Bat- man begins
Release Date: OUT NOW!
15 | 92 minutes Director: Gary Shore Cast: Luke Evans, Dominic Cooper, Charles Dance, Sarah Gadon, Art Parkinson
In most Dracula stories, the Count is the baddie. He sleeps in a coffin, can’t look in mirrors, and oh yeah, he murders people by drinking their blood. So this story – which paints Dracula as a romantic hero – may not have been told before, but there’s a good reason for that: it doesn’t really make any sense.
Using the first ten minutes of Coppola’s Dracula and the life of the real Vlad Tepes as the basis for its action, Dracula Untold starts in the 1460s, when Prince Vlad has managed to put his impaling days behind him to settle down in a nice castle with his wife and kids. But the Ottoman Empire is calling for war, and without an army to defend his kingdom, Vlad’s only hope is a creepy cave- dwelling bloodsucker.
Unfortunately, the idea of turning to a vampire to solve your diplomacy problems is one of the least implausible plot elements in this film. Marching to war blindfolded? Sure. A three- day returns policy on damnation? Well, if a flock of bats can take out an army, anything ’s possible. By the time Dracula’s fighting the villainous Sultan Mehmed II ( Dominic Cooper) in a booby- trapped tent, you’ll have stopped trying to make sense of it all. It’s just a shame it doesn’t have enough humour to be fun.
Maybe Dracula will never again be as effective a villain as he was in Bram Stoker’s day, but this alternate version is just a rubbish superhero – one who’s going to be really annoyed when he finds out someone else has already claimed the “Batman” name. Sarah Dobbs
“Tepes” means “the impaler”; “Dracula” means “son of the dragon” or “son of the devil”. Affectionate nicknames, then.
At least he doesn’t sparkle.