It's almost impossible to imagine Francis Ford Coppola's extravagantly bonkers adaptation of Dracula getting made today. It's just too out there. Which means, of course, that it's a cult classic.
From the use of 1920s-style practical special effects and lush costuming through to its histrionic acting and direction, it delivers a startlingly vivid evocation of the Gothic style and setting of Stoker's novel. This will alienate some, but you have to admire the purity of Coppola's vision. And it's never less than huge fun.
Picture: Bram Stoker's Dracula has been digitally scanned at 4K from an original 35mm negative. The results look quite different to the smooth, ultra-polished look associated with the digital sources used for more recent film releases. This sets the film in its time, and feels like an authentic capture of the grain you inevitably get with celluloid negatives.
What's more, the 4K Blu-ray's application of HDR and a wider colour gamut works wonders on the gorgeous sets, costumes and make up, enhancing its Gothic credentials and giving it a welcome new lease of life for modern audiences.
Picture rating: 4/5
Audio: The film's 4K visuals are partnered with the same Atmos remix created for 2015's (US-only) Supreme Cinema Blu-ray release. Sadly, the accompanying UK 1080p BD doesn't feature the track.
While some purists may bristle at the original Dolby Digital source being tinkered with, the results are actually excellent. The sound's scale is ramped up dramatically, which feels perfectly appropriate to the film's histrionic tone. Wojciech Kilar's terrific score is fantastically well mixed to take advantage of Atmos's height layer, and while effects steering has been enhanced, it's never showy.
Audio rating: 5/5
Extras: The extras are all found on the Full HD Blu-ray, and add up to a comprehensive package. The highlights are two commentary tracks (one by Coppola alone, one by Coppola, effects supervisor Roman Coppola, and make-up artist Greg Cannom) that add tons of fascinating background.
A series of substantial interview features and mini-documentaries give further insight to the creative process, and give us a reminder of why we still love to buy our movies on disc...
Extras rating: 4/5
We say: The enjoyably batty horror flim receives a a worthwhile 4K revamp
Bram Stoker’s Dracula: 25th Anniversary, Sony Pictures, Ultra HD Blu-ray & All-region BD, £30
HCC VERDICT: 4/5
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