Take 3: Dracula (1931) Review + 180 Follower Thank You

Before I start the introduction of this review, I want to remind everyone that Thursday, February 13th, is the last day to cast vote in the first poll of the 2nd Annual Gold Sally Awards! The second poll will be posted on Valentine’s Day! Here is the link to the poll:

 

The First Poll of the 2nd Annual Gold Sally Awards has begun!

 

In the past two years, I have reviewed a Valentine’s themed Hallmark movie on February 14th. But since this year’s polls for the Gold Sally Awards are taking place on Fridays and because Hallmark has chosen not to air a new Valentine’s themed movie on Valentine’s Day, I decided to do something different in 2020. Five days ago, 18 Cinema Lane received 180 followers! For this review, I chose to talk about Dracula for three reasons. 1. This movie was released in February of 1931. 2. The movie premiered on Valentine’s Day. 3. Valentine’s Day is a time when we show appreciation to those who have helped us along the way. My followers have definitely done that during my two years of blogging. With that, I have dedicated this special blog follower dedication review to all my followers in honor of Valentine’s Day! As I discuss this film, I realize Dracula is the fifth vampire movie I’ve reviewed on my blog! Who knew that vampires in cinema would be a recurring topic at 18 Cinema Lane?

Dracula 1931 poster
Dracula (1931) poster image created by Universal Pictures. Image found at en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Dracula _-_1931_theatrical_poster.jpg

Things I liked about the film:

The acting: For years, I have heard great things about Bela Lugosi as an actor. Even though this is the first film of Bela’s I have seen, I can understand why people give him this amount of praise! His portrayal of Dracula was commanding and captivating, effortlessly directing the audience’s attention towards him. Bela was very expressive through his facial expressions and body language. But the emotions in his eyes are what elevated his performance! Great examples of this are whenever Dracula appeared in front of his victims. Another expressive performance came from Dwight Frye! The character of Renfield was executed really well because of the versatility of Dwight’s acting abilities. Before and during his stay at Dracula’s castle, his demeanor was calm and collected. After becoming Dracula’s victim, his persona changes to being paranoid and on-edge. I was also impressed with Helen Chandler’s portrayal of Mina! Her on-screen personality was likable and sweet. Similar to Bela Lugosi, her eyes provided the emotion for her performance. A great example is when Mina is looking intently at her fiancé toward the end of the film.

 

The set design: I really liked seeing the overall set design in Dracula! It was constructed really well and fit the world the film’s creative team was trying to bring to life. Dracula’s castle and the Abbey in London were the two best locations in this movie! These places were grand in scale and felt larger than life. For Dracula’s castle, elements like spiderwebs and trees growing through broken windows created an unsettling environment. In the Abbey, a large, winding staircase was impressively captured on film. The locations in this movie were grandiose and had a sense of style to them!

 

The lighting: The way that lighting was used in this film was very interesting! Even though parts of the movie took place at nighttime, enough lighting was used to show what was taking place on screen. The times when Dracula is waking up from his coffin are good examples. Another creative way that lighting was used was anytime Dracula approached his victims. His eyes are the only things captured by the light, highlighting one of Bela’s best qualities as an actor. It also indicates how intense the power of his eyes is on humans. The lighting in Dracula helped make the project visually appealing!

Dracula Lobby Card
Dracula (1931) lobby card image created by Universal Pictures. Image found at http://www.tcm.com/tcmdb/title/73563/Dracula/#.

What I didn’t like about the film:

Limited amount of music: The power of music can be very influential when it comes to film. Music can be used to set a tone for a particular scene or enhance the events happening on screen. In Dracula, however, music was used sparingly. Only two scenes and the opening credits is where music could be heard. The rest of the movie is music-free. Had there been orchestral music during moments when Dracula is in the presence of his victims, it would have brought a certain intensity toward those moments. It also would have highlighted the fear that can come from such an event. Sadly, music in this project felt underutilized.

 

Treading on familiar territory: It has been said that Nosferatu is the story of Dracula. But because of copyright laws at the time of the film’s creation, direct references to Dracula had to be removed. While watching the 1931 version of Dracula, I could tell that certain patterns in story-telling mirrored the 1922 silent film. In fact, certain events almost followed the predecessor beat-by-beat. Since I saw Nosferatu prior to seeing the 1931 picture, I feel like I knew what would happen, leaving little to no room for any surprises. While this movie did have some differences from the 1922 film, it wasn’t enough to create its own identity.

 

The run-time: Dracula is a one hour and fifteen-minute film. After Renfield meets Dracula in his castle, the movie kind of drags on, making it feel longer than its run-time suggests. Some moments felt like they were included to provide padding, such as the “woman in white” story. Personally, I think this film should have been less than an hour. This story is pretty straight-forward and has a recognizable character. If it were eighty or ninety minutes, the film could get straight to the point sooner.

217423-P10C89-771
Valentine’s Day rose image created by Freepik at freepik.com <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/flat-valentine-s-day-background_1618951.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a> <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/background”>Background vector created by Freepik</a> Image found at freepik.com

My overall impression:

Dracula is a film that I found to be decent. There are aspects within the project that I liked, such as Bela Lugosi’s performance. However, the script played it safe when it came to the story. The creative team behind the movie didn’t really take any chances or try to think outside the box. In the end, the final product failed to create its own identity from its predecessor, Nosferatu. What I can say about this film is if you’ve seen Nosferatu, you’ve already seen Dracula. Compared to the other vampire movies I’ve reviewed, this movie would be placed around the same range as Queen of the Damned. While I liked both films for what they were, I think they could have been stronger. Before I end this review, I’d like to thank my followers for helping 18 Cinema Lane get this far! This blog has thrived every day because of you!

 

Overall score: 7 out of 10

 

What you do think of this special blog follower dedication review? Are you looking forward to seeing what I review when I receive 185 followers? Let me know in the comment section!

 

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

What is the Net Worth of the Characters from the ‘Queen of the Damned’ film?

What is Lestat’s net worth?

This is a question that I asked when I saw Queen of the Damned for the first-time last year. I was curious how this particular character was able to afford his lavish lifestyle while balancing his endeavors as a rock-star. The more I thought about my question, the more I thought about the wealth of the other characters from this movie. How did they acquire their wealth? What is their net worth? Since I haven’t seen a post like this on WordPress before, I decided to write an editorial where I attempt to figure out these characters’ net worth. I’m not a historical or financial expert, so my information will be based on guesses and assumptions. I haven’t read any of the source material that Queen of the Damned is based on, so I turned to Vampire Chronicles Wiki only to determine birth dates and the years when these characters became vampires. However, I didn’t rely too much on this site because the film and the source material share more differences than similarities. To determine net worth, I looked at items from the auction website, Sotheby’s, that correlated with these significant years of the characters. All of the items’ prices will be included with its United States Dollar value. Because we don’t know the year when the film takes place, we will assume it takes place around Halloween of 2002, especially since Marius was seen reading a magazine where the back cover says “All Hallow’s Eve”. I also turned to Jen, from the blog, Bookworm, because she has read the books and seen the movie. This means that she would know these characters better than me. Here’s the link to Jen’s blog if you want to check it out!

https://bookwormjenblog.wordpress.com/

Gothic Horror Blogathon banner
The Dark and Deep: The Gothic Horror Blogathon banner created by Pale Writer from the blog, Pale Writer. Image found at https://palewriter2.home.blog/2019/08/03/dark-and-deep-the-gothic-horror-blogathon/.

