I have seen…).
The film is supposed to start where the original stopped. Count Dracula and Renfield are taken to a morgue and Van Helsing is arrested for murder. But a mysterious woman with a really sweet ring on her finger shows up and steals the bodies. She burns them hoping that she can get rid of the curse. If you are asking what curse, then you did not read the title…. because she has the same curse as her father. When this inevitably does not work, she takes a man who claims that he can cure her of her condition and tries to seduce him. But he is in love with another woman, his wise cracking assistant… The tension, the intrigue and most importantly the bad accents and dramatic clothing! How will I ever cope with such an engrossing tale?
This film doesn’t know quite what it wants to be. Part of the film is a police procedural, another part is a horror film (not in the modern sense but in the classic sense) and yet another part is a romantic comedy. All of these mash together to make a film that is clearly not taking itself too seriously. Every actor is aware of their over acting skills and reach as far up as they can. It may be my own bias coming in but I really enjoyed the parts with the ordinary couple going back and forth together. In one scene the love interest prank calls the man she is in love with. This enrages him so much that he chews out the next person who calls him and it turns out to be his boss. It was a cute moment in the middle of some serious talk about the vampire’s addiction to blood. I also enjoyed the lady vampire vamping the hell out of all dramatic clothing she wears. She is so tortured and yet so glamorous! The plot is rote and the conceit of Dracula barely touched on and that is what I like about this film. They were able to take a sequel to an established brand and make a completely different film.