Dracula 2001 (2000)
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DVD
Buena Vista (UK). Region 2 PAL. 2.35:1 (16:9 enhanced). English DD 5.1, Italian DD 5.1. English, English (FHI) Subtitles. 95 minutes
The Movie
Credits
Director: Patrick Lussier
Starring: Jonny Lee Miller, Justine Wadell, Gerard Butler, Jeri Ryan, Jennifer Esposito, Christopher Plummer
Screenplay: Joel Soisson
Tagline: The most seductive evil of all time has just been unleashed in ours.
Country: USA
AKA: Dracula 2000; Wes Craven Presents: Dracula 2000
Jonny Lee Miller, Jeri Ryan, Justine Waddell, Gerard Butler, Omar Epps and Jennifer Esposito star in director Patrick Lussier's execrable Dracula 2001.

Originally entitled Dracula 2000, for the millennium, this anemic version of the classic Gothic horror tale adds nothing at all to horrormoviedom. Count Dracula (Butler) is unleashed upon the modern world by a group of ill prepared thieves, who foolishly break into his underground vault. Free to wander the Earth, Dracula heads for New Orleans to hunt down virginal beauty Mary Heller (Waddell), with whom he shares an obvious bond. But he is not alone, an ageing Van Helsing (Plummer) is wise to the count's plans and gives chase, pursues a spoilt brat Count from London to New Orleans in order to rescue his daughter from the family's nemesis bloodsucker.

With a few well-placed gags and a sense of its own absurdity, Dracula 2001 could have been one of the year's most uproarious comedies, but instead this atrocious rubbish treats the material with such gravity and takes itself so seriously that the result is an appalling, boring 'sucky' mess that isn't even worth the time cooking up the accompanying popcorn. Butler, his 'new wave curly hairstyle' resembling more a pouting 70's Disco freak than the 'Prince of Darkness' is an insipid Dracula, Plummer looks as if he wonders what the heck he is doing in such appallingly acted, dismally penned and incompetently directed garbage.

Interesting to note that when released theatrically in the US as Dracula 2000, moviegoers avoided Dracula 2001 like the plague - the only screams heard being from other cinema-goers fleeing from the theatre, demanding their money back.
Video
As is always the way, the worst films seem to get the best transfers. Dracula 2001 is presented in an anamorphic widescreen transfer, correctly framed at the theatrical 2.35:1 aspect ratio. Colours are striking and well saturated, the high level of detail impressive and fleshtones reproduced perfectly. Dracula 2001 is a dark film and the blacks are appropriately deep, shadow delineation excellent and apart from some edge enhancement is a transfer that touches reference quality.
Audio
Dracula 2001 is also possessed of an excellent English Dolby Digital 5.1 track. Dynamic range and frequency is excellent, surround use aggressive with terrific directional effects and the LFE is well-employed throughout the film. Dialogue is clear, crisp and technically intelligible, if intellectually inarticulate. An impressive mix incorporating English Closed Captions.
Extra Features
The R2 disc of this boasts plentiful extras including deleted/extended scenes and commentary... I must be honest and say I've been unable to sit through the screen-specific audio commentary with director Patrick Lussier and screenwriter Joel Soisson, as I cannot bear the thought of watching this tripe again. I am given to understand that it is mildly interesting at best and that Lussier and Soisson aren't aware of exactly how bad the movie is. Other supplements are equally unbearable in that they keep one in the company of the movie for longer than is necessary, but here goes anyway. There are several extended scenes, alternate opening, plus four additional deleted scenes accessible separately or together and offering an option to listen to commentary with Lussier and Soisson. The film is so dire that the temptation is to skip this one, too. Also included is a nine-minute behind the scenes featurette, typical promo fluff mixing effects footage and talking heads. We get eight selectable storyboards and a section entitled auditions with videotaped audition screen tests for Gerard Butler, Justine Waddell and Colleen Ann Fitzpatrick. The Theatrical Trailer, the only good thing about this film and what fooled me into acquiring it, is presented in a fullscreen version. I think the Region 1 disc of this also offered a 'Sneak Peeks' section from the main menu that offered seven more previews in fullscreen for The Crow, Scream and From Dusk Till Dawn DVD box sets and the films Reindeer Games, The Faculty, Immortality and Double Trouble. I'm not sure if they're here as I simply cannot stand being in the company of this movie any more.
The Verdict
Avoid. It has no redeeming qualities and no enjoyable moments.
Movie Score
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