This post is not only created for the Gothic Horror Blogathon, it also corelates with ‘31 Spooks of October’ and my recent achievement of publishing 125 movie reviews! Before we begin, I just want to let you know that this is probably the longest editorial I’ve ever written. Also, all of the pictures that are featured in this editorial are screenshots that I took with my cellphone.

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Here is photo evidence that the concert took place around Halloween. Screenshot taken by me, Sally Silverscreen.
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Khayman

In the Queen of the Damned film, Khayman is one of members of the Ancients group. According to Vampire Chronicles Wiki, Khayman was Akasha’s chief steward. But this detail was not brought up in the film, so we will assume that this was his occupation before he became a vampire. The reason for Khayman’s negative feelings toward Akasha is unknown in the movie, but it seems like she made a decision that did not sit well with Khayman. On Sothebys, I found three items that shared the date of or around 4,000 B.C.; the approximate date when Khayman was born and became a vampire. The first item, An Anatolian Figure, was sold in 2001 for $6,600. For the sake of this discussion, we will assume that if Khayman owned this item, the aforementioned price will be the worth of the item. Another item that sold in 2001 was a set of Three Stone Mace-heads. This set had a final price tag of $2,700, so this will the worth of the set for this conversation. The last item, an Egyptian Hardstone Jar, has an approximate worth somewhere between $8,000 and $12,000, so we’ll just say that it’s worth $12,000. If we add these prices up, it totals to $21,300. Remember when I mentioned that Khayman was Akasha’s chief steward? Well, let’s say that throughout his career, he received a third of her finances, which would be approximately $11,944. When we include that number with the prices of the previously stated items, Khayman’s net worth totals to the amount of $33,244.

Sources:

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2001/egyptian-classical-and-western-asiatic-antiquities-including-property-from-the-collection-of-the-late-marion-schuster-lausanne-n07742/lot.143.html?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2001/egyptian-classical-and-western-asiatic-antiquities-including-property-from-the-collection-of-the-late-marion-schuster-lausanne-n07742/lot.208.html?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2014/antiquities-n09163/lot.42.html?locale=en

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Akasha

Before starting this project, I had assumed that Akasha would be one of the film’s more wealthier vampires. But Jen, from Bookworm, brought up an excellent point that changed my perspective on Akasha’s net worth. Jen told me that Akasha wouldn’t have any money due to Marius taking care of her while she was in her semi-comatose, statuesque state. In the film, Akasha was seen in this state and stayed that way for the majority of the story. For this editorial, however, we’re going to assume that she was able to keep at least three possessions before she turned into a statue. The first possession would be an Egyptian Cosmetic Case, which sold for $1,693 in 2002. One year earlier, in 2001, a Stone Figure from the 6th Millennium sold for $19,150. An Egyptian Porphyritic Diorite Vase, which has a date of around the time when Akasha became a vampire, is worth $10,000 to $15,000. For this project, we will guess that this vase is worth $15,000. Adding up those numbers together, the total worth of these items would be $35,843. This means that this number represents Akasha’s total net worth.

 

For the first vampire ever created, this financial amount seems low. But, in the movie, Akasha spent more time in a semi-comatose, statuesque state than she did ruling over Egypt. Because she broke out of this state in 2002 after thousands of years, she probably wouldn’t be able to access the money she had as easily as the other vampires. In fact, she probably squatted the California house that she took Lestat to after taking him from his concert. Jen, from Bookworm, brought up another good point that puts Akasha’s financial situation into an interesting perspective. Even though, in the film, she doesn’t have any known family or children in existence, we would assume that she had a will. But if she did have a will, it wouldn’t be effective when she eventually died at the end of the film. Akasha traveled to Death Valley, California to take Lestat from his concert and she later died in Maharet’s house in the Sonoma area. As Jen told me, there’s a good chance that Akasha did not have any sort of legal U.S. citizenship, so any legal documents relating to finances would likely not be accounted for.

Sources:

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2002/david-sylvester-the-private-collection-l02959/lot.1.html?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2001/egyptian-classical-and-western-asiatic-antiquities-including-property-from-the-collection-of-the-late-marion-schuster-lausanne-n07742/lot.142.html?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2012/antiquities-n08871/lot.2.html?locale=en

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Mael

Not much is known about this particular character. Even in the movie, the only information that’s shared about him is that he’s an Ancient. But, according to Vampire Chronicles Wiki, Mael was born and became a vampire in 10 A.D. By taking a look at three items from this time period, we can guess his potential net worth. Two of these items are manuscripts. One of them is a Collection of Large Papyrus Documents, which has a worth of about $4,908 to $8,180. For this discussion, this collection will be worth $8,180. The other one, a Collection of Egyptian Papyrus Manuscripts, is worth $31,034 to $46,551. We’ll just say that if Mael owned this collection, it would have a worth of $46,551. The last item is a Roman Black-ware Miniature Amphora. For the sake of this project, let’s just say that this one item is worth $1,200. When these numbers are added up, Mael’s total net worth would be $55,931.

Sources:

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2009/western-manuscripts-l09741/lot.33.html?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2012/the-history-of-script-sixty-important-manuscript-leaves-from-the-schyen-collection/lot.1.html?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2004/the-estate-of-katharine-hepburn-n08004/lot.590.html?locale=en

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David

On the Vampire Chronicles Wiki website, it says that David was born in the 20th Century. Since his age is never mentioned in the movie, we are going to guess that David is 43 years old during the course of the film. The reason for choosing this age is because that’s how old Paul McGann, the actor who portrayed David, was in the year when the movie was released. As we can see in the film, David has a prominent position in a detective agency known as Talamasca. In fact, the Vampire Chronicles Wiki website clarifies his position is a “superior general”. Because salary was never brought up in the film, we’re going to assume that it would mirror the typical salary of an investigator. Since David’s standing in the Talamasca is pretty respectable, the assumption is that his salary is on the higher end of the spectrum. According to the website, SalaryList, this would be $189,592. Over his 43 years, David would probably have collected family heirlooms. For this project, we will highlight three items that could belong to him. The first item would be a Set of Danish Silver Dinner Plates. This collection is worth $12,000 to $18,000, so we’ll just say that the worth on the plates is $18,000. The next item is a Heriz Carpet, which has the exact same worth as the aforementioned dinner plates. Again, we’ll assume that this particular item is also worth $18,000. The final item is a Library Table, which has a worth of $20,000 to $30,000. Let’s make a guess that if David inherited this item, it would be worth $30,000. All of this means that David’s net worth is likely $255,592.

Sources:

https://www.sothebys.com/en/buy/auction/2019/style-furniture-silver-ceramics/a-set-of-sixteen-danish-silver-dinner-plates-no?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/buy/auction/2019/style-furniture-silver-ceramics/a-heriz-carpet-northwest-persia-early-20th-century?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/buy/auction/2019/style-furniture-silver-ceramics/a-louis-xiv-style-gilt-bronxe-mounted-and-brass?locale=en

https://www.salarylist.com/jobs/Investigator-Salary.htm

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Pandora

The Queen of the Damned movie reveals very little about Pandora. Even the Vampire Chronicles Wiki website doesn’t clearly state when she was born or when she became a vampire. After doing the necessary math based on what was written on the previously mentioned website, I assume that Pandora was born in 10 B.C. and that she became a vampire in 21 A.D. Though not mentioned in the film, the Vampire Chronicles Wiki website shares that her father was a Roman Senator, who happened to be wealthy. We’re going to assume that, after Pandora’s father died, she inherited $1,000,000. We’re also going to assume that she was able to hold on to some possessions she might have had before she became a vampire. One of these items would likely be a Conch Pearl Necklace. According to an article from Sotheby’s, “the Romans prized pearls as the ultimate status symbol”, so Pandora having pearls in her collection of heirlooms would make sense. This particular necklace has a worth of $305,784 to $407,712, so we’ll say that it’s worth the latter for this project. Speaking of jewelry, the next item would be a set of Lazuli, Beads, and Pendants from the 1st Millennium, when Pandora was born. This collection’s worth is between $3,000 and $5,000, so we’ll guess that it’s worth $5,000. The final item would be a Roman Marble Fragment, which has a worth of $19,288 to $32,147. In this discussion, we’ll just say that this item is worth $32,147. When we add these values, Pandora’s net worth ends up being $1,444,859.

