Writer: Steven Katz (Screenplay)
Starring: John Malkovich, Willem Dafoe, Udo Kier, Cary Elwes, Catherine McCormack, Eddie Izzard, Aden Gillett, Nicholas Elliott
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: Very Clever Horror Drama
Story: Shadow of the Vampire starts as we see director Friedrich Wilhelm Munrau (Malkovich) who is looking to bring his version of Dracula, Nosferatu due to legal reasons. He moves his film from the set to location where Max Schreck (Dafoe) will be joining them with what is considered an extreme method acting style.
Max only appears in character and remains isolated at all times from the rest of the cast giving the terrifying look needed for the role of the vampire. When it appears that Max might be taking things too far the crew start to question whether he is really a vampire or just that good of an actor.
Shadow of the Vampire gives us a look at a behind the scenes theories to one of the greatest horror movies ever made. We know that people believe that certain things have happened on set and that the real Max Schreck was shocking when first witnessed. This film gives us a story to decide what we think of the idea that Max was a vampire being used to make the ultimate film
John Malkovich: Friedrich Wilhelm Munrau is the brilliant respected German movie director whose latest work is Nosferatu the closest legal story to Dracula. He has the backing of the studio to take chances that other directors couldn’t including shooting on set. We see how far he will go for this film as he knows Max’s true nature. John is great in this role where we see just how far he will go.
Willem Dafoe: Max Schreck is the actor that gets hired by Friedrich for the role of the vampire, he is keeping within the character from the first moment of the film to the final but it soon becomes clear that he might in fact be a vampire. Willem gives the best performance of his career where he is nearly unrecognizable.
Udo Kier: Albin Grau is the producer for the film that first questions the ideas that are being used before finally seeing the good side of the film happening. Udo is good in this role giving what feels like a real producer performance.
Cary Elwes: Fritz Arno Wagner is the newest cameraman bought into the shoot after the first one gets injured. He is out different to the first being louder and more worldly in his ideas. Cary is good in the supporting role.
Support Cast: Shadow of the Vampire has a small but key supporting cast that all are members of the film either behind the cameras of fellow actors. Each member does a good job in their roles.
Director Review: E. Elias Merhige – The director gives us a film that is really one of the more interesting ones that seems to have gone under the radar.
Horror: Shadow of the Vampire gives us a horror that shows what it could be real events behind one of the greatest.
Settings: Shadow of the Vampire puts us in the settings that make us feel like we are part of the film crew.
Special Effects: Shadow of the Vampire has great effects with most being with the creation Max looks.
Suggestion: Shadow of the Vampire is one I think people should really give a go, it is very interesting concept. (Give it a Go)
Best Part: Dafoe is amazing.
Worst Part: It does have slow moments.
Believability: It is all about what you want to believe.
Chances of Tears: No
Chances of Sequel: No
Post Credits Scene: No
Oscar Chances: Nominated for 2 Oscars including Best Supporting Actor for Willem Dafoe.
Budget: $8 Million
Runtime: 1 Hour 32 Minutes
Tagline: An Unspeakable Horror. A Creative Genius. Captured For Eternity.
Overall: Very interesting concept that we could see on many other films.