Another Dracula movie you ask? Haven’t we had enough vampire movies yet? Well, maybe not. Dracula Untold gives the traditionally evil bloodsucker his back story and makes him a more sympathetic creature than any of the other iterations. Yes, he’s still in Transylvania and he’s been known to impale a lot of folks, but it’s not that he’s inherently blood thirsty. He has a really good reason for acting the way he does and Dracula Untold gives you a ringside seat to this good guy gone bad story. This Dracula is no Edward or Jacob or even Tom Cruise Lestat. He’s a Game of Thrones hunk of a warrior with a big heart, but he’s given an impossible choice that changes his fate forever.
Prince Vlad (Luke Evans) is a dad and a loving husband and all is well in the kingdom, until the Sultan sends his messenger to demand 1000 boys for his army. And an added bonus is that he wants Vlad’s son, too. Apparently, Vlad was given up by his dad, too, when he was just a lad and was beaten and trained to be a bloodthirsty warrior, and where he got his nickname “The Impaler.” Not wanting that for his boy, he decides to fight the Turks, who have more troops than you can count. Earlier Vlad and some of his men stumbled on a cave full of skeletons, and an evil entity (Charles Dance) inside killed everyone except Vlad, so he goes back, knowing that it could be his only chance to have the great power he needs to save his kid and kingdom. The original vampire who needs to turn someone to break the curse that keeps him stuck in the cave makes Vlad drink some blood which gives him all kinds of vampirely powers, though that sunlight thing is still a problem. And he is warned if he feeds within three days, he will be a vampire forever. But our hero figures he can hold out and win the battle in three days and all will be well. Of course things don’t exactly go as planned.
Dracula Untold is not a great movie. It is a lot of CGI and fight scenes. And it feels like a mash-up of a lot of other warrior, monster, romance flicks. But the lead is very easy on the eyes, and it is entertaining while you watch. You’re not going to go home and puzzle on it, though I am looking forward to the sequel they tease at the end. It is a good chicks and roosters kind of flick. Games of Thrones/Lord of the Rings vibe for the guys and a sweet love story at the center.