Sources:

https://www.sothebys.com/en/articles/the-a-z-of-jewelry-c-is-for-conch-pearls?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2018/magnificent-jewels-and-jadeite-hk0790/lot.1582.html?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2001/egyptian-classical-and-western-asiatic-antiquities-including-property-from-the-collection-of-the-late-marion-schuster-lausanne-n07742/lot.317.html?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/buy/auction/2019/ancient-sculpture-and-works-of-art/a-roman-marble-relief-fragment-early-1st-century-a?locale=en

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Armand

As Pandora indicated in a deleted scene for the Queen of the Damned film, Armand was taken under Marius’ wing and became his vampire son. Because of this, there’s a chance that he would receive at least half of Marius’ net worth, which would be $3,959,059. Before becoming a member of Marius’ vampire family, Armand was born in 1480. After Armand was taken in by Marius, he became a vampire in 1497. Because we know very little about Armand’s biological family, we will guess that Armand was able to keep at least one item from them. This item, for the sake of this project, will be a Northern European Brass Pot. The brass pot is worth $2,000 to $3,000, so we’ll say that it’s worth $3,000.

 

In the film adaptation of Queen of the Damned’s predecessor, Interview with the Vampire, Armand owned the building where Theatre des Vampires, a group of performers who are also vampires, hosted shows. Armand was also the leader of this group. To determine the revenue that the theater possibly generated, I searched for theaters that had a similar date and location to Armand’s. The one I chose for this editorial is Théâtre de l’Ambigu-Comique, which, ironically, faced a similar fate to Armand’s theater. Before we talk about that, let’s go back to the discussion of revenue. In the 1800s, when Armand’s part of the story takes place, the cost of a theater ticket was around 30 cents. If there were 1,250 seats in Armand’s theater, the same number of seats that Théâtre de l’Ambigu-Comique had at one point, that means that the total sale of tickets for one show would be $375. If Armand’s theater hosted 36 shows throughout a single year, the total revenue would be $13,500. In the Interview with the Vampire film, Armand’s theater burns down and Armand becomes the only survivor of that situation. He even references this event in the aforementioned deleted scene. Because insurance has been around since the 2nd to 3rd millennia B.C. and because accident insurance existed in the 19th century, we’ll assume that Armand received an insurance settlement of $1,000,000. After all this is said, Armand’s net worth is revealed to be $4,975,559.

Sources:

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2016/schorsch-collection-n09466/lot.544.html?locale=en

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Th%C3%A9%C3%A2tre_de_l’Ambigu-Comique

https://www.answers.com/Q/How_much_did_it_cost_to_go_to_the_theatre_in_the_1800s

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Insurance

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Marius

When he makes his debut in the Queen of the Damned film, Marius tells Lestat that he’s “a noble by nature”. Since we don’t exactly know what he meant by this statement, we’ll just assume that he was a literal noble before he became a vampire. If this were the case, it would make sense. One of the benefits of being a noble is having access to at least one estate. Through Lestat’s journalistic flashbacks, we see that Marius has a very large home on a private island. This estate would likely be valuable. In fact, I looked toward another structure that was built around the time when Marius became a vampire; 10 A.D., in order to determine the house’s worth. This structure is ‘Pyramid of the Sun’ from Mexico. One of the materials that was used to build this pyramid was limestone, so we’re going to assume that this material was also used to build Marius’s island home. In an article from History Channel, limestone was used to cover the pyramid’s walls. Also, according to Sotheby’s, a Limestone Head is worth somewhere between $6,706 to $10,730. Because one side of the pyramid is 733.2 feet, we’re going to multiply this number with the higher end of the price spectrum of the Limestone Head, which equals $7,867,236. This is the value that we will put on Marius’s island home for the sake of this discussion.

 

Marius’s house is not the only thing he owns that would be worth a lot of money. One of these items is likely be a pair of Egyptian Glass Eye Inlays, which is worth $7,715 to $10,287. For this project, we will say that this pair is worth the latter amount. Throughout the movie, we see Marius as an artist, creating a few paintings at various moments. Because of his status as an Ancient, let’s just guess that Marius is the Michelangelo of the vampire world. One work of Michelangelo’s, “Profile of a Man” has a worth of $1,504 to $2,257. Let’s say that Marius sold ten paintings for $1,504 each. This means that he collected a total of $15,040. Remember when I talked about Akasha’s net worth? Well, when she and Lestat got “married”, that marriage was not made legitimate. This is because their marriage was based on “he said, she said”. In one of Lestat’s flashbacks, Marius explains that he keeps Akasha and her husband in their statuesque states in his house. After she died, it would make sense for Marius to receive Akasha’s net worth. So, overall, Marius’s net worth rounds out to $7,918,119.

Sources:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nobility

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2017/ancient-sculpture-and-works-of-art-l17261/lot.1.html?locale=en

https://www.history.com/topics/ancient-history/pyramids-in-latin-america

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyramid_of_the_Sun

https://www.sothebys.com/en/buy/auction/2019/ancient-sculpture-and-works-of-art/a-pair-of-egyptian-glass-eye-inlays-roman-period?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2013/galleria-portatile-ralph-holland-l13041/lot.234.html?locale=en

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Maharet

Another wealthy Ancient is Jesse’s aunt, Maharet. On the Vampire Chronicles Wiki website, she lived around the time of Akasha, becoming a vampire in 4,000 B.C. I found three items that share this date that we’re going to guess Maharet would own. The first item is a Porphyritic Diorite Vase that is similar to Akasha’s. Because I already talked about this vase’s worth, we’re going to restate that it’s worth $15,000. The next item is a Stone Figure, which is worth $15,000 to $25,000. For this article, we are going to say that it’s worth $25,000. The last item is a Basalt House Figure, which is worth six to nine thousand dollars. But because this item sold in 2001 for $19,150, let’s say that this is the worth of this figure.

 

The Queen of the Damned film never reveals how Maharet acquired her wealth. But the Vampire Chronicles Wiki website shares that she “could communicate with spirits”. I’m guessing that this is the equivalent to a “medium”. So let’s say, before she became a vampire, Maharet ran a business where she used her talents to help others. We’re going to assume that the price of these “communication sessions” cost a total of $10. If she conducted four of these sessions throughout a month, she would make $40. Now if she ran this business for a year, she would make $480. If she ran her business for 2,000 years, her total revenue would be $960,000. In the movie, the climax takes place at Marahet’s house, which is located in California. On realtor.com, there’s a listing for a house in a location and with a style similar to the one in the film. It’s listed at $6,700,000. If this was the worth of Maharet’s house, it would be included in her net worth of $7,719,150.

