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Bram Stoker’s Dracula

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Introduction

Bram Stoker's Dracula Abraham Stoker, more commonly known as Bram, was born near Clontarf, Ireland on November 8, 1847. The third born of seven children, Bram was confined to bed until the age of seven by an unknown illness. Though he was shy during his childhood, Bram developed into a fine athlete and academic student by his teenage years. He graduated from Trinity College, Dublin, with honours in mathematics in 1870. Bram had always dreamed of becoming a writer then finally, in 1882 his dream came true as his first book was published. After this first publication, a further 16 books would be published, but of these, none stand out like the story of Dracula, the book has been widely interpreted and adapted in many films since 1897 when it was first written (Dracula was one of the first films released, directed by Todd Browning in 1931). Despite over a century of time since the initial publication, Dracula has maintained its ability to frighten and mesmerise readers. Francis Ford Coppola's screen-version of the book, "Bram Stoker's Dracula"; however, utilises the erotic romance of the original novel in order to depict a tragic love story. The film accurately follows the general plot of the novel, yet presents the characters in a unique manner that provides a different appreciation of the characters, this is just one of the many factors that make it, arguably, the best cinematic remake of the original book. ...read more.

Middle

Jonathan is told that if he does well and pleases the count, his future at the company will be secured. Knowing that an employee has already visited the same client, he asks what happened to him, his employer just says that he had some "personal problems", Jonathan doesn't question this, as it's the other persons business. We now notice that Jonathan has all the characteristics of the classic hero, he is young, attractive and now has a sense of duty. All of Jonathan's scenes seem to be very civilised, but, all the civilised scenes, come straight after and before scenes of darkness or evil, which could imply that something bad is going to happen. Much like Dracula at the beginning of the film, Jonathan is very much in love, and must leave his partner, this likeness between the two characters, starts to make us wonder if something bad is about to happen to Jonathan. But, when we see Jonathans partner, Mina, and she is the spitting image of Dracula's true love, Elizobeta, this is when we get the omen, the real sense of something bad waiting to happen. On Jonathans journey to Transylvania, we get the classic bridging shot, in this case a moving train, to give us the sense of time passing by. ...read more.

Conclusion

When Dracula reaches over to see the picture of Mina, his shadow actually knocks the inkpot over, the ink inside the pot seems to spread, not as ink would, but more as though it were a black mist, and completely engulfs the picture of Mina, once again, a good use of a metonymy, showing that evil will be spread to Mina, and will take her in. The final image, is again, a portent of evil taking over, as Dracula is walking away, and lifts his cape, the shadow of the cape, gets a lot bigger than the object itself, and totally darkens out Jonathan. In conclusion, I feel that within the first few scenes of Bram Stoker's Dracula, if not within the first 15 minutes, the film incorporates most, if not all things needed to make a gothic film; There is a huge use of omens throughout, a lot of the film is set in a castle, the story is basically set on mystery and suspense, there is the great romance, the supernatural or unexplainable events, high emotions, plus Dracula is an ancient prophecy within himself. All these things lead us to the conclusion that Francis Ford Coppola has not only created on of the best film remakes of the original book to date, but, probably one of the best gothic films ever created. Tom Stratton ...read more.

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