Netflix/BBC’s Three Part DRACULA Mini-series – in a word : SUMPTUOUS!

‘I knew the future would bring wonders.

I did not know it would make them ordinary.’

 

—Count Dracula in BBC’s DRACULA

 

The weight and simplicity and telling beauty and truth of that line, says everything about why this 3 part DRACULA mini-series is an early contender for not just best television of this very new year, but one of the most innovative takes of the much adapted one hundred and twenty three year old Bram Stoker creation… to come along in a long time.

Not since Coppola’s DRACULA has an adaptation been so lush, and sumptuously filmed.

And in no Adaptation, has that vision been taken so far down new and visionary paths.

 

‘Democracy is a tryranny of the uninformed.

Only in blood, do we find the truth.’

—Count Dracula in BBC’s DRACULA

 

Written by the team of Mark Gatiss and Steve Moffat that made SHERLOCK a world wide hit (which while I liked, and thought the actors… to include Cumberbatch and Freeman… were great, as a whole I felt the story quality meandered from season to season. For my money, the long running Granada Television series starring the late, great Jeremy Brett, is far and away, still the last, best word in screen Adaptations of Sherlock Holmes ), their DRACULA with this 3 episode mini-series is as a whole, superior and stunning.

It stumbles a little at the end, feeling too rushed, or too strange, or too something (I have to think on it some more, but on 1st watch  not sure they  really nailed that ending, feels a little trite that ending), but overall a very good mini-series. Brilliantly written from episode to episode, with the exception of that ending, and phenomenally performed by all the actors, but particularly  Claes Bang, who to my surprise with 50 credits to his name is a complete unknown to me, completely owns this production with his charming, bemused, savage and instantly iconic performance of the titular character.

Very seldom does an actor get a character this iconic, with script and direction and costars and production values to match. It is a star making turn.

The direction on each episode is stunning, and visually looks like the vision of a single director rather than 3 distinct directors, Paul McGuinan, Jonny Campbell, and Damon Thomas. The cohesiveness of the visuals must be credited to Tony Slater Ling cinematagrapher on the 1st and 3rd episodes, who sets the visual language for the series.

Just a highly beautiful, and textured and enjoyable mini-series.

Grade: A-/B+. Strongly Recommended!

 

Can’t wait to purchase the blu-ray of this series, hopefully in Steel-Book format!

View it yourself for free, on Netflix!

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