Sources:

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2012/antiquities-n08871/lot.2.html?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2015/antiquities-n09362/lot.65.html?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2001/egyptian-classical-and-western-asiatic-antiquities-including-property-from-the-collection-of-the-late-marion-schuster-lausanne-n07742/lot.144.html?locale=en

https://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-detail/4550-Grove-St_Sonoma_CA_95476_M19488-04353?view=qv

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Lestat

Shortly after meeting Marius for the first time, Lestat tells him that he’s the “lord of a great man”. Like what Marius said about being a “noble”, we’ll just assume that Lestat was being literal about being a lord. On the website, Prestige Property Group, I found two houses that look like a property that Lestat’s family could have owned. One of them has a price tag of $984,500 and the other one has a price tag of $2,267,100. For my editorial, we will guess that Lestat’s family home would be worth $3,251,600. Toward the beginning of the film, we see that Lestat has a run-down house in New Orleans, where his soon-to-be band mates are seen practicing. I found a listing for a house on realtor.com that could resemble the house in the film. In this listing, the New Orleans house is listed for $4,995,000. For the sake of this project, we will assume that this price is the worth of Lestat’s house. We’ll also assume that Lestat held on to three personal possessions from before he became a vampire. The first of these items is a Louis XV Giltwood Mirror, which is worth $3,000 to $5,000. We will say that this mirror has a worth of $5,000. A Louis XVI Tapestry is the next item, with an approximate worth of twelve to eighteen thousand dollars. In this discussion, we’ll just assume that the tapestry is worth $18,000. With a worth of $12,000 to $18,000, a George I Cabinet on Chest is the last item. Like I said about the tapestry, we’ll say that the worth of the cabinet is also $18,000. Because, in the film, Marius turned Lestat into a vampire, he could receive half of Marius’ net worth of $3,959,059.

 

One of the biggest factors of the Queen of the Damned film is Lestat being a rock star. This definitely plays into Lestat’s total net worth, even though he is a member of a five-person group. In the film, the band’s concert took place in Death Valley, California. The layout was different from that of a typical stadium, which sets separate prices based to where the seats are located. Also, this was the only concert that band was hosting, because Lestat didn’t want to repeat his performance. This means that tickets for this concert might have been very valuable. In an article from Princeton University, it was reported that “in 2001, the average concert ticket price was about $40, with the average high-end cost close to $60”. But because of what I just said about the aforementioned concert, we’re going to make a guess that the range of prices for this concert’s tickets were $50 and $100. Now, let’s say that 1,000 people attended the concert. Half of them bought the $50 tickets, while the other half purchased the $100. When we multiply the first half, we get a total of $25,000. The total of the other half would be $50,000. While the overall revenue would end up being $75,000, it’s important to figure out what Lestat’s piece of the pie would be. Not only do we see at least one music video from this band, we also see several pieces of advertising about the concert. Let’s say that some of the concert revenue went towards paying the music video’s filming team and covering the cost of marketing, which we’ll keep at 10% each. Divide this number with $75,000, this payment would be $7,500 each. This leaves the $60,000 to split between five people, which now means that Lestat would walk away with $12,000. If you think this is a low number, consider that Lestat’s band also made at least one CD. Based on an article from Electronic Musician, which reported in early 2002 that CD prices could be lowered to $9.99, we’ll assume that in the Queen of the Damned film, a typical CD costs $10. We’re also going to assume that a million copies of this CD were sold. When those numbers are multiplied, we get a total of $10,000,000. But remember, there’s five members in this band, so Lestat would end up receiving $2,000,000. After all of this information is accounted for, Lestat’s total net worth is likely $14,258,659.

Sources:

https://www.prestigeproperty.co.uk/10-bed-french-chateau-angouleme-charente-poitou-charentes-france-218951

https://www.prestigeproperty.co.uk/8-bed-french-chateau-bordeaux-gironde-aquitaine-france-219187

https://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-detail/2523-Prytania-St_New-Orleans_LA_70130_M84849-10031?view=qv

https://www.sothebys.com/en/buy/auction/2019/style-furniture-silver-ceramics/a-louis-xv-giltwood-mirror-mid-18th-century-2?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/buy/auction/2019/style-furniture-silver-ceramics/a-louis-xvi-allegorical-grotesque-tapestry?locale=en

https://www.sothebys.com/en/buy/auction/2019/style-furniture-silver-ceramics/a-george-i-mulberry-wood-and-walnut-cabinet-on?locale=en

https://www.princeton.edu/news/2002/09/24/economist-alan-krueger-examines-pricing-concert-tickets

https://www.emusician.com/gear/cd-retail-prices-drop-for-2002

20191029_223812[1]

 

Jesse

The Vampire Chronicles Wiki website says that in the Queen of the Damned movie, Jesse was “in her early twenties”. So, for the sake of this discussion, we’ll guess that Jesse was 25 years old. This was the age of Marguerite Moreau, the actress who portrays Jesse, in 2002, so this is why I have chosen this age for this project. As we can see in the movie, Jesse works for the same Talamasca that David is the superior general of. But, since her position is that of an “apprentice”, her salary would be on the lower end of the spectrum. Going back to the website, SalaryList, it would likely be $39,370. Remember, Jesse is Maharet’s niece, so it’s possible that she would receive half of her aunt’s net worth. This number would be $3,859,575. Receiving this money would have allowed her to live in London, travel to California, and attend Lestat’s concert. Speaking of Lestat, he was the one that turned her into a vampire toward the end of the movie. This means that she could have access to half of Lestat’s net worth, which is $5,149,800. While the exact state of the Lestat and Jesse’s relationship is unknown, it is assumed that they decided to pursue a romantic relationship at the end of the film. Jen, from Bookworm, told me that vampires do not marry, but it’s possible that Lestat and Jesse would have come up with a financial agreement if their relationship grew stronger. Overall, the grand total of Jesse’s net worth is going to be $9,048,745.

Source:

https://www.salarylist.com/jobs/Investigator-Salary.htm

 

 

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

Take 3: Vampyr Review + 145 Follower Thank You

For this blog follower dedication review, I decided to take a different approach when choosing the next film. Instead of the usual system that I apply to these posts, I chose a film that felt like an appropriate choice for ‘31 Spooks of October’, the event I’ve been participating in. Since K, the creator of this event and K at the Movies, wrote about vampire related short stories recently, I thought that reviewing Vampyr would be very fitting. Last week, I was nominated for the Liebster Award by the Brannan sisters from Pure Entertainment Preservation Society! In their article, they offered an invitation to their Third Annual Great Breening Blogathon. Because the purpose of this event is to promote the preservation of the Breen Code, I felt that I had an understanding of the kind of entry that the Brannan sisters were looking for, especially since I participated in “Clean Movie Month” and “A Month Without the Code”. Vampyr was released in 1932, so through this review, I will try to determine how the Breen Code could be applied to this film!

Vampyr poster
Vampyr poster created by Carl Theodor Dreyer-Filmproduktion, Tobis-Filmkunst, and Vereinigte Star-FilmGmbH. Image found at http://www.tcm.com/tcmdb/title/343956/Vampyr/#.

Things I liked about the film:

The cinematography: While watching Vampyr, I was very impressed by the cinematography! Because this movie was created in the early ‘30s, some of the visual tricks that the film’s creative team incorporated into their project felt like they were ahead of their time. Throughout the movie, there were shadows that were presented inside an abandoned warehouse and around the grounds of a hotel and a mansion. When the protagonist, Allan Gray, first sees these shadows, one of them is seen digging in reverse. This is something that audiences probably take for granted today, but was revolutionary back then.

