Sunday, March 22, 2015

Honourable Mention: Christmas at Draculas: Montage

Christmas at Draculas is, at the time of publishing this article, a forthcoming comedy written and directed by Simon Mckeon. The film is a no-budget production and yet the comedy has certainly got my attention firstly through the trailer and also through the sneak peak I managed to get of the prelude.

The prelude is just over 6 minutes and cleverly has been done in the form of a black and white silent film, replete with intertitles. It essentially tells the story of Dracula’s downfall – Dracula is played, in this, by Conor Dwane (and I’ll come to him in a minute).

witnessing purity
The idea is that for centuries Dracula was evil personified, terrorising mortals until he happened to look into the soul of Mina Harker (Mary Pappin). The scene where he looks deep into her eyes and sees this was reminiscent of Nosferatu and the idea that a woman with a pure heart would be the undoing of the vampire.

Conor Dwane as Dracula
Unable to attack her, Dracula ends up watching her, Jonathon (Colin Patrick Kelleher) and their daughter through the years. As he leaves Mina’s grave the montage seeps into colour for a brief moment. My understanding is that the full film sees Dracula at rock bottom and throwing a Christmas party for the various monsters and ghouls – so is pretty much a monster mash.

Now I said I’d come to Connor Dwane and I am struck by how much, at times, he reminded me of the great Bela Lugosi. Indeed the scene at the grave actually made me recall the test footage that Ed Wood shot of Bela, just before his death, for Plan 9 From Outer Space (though those shots are actually very different). What the prelude doesn’t offer you, being silent, is his vocal performance – but the trailer (at the foot of this article) offers a very good Lugosi-esque voice and delivery.

a mob
I have been asked to mention that the film will premiere 21st April 2015 at a special charity event for Saint Vincent DePaul UCC at University College Cork. Keep an eye on the film’s Facebook Page for more information.

The imdb page for the full film is here.

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