 

The music: All of the music in this movie was orchestral, similar to silent films. It was used to effectively convey the mood of each scene. Whenever there was a part of the film that was suspenseful, eerie music could be heard. There was even sad music that was playing when a sad moment was presented on screen. This film’s music helped explain what was happening even when no dialogue was spoken. It became an integral part of this project.

 

Audio that could be heard: This film was styled and constructed like a silent film. But what’s different about Vampyr is that the orchestral music wasn’t the only audio that could be heard. Audible dialogue from the actors replaced title cards. Things like knocks on doors and ringing bells could be heard by the audience. At one part of the film, the sounds of a parrot were included with the visual presentation of the bird. In a film that was created in this specific way, hearing all these sounds was a pleasant surprise!

Third Annual Great Breening Blogathon banner
The Third Annual Great Breening Blogathon banner created by the Brannan sisters from Pure Entertainment Preservation Society. Image found at https://pureentertainmentpreservationsociety.wordpress.com/2019/09/19/announcing-the-third-annual-great-breening-blogathon/.

What I didn’t like about the film:

A limited presence of vampires: When a movie’s creative team assigns a particular title to their project, they make a promise to their audience about what they can expect from the movie. With Vampyr, the subject of vampires wasn’t brought up until thirty-four minutes into the film. The very first vampire was revealed in the second half of the movie. In this project, vampires don’t play as big of a role as I expected. This shows that the creative team didn’t exactly fulfill the promise that they had made.

 

A simplistic story: For a movie like Vampyr, a sense of mystery in the story is to be expected. However, this plot felt too straight-forward. While there was a little bit of mystery, it wasn’t enough to maintain a consistent level of intrigue. It felt like the script put more emphasis on explaining through visuals what was going on instead of letting the visuals present things as they are. One perfect example is when a book about vampires is given to Allan Gray, in an effort to tell him what’s about to happen. It caused the narrative to be more simplified than it needed to be.

 

Some confusion: During this film, there were times when it felt like some of the mystery was kept at an arm’s length from the audience. Even though these mysteries were solved, it took awhile for the answers to be presented. Throughout the film, there was one character that kept reappearing. The audience didn’t learn who this person was until after thirty minutes. This extended explanation caused some confusion to happen in the narrative.

176402-OWIP8M-64
Happy vampire image created by Freepik at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/several-vampires-ready-for-halloween_1317599.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/party”>Party vector created by Freepik</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

My overall impression:

Before I share my overall impression of Vampyr, I want to thank all of my followers for helping 18 Cinema Lane reach this milestone! Every success that happens here is because you gave this blog a chance! Speaking of chances, I’m glad I gave this film a chance! While it had its errors, I ended up liking it more than I expected. The creative team behind this project adopted story-telling elements that were creative and interesting. Before watching this film, I learned that Vampyr was restored through the incorporation of two different versions of the movie. In the opening credits, there were a lot of names listed, indicating who was involved in the restoration process. This raises a good point of how many people it takes to restore a film. It makes me appreciate the work that’s involved in a cinematic procedure like this. Because this movie was released in 1932, it means that it wasn’t approved by the Breen Code. If it had been created two years later, these are the things that would need to change in order to meet Breen Code standards:

 

  • During the film’s introduction, it was said that the main character, Allan Gray, studies the subjects of “devil worship and vampires”. While the story does contain vampires, the first part of that statement would need to be rewritten.

 

  • When the subject of vampires is being explained, there were several references to “The Dark One”. Even though vampires are meant to be villainous in this film, any mentions of “The Dark One”, would need to be rewritten or omitted.

 

  • There were two times when God’s name was said in vain and one swear word was included in the script. New word choices would have to be made before production started.

 

  • In one scene, a pool of blood was shown on screen. This scene would have to be removed.

 

  • A few dead bodies can be seen on screen. These scenes should be rewritten, in order for the deaths to be implied.

 

Overall score: 7.6 out of 10

 

Have you seen Vampyr? Is there a film from the 1930s that you want me to see? Tell me in the comment section!

 

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

Take 3: Nosferatu Review (A Month Without the Code — #1)

Like last month, I will be participating in Pure Entertainment Preservation Society’s A Month Without the Code Blogathon! Unlike the Clean Movie Month Blogathon, the purpose of this month’s blogathon is to watch and talk about films that were released outside of the Breen Code era. That way, elements of the Breen Code can be applied to these films through discussion and analysis. For the very first review, I have chosen Nosferatu! It’s a film that I had definitely heard of, but had never seen. So far, I’ve had a good track record when it comes to the silent film genre. The Kid, Wild Oranges, and Sunnyside are films that I have seen and enjoyed. Also, I thought it would be interesting to apply the Breen Code to a film that was released before the Breen Code existed. It’s time to start this unfrightening and not-so-spooky review of 1922’s Nosferatu!

20190803_151228[1]
Like the poster for Les Enfants Terribles, I’ve seen other posters for Nosferatu. This one, however, is the one I like the most! Screenshot taken by me, Sally Silverscreen.
Things I liked about the film:

The acting: As I’ve said in my review of Wild Oranges, actors and actresses in silent films have to rely on body language, facial expressions, and actions/behaviors. The cast in Nosferatu used these acting elements to their full advantage, as if the “silent” part of silent films was never considered as a disadvantage. Both Gustav von Wangenheim and Greta Schroder, the actors who portrayed the characters of Hutter and Ellen, were very expressive! Their acting abilities helped the audience figure out what their characters were thinking and feeling. The two actors that stole the show, though, were Max Schreck and Alexander Granach! Even though their characters, Count Orlok/Nosferatu and Knock, are only on-screen for a limited time, they made the most of their on-screen presence. Both of these actors use their facial expressions to make their characters appear as creepy as possible. Because their acting abilities were that good, it made the portrayal of their characters appear believable!

 

The music: Similar to films like Sunnyside, the music in Nosferatu represented the tone of the overall film. This movie is classified as a horror movie, so the music during frightening scenes was tense and suspenseful. For less scary moments, the music was calmer and gentler. While Hutter visits an inn on his trip to Count Orlok’s castle, the music is light-hearted. This shows what Hutter is feeling, which is excitement toward his journey. When he shares his destination with the innkeeper, every patron in the inn becomes scared. At this moment, the music quickly changes to sound more mysterious and eerie. The fact that the music was always on-point with what was happening on-screen helped make the movie-viewing experience that much more engaging!

 

The on-screen chemistry: Even though their relationship wasn’t featured on-screen for very long, I liked seeing the on-screen chemistry between Gustav von Wangenheim and Greta Schroder! Anytime Hutter and Ellen interacted with each other, it was apparent that these characters truly cared about one another. As I already said, Gustav and Greta’s performances were very expressive. This not only helped make their portrayals endearing, but also help the audience stay invested in Hutter and Ellen’s relationship. This part of the story was a good way to balance out the scariness of Count Orlok/Nosferatu’s character. It was just one way of providing enough light-hearted moments to not frighten the audience too much.

176402-OWIP8M-64
Happy vampire image created by Freepik at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/several-vampires-ready-for-halloween_1317599.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/party”>Party vector created by Freepik</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

What I didn’t like about the film:

Nosferatu’s limited presence: Before I watched this film, I had assumed that Count Orlok/Nosferatu would have a significantly large presence on-screen. Unfortunately, he was only featured in a handful of scenes. I also thought that most of the plot would revolve around Count Orlok/Nosferatu, especially since the movie is titled Nosferatu. However, the plot was about the fear associated with this character. While Count Orlok/Nosferatu was not an afterthought, it felt like the movie was about everything but him. This character ended up serving the plot very sparingly.

 

Not so subtle dialogue: Because Nosferatu is a “silent film”, the film’s dialogue is featured on title cards and shots that look like the audience is reading a page from a book. But this dialogue didn’t want to hide the fact that there was a vampire in the movie. Toward the beginning of the film, Knock, Hutter’s boss, tells him that in order to sell a house to Count Orlok, it would require a little bit of blood. When Count Orlok sees a picture of Hutter’s wife, Ellen, he says that she has a nice-looking neck. These are just two examples of how this dialogue was not so subtle about who Count Orlok really was. This happened so frequently, that I felt annoyed by it.

 

Contradicting logic: In, at least, two instances, there were times when logic in Nosferatu was contradicted. One example is when Count Orlok tells Hutter that he only sleeps during the day, which causes people to think that he doesn’t exist. But, when he boards a ship on his way to Wisborg, Count Orlok/Nosferatu walks around the ship’s deck in broad daylight. In a shot that was sharing the film’s plot, it was revealed that the people of Wisborg were afraid to leave their homes because they were unaware of who was affected by the “plague”. When they accused Knock of infecting the town with the “plague”, these same townspeople were chasing Knock throughout the town and a neighboring field. Moments like these made the story seem like it wasn’t as strong as it could have been.

A Month Without the Code banner
A Month Without the Code Blogathon banner created by Tiffany and Rebekah Brannan from Pure Entertainment Preservation Society. Image found at https://pureentertainmentpreservationsociety.wordpress.com/2019/07/31/announcing-amonthwithoutthecode65/.

My overall impression:

After watching Nosferatu, I can see that this year’s A Month Without the Code is off to a good start! I have been lucky when it comes to the silent film genre, as I enjoyed every film I’ve seen and/or reviewed so far! Nosferatu has such a rich story, making for an interesting and engaging movie. The stories of how this project was made and restored are also fascinating. It makes me thankful that someone went out of their way to preserve this piece of cinema and save it from obscurity. If this film was created during the Breen Code era, it would be very different. For one thing, it would not be a silent film, as movies released between 1934 to 1954 had audio where cast members could be heard. From the perspective of content, there are a few things that would need to change. These things are the following:

 

  • The references to blood would need to be reduced. Since one of the characters in Nosferatu is a vampire, talking about blood makes sense. But, because mentions of bodily functions are looked down on, blood would have to be talked about at a minimum.

 

  • There are two shots in this movie that could be seen as disturbing: one shows a Venus Fly Trap eating a fly and one shows a spider eating its prey. These scenes would have to be removed.

 

  • On two separate occasions, a dead body is shown on-screen. These images would have to be removed and the on-screen deaths would need to be implied either through dialogue or clever visuals.

 

 

Overall score: 7.5 out of 10

 

 

Have you seen Nosferatu? What is your favorite movie featuring vampires? Share your thoughts in the comment section!

 

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

Take 3: Queen of the Damned Review (Halloween Double Feature Part 2)

Happy Halloween! Just to let you know, there will be spoilers in this review.  If you want to read this Double Feature’s introduction, visit this link:

My Halloween Double Feature: An Introduction

Queen of the Damned poster
Queen of the Damned poster created by Warner Bros. Pictures. Image found at https://www.warnerbros.com/queen-damned
  1. In your introduction for this double feature, you mentioned that both Queen of the Damned and The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire were released in 2002. Can you think of anything from around that time period that could have influenced the creation of this film?

I think there are three things that influenced the creation of Queen of the Damned. The first is the character of Malcolm from Jurassic Park. As I mentioned in my Jurassic Park review, Malcolm is a rock-star-esque mathematician. However, Malcolm appeared to be a likable character. In Queen of the Damned, Lestat was a rock-star-esque vampire. Despite these characteristics, Lestat, for the most part, comes across as a likable character. The second thing is the 1998 film, Blade. I’ve never seen this movie, but I know that it’s a darker and more violent comic book film that, to a certain extent, discusses the subject of vampires. Because this film was successful enough to receive a sequel (that was, ironically, released exactly a month after Queen of the Damned), I’m speculating that Blade inspired the creative team behind Queen of the Damned to make their movie darker and more violent than their predecessor, Interview with the Vampire. The third and final thing is, interestingly, Interview with the Vampire. I’ve never seen this film either, but based on this film’s trailer, it appears to be a gothic film in the old-school sense. Queen of the Damned focuses on the new-school/modern gothic style, which is very different from the first film. Most movie series try to do something different with each new film, so I think this film’s approach was rather creative.

 

2. Were you able to follow along with the story and understand what was going on in the film despite not having read the source material?

For the most part, yes. I did some research about this film before I saw it, so I was aware of certain aspects of the film that some casual movie-viewers might not understand. For instance, in the film’s climax, there are various characters that are introduced. One of these characters is Pandora. If I didn’t know that she is a character from a spin-off book series that Anne Rice wrote, I would have no idea who Pandora was in this film.

 

3. Were your pre-movie questions answered?

Well, two out of my three pre-movie questions were answered. The only question that wasn’t answered was how Lestat survived being burned in the previous film. Honestly, I wasn’t as bothered by this as I thought I would be. Because this movie focused more on Lestat’s present and origin story, re-capping the first film would have felt like Queen of the Damned had too much content.

As for the two questions that did get answered, the reason why Lestat appeared like he was trying to pursue a romantic relationship with Akasha is because, in the movie, Akasha kidnapped Lestat and forced him to in be in relationship with her. Speaking of Akasha, she did reveal that the reason why she loved Lestat was because he reminded her of her deceased husband. As for Jesse, it appeared, in the movie, like she truly loved Lestat. Because she’s a vampire scholar, Jesse wasn’t as fazed by the vampire aspects of Lestat’s world. Also, because her aunt is a vampire, it seemed like Jesse truly appreciated the subject of vampires and the world surrounding them.

 

4. Were you right or wrong in your pre-movie prediction?

I guess I was kind of right in my pre-movie prediction {shrugs with a confused look on my face}. While Lestat was forced into a relationship with Akasha and Jesse wasn’t aware of this until the climax of the film, there is a moment during the film’s climax where Lestat pretends to drink more of Akasha’s blood then he should have. This allowed the other vampires present in that scene to defeat Akasha.

 

5. In this double feature’s introduction, when you talked about your reason for choosing to review Queen of the Damned, you said that the movie clips featured in the MsMojo video, ‘Top 10 Movies Based on Books That Need a Do-Over’, appeared bonkers to you. Was this movie bonkers or do you think these movie clips were taken out of context?

I definitely think these movie clips were taken out of context. To me, Queen of the Damned was not as bonkers as the clips within this video made it seem. The only thing I found bonkers in this movie was Lestat and Akasha’s “relationship” because of how problematic it was.

Old castle in the mountians.
Castle photo created by Photoangel at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-photo/old-castle-in-the-mountians_1286237.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/tree”>Tree image created by Photoangel – Freepik.com</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

6. In a post from The Blog Complainer titled “How To Make A Good Movie Sequel”, there were several steps listed as if the article were a how-to for making sequels that are good. When a sequel successfully followed these steps, it means they passed the “Good Movie Sequel School for Dummies”. Because Queen of the Damned is a sequel, do you think it passed this school?

Well, yes and no. On the one hand, Queen of the Damned is based on two books from The Vampire Chronicles series. On the other hand, some stories were explored more than others because of this choice. Also, there were no references to Interview with the Vampire besides Lestat being a protagonist in the sequel. Lestat also had different characteristics than he did in the first movie, such as being less self-centered. However, the creative team behind this movie tried to do something different from the first movie. Lestat’s backstory was further explored and there were new characters that were introduced. If Queen of the Damned were enrolled in the “Good Movie Sequel School for Dummies”, it would probably receive a grade of somewhere between a B to C+.

 

7.  Did you acquire any new thoughts and/or questions while watching this film?

Yes, lots! Because this post is already long, I will only list a few of these questions and thoughts.

  • What is Lestat’s net worth?

 

  • Why is there a small amount of security at Lestat’s concert? Since his band was aware of Lestat encouraging other vampires to show up at his concert to try and hurt him, wouldn’t they want to have more security at the concert?

 

  • Why would Jesse and Lestat return Lestat’s journal to David? It’s Lestat’s journal, so why wouldn’t he want to keep it?

 

  • How did Akasha know about Marius and Lestat’s conversation about Lestat needing a companion? Shortly after she kidnaps Lestat, Akasha tells him that she wants to grant his wish of a companion. However, Akasha was not a part of that conversation nor did anyone tell her about that conversation.

 

As I’ve already mentioned, I think that Lestat and Akasha’s “relationship” was problematic. The reason why I put the word relationship in quotations is because Lestat and Akasha were not together for a long period of time and their relationship didn’t develop over a significant amount of time. The way I would describe this “relationship” is with an analogy: the “relationship” is a car and Akasha is driving it. All Lestat is able to do sit in the passenger seat and take orders from Akasha. Honestly, I think this “relationship” is one of the most problematic relationships I’ve ever seen in a movie.

 

I really liked the sets and scenery in this film! For the most part, it made the environments in the movie feel inviting and appealing. I also thought the acting was really good! Everyone portrayed their characters so well and all of the performances were memorable. Something that I didn’t like in this film was most of the music. While I liked the violin music and the music that played during Akasha’s demise, I was not a fan of the goth rock music. When Lestat sang at his concert, he sounded unnecessarily angry. I would rather hear him play the violin than sing.

 

8. In Queen of the Damned, did anything stand out to you, whether for better or worse?

I liked the techniques in story-telling that were used in Queen of the Damned. There were several times when voice-overs from Jesse and Lestat were included to show the film’s story from their specific point-of-view. I think these voice-overs added depth to the story that we wouldn’t have gotten if they weren’t there. Most movies have one main plot and a few subplots. Queen of the Damned was told through several subplots that were all connected to Lestat in some way. I thought this was a very interesting approach to cinematic storytelling that I haven’t really seen before.

 

To me, the biggest flaw of Queen of the Damned is the run-time. This movie combines elements from two novels into one movie. However, the movie itself is one hour and forty-one minutes. Since the creative team knew they were going to incorporate so many story elements into their film, I think this movie either should have been a two-part over-arcing story (like Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows) or the run-time should have been longer. Because of this, some plots were explored more than others. For example, Lestat’s relationship with Akasha and Jesse seemed to move at a very quick pace, not giving these relationships enough time to develop and grow. I believe that any of my aforementioned solutions could have solved this issue.

 

9. According to the BMeTric charts in the Queen of the Damned Preview from Bad Movie Twins, it appears that interest in this film is rising. Why do you think that is?

Well, I think there’s two reasons for that. The first is negative reviews that the film has received. After hearing these reviews and seeing the 17% it has on Rotten Tomatoes, some people might choose to watch this movie out of curiosity, like I did. The second reason is Aaliyah’s involvement in the film. Some people might choose to watch this film as a way to respect her memory. Others may choose to watch this film because they want to learn more about who she was as a person and entertainer.

 

10. After watching Queen of the Damned, what is the one thing you can take away from this movie viewing experience?

While I think Queen of the Damned could have been a stronger film, I don’t think it’s as bad as some people have made it out to be. To me, this film is decent and I do think it has its merits. After watching this film, I started to notice a very sad pattern. I’ve only seen six vampire movies in my life, including Queen of the Damned. Out of those six, most of them feature at least one problematic relationship that is meant to be romantic. I can’t say if this is a norm in vampires movies or if this is just a pattern in the vampire movies I’ve seen. However, I was happy to see Lestat and Jesse pursue a romantic relationship with each other because, to me, they seemed like they truly loved and cared about each other. Their relationship also appeared to be a healthy one, where Lestat and Jesse loved one another for who they were and appreciated each other’s worlds.

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Happy vampire image created by Freepik at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/several-vampires-ready-for-halloween_1317599.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/party”>Party vector created by Freepik</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

 

If you to check out the blog posts I referenced, you can visit these links:

Queen of the Damned Preview

How To Make A Good Movie Sequel

Take 3: The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire Review (Halloween Double Feature Part 1)

Happy Halloween! Just to let you know, there will be spoilers in this review.  If you want to read this Double Feature’s introduction, visit this link:

My Halloween Double Feature: An Introduction

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A DVD of The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire. Screenshot taken by me, Sally Silverscreen.
  1. In your introduction for this double feature, you mentioned that both Queen of the Damned and The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire were released in 2002. Can you think of anything from around that time period that could have influenced the creation of this film?

When Hallmark Channel began in 2001, the network didn’t have a strong identity like they do today. Because The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire was released the year after Hallmark Channel’s start, the creative team behind this film seemed to have more creative freedom on this project than they would have if it were made in recent years. With this creative freedom, the film was able to explore themes that are normally not found in Hallmark movies, such as various belief systems and raising awareness for endangered species.

 

2. Were you able to follow along with the story and understand what was going on in the film despite not having read the source material?

Absolutely! The thing about The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire is it’s written in a way that made me feel like prior knowledge of the source material wasn’t necessary to enjoy this film. From what I know about the Sherlock Holmes character and series, the stories seem pretty straight-forward. The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire was, for the most part, isolated from the other movies in this particular series. This makes it a good movie to introduce someone to Sherlock Holmes, as the film doesn’t make you feel like you have to watch them in a certain order.

 

3. Was your pre-movie thought addressed?

Because there were no legitimate vampires in this movie, my pre-movie thought was not addressed. The closest thing to vampires in The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire were vampire bats.

 

4. Were you right or wrong in your pre-movie prediction?

I was so wrong in my pre-movie prediction {face palms embarrassedly}. As I mentioned in answer #3, there were no vampires in this movie.

 

5. Within your pre-movie thought for The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire, you talked about how a film’s title can act as a promise to a film’s audience. Do you think the title of this movie was deceiving or honest?

It’s actually a little bit of both. On the one hand, most of the characters truly believed there was a vampire on the loose. On the other hand, as I’ve been saying, there were no vampires in The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire. If anything, this film’s title bent the truth.

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Magnifying glass and fingerprint image created by Alvaro_Cabrera at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/loupe-over-a-fingerprint_853908.htm’>Designed by alvaro_cabrera</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/glass”>Glass vector created by Alvaro_cabrera – Freepik.com</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

6. Because The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire was released before the Hallmark Movies & Mysteries channel (formerly known as Hallmark Movie Channel) began, do you think there was anything within this film that could have influenced future films from Hallmark Movies & Mysteries?

I believe The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire was one of the movies that helped create the foundation that today’s Hallmark Movies & Mysteries films use in their stories. The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire is a murder mystery, which is the same type of mystery story that a lot of Hallmark Movies & Mysteries films choose to adopt. In terms of specifics, Watson and Holmes use autopsy reports to solve their respective mystery. This reminded me of how Jennifer Shannon, in the Garage Sale Mystery series, relies on Tramell’s autopsy reports to help her solve the case. What surprised me the most was that The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire takes place during the Christmas season. The only Hallmark Movies & Mysteries film that is set during Christmas is Murder She Baked: A Plum Pudding Mystery. I’m hoping Hallmark can have more of their mystery movies take place during Christmas, so that fans of the mystery series can solve mysteries year-round.

 

7. Did you acquire any new thoughts and/or questions while watching this film?

Yes I did! Here are a few of them:

  • As I mentioned in answer #1, the theme of various belief systems was explored. In The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire, every character believed in something. For instance, Sherlock Holmes believed in logic. It was interesting to see how these different belief systems correlated with each other to propel the story forward and help the characters solve the case. An example of this is how Holmes’ belief in logic and Dr. Chagas’ belief in knowledge and awareness of vampire bats were used together to not only prove Dr. Chagas’ innocence, but also to find the culprit.

 

  • As I also mentioned in answer #6, The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire took place during the Christmas season. While the Christmas theme, in this movie, did not have anywhere near as strong of a presence as in Hallmark’s Christmas movies today, I found this choice to be very interesting. When one thinks of what could be found in Christmas movies, the subject of vampires doesn’t normally come to mind. This shows that the concept of vampires can be incorporated into almost any type of movie in almost any time of year. This also shows how Hallmark thought outside-the-box when it comes to their Christmas movies.

 

  • There are very few Hallmark movies that feature characters with disabilities. Even fewer Hallmark movies feature protagonists or significant secondary characters who not only have a disability, but who also contribute to the film’s plot. In The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire, Sister Helen, one of the sisters who lived and worked at the church, is blind. However, she didn’t let her disability stop her from helping Sherlock Holmes find the guilty individual and continuing to carry out her congregation’s mission of sharing their faith with the community.

 

8. In The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire, did anything stand out to you, whether for better or worse?

For the better, I really think the camaraderie between Holmes and Watson was a highlight of this film. Matt Frewer’s and Kenneth Welsh’s performance was very natural and convincing, making their characters appear like they truly got along with each other. As I was watching this movie, I realized that this camaraderie is the foundation for all of Holmes’ interactions and relationships. If it was not for the believability of the camaraderie between Watson and Holmes, the other times where Holmes interacts with various characters would probably not feel believable either.

 

Now, for the worse, something that I felt was missing from this movie was humor. I’ve mentioned before on my blog that Hallmark incorporates humor into their mystery stories to give their audience a break from the darkness and sadness of the murder mystery. Since, in this movie, there were seldom moments of light-heartedness or humor, the audience isn’t able to take a break from the darkness of the murder mystery and the spookiness of the vampire theme. I don’t know if there is humor within Sherlock Holmes stories, but I’m pretty sure Hallmark could have added some light-hearted moments that would have be more in line with the tone and time period of a particular story like this.

 

9. When people talk about their favorite Hallmark movies or Hallmark movies that they like, no one mentions The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire. Why do you think the majority of Hallmark’s audience isn’t aware of this movie’s existence?

This movie is not available on Hallmark Movies Now and, as far as I know, it has never appeared on any of Hallmark’s networks. Because of this, Hallmark hasn’t given their audience an opportunity to see this film.

 

10. After watching The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire, what is the one thing you can take away from this movie viewing experience?

Well, for one thing, The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire is a different film from what is usually found on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries. This is because the movie is dialogue heavy, with few moments of suspense and action. However, I do this is a good movie. As I mentioned within this review, I think this movie is a good introduction to Sherlock Holmes. I also think this is a good introduction to mystery stories from Hallmark. In a time when Hallmark Movies & Mysteries is thriving with their mystery series, I believe it’s important for Hallmark fans to be given the chance to watch the films that helped these stories be what they are today. After I watched The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire, I gained an appreciation not only for Hallmark’s mystery movies, but also for the foundation that was set in place so these movies could be as entertaining and intriguing as possible.

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Happy vampire image created by Freepik at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/several-vampires-ready-for-halloween_1317599.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/party”>Party vector created by Freepik</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

My Halloween Double Feature: An Introduction

On October 12th, when I published my review of Without a Trace, receiving 35 followers was not the only achievement that I accomplished. That review became my 100th post on 18 Cinema Lane! Because this post came just weeks before Halloween, I decided to celebrate this accomplishment by coordinating a double feature in honor of the holiday! If you read my post about my Top 5 Dream Double Features at the Cinema, you might already know which two movies I would choose to review around this time of year. But, I’m still going to share with you what movies I picked, why I picked them, and I’ll elaborate on how I’ll set up both reviews.

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Scary movie screening image created by Freepik at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-photo/small-skeleton-with-popcorn-and-tv_1323292.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/background”>Background image created by Freepik</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

It all started when I came across the MsMojo video, ‘Top 10 Movies Based on Books That Need a Do-Over’. During this video, the announcer talked about the film, Queen of the Damned, with clips from the movie being shown while the announcer explained the film’s placement on the list. When I first watched this segment of the video, all I could do was ask myself, “What the heck did I just watch”? because of the video’s assortment of movie clips appearing bonkers to me. Since curiosity got the best of me, I researched this movie to see if it was truly as bad as the announcer made it seem in the video. While on the internet, I looked up about 20 bad/worst/disappointing movies and/or sequels lists to see where Queen of the Damned placed. To my surprise, Queen of the Damned only appeared on four of these 20 lists. Out of those four, Queen of the Damned never placed in any of the top spots. For example, on a list of the Top 10 Most Disappointing Movies of All Time, Queen of the Damned was listed at number 38. I even looked at a list of Golden Raspberry/Razzie nominees and I discovered that Queen of the Damned was never nominated. With my curiosity still present, I looked through the comment section of the MsMojo video and at blogs on WordPress to see what other movie viewers thought about the film. Although it appeared that few people were talking about Queen of the Damned, most of the responses that I came across were genuinely positive. Even though there were also negative responses about the movie, most of them that I found were about Queen of the Damned not being a good book-to-film adaptation. All of these positive responses inspired me to ask the following question:

 

When one watches a film purely as a film, not as an adaptation, can that film contain its own merit and entertainment value?

 

This question is what I’ll be attempting to answer during this special double feature. Since this is a double feature, you’re probably wondering what movie will be paired with Queen of the Damned. I happened to find it while I was putting together my list of the Top 10 Worst Hallmark Movies of All Time. When I was creating that list back in June, I realized there were a lot of Hallmark movies that I have never seen. The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire was one of them. While learning more about this movie, I discovered this film and Queen of the Damned share some similarities between each other. Not only do both films discuss the subject the vampires to a certain extent, they were also released in 2002 and are both considered non-canonical representations of their literary source material. Now that I’ve gotten this lengthy, but necessary, explanation out of the way, I’ll now talk about how these double feature reviews will be set up. Instead of my usual format for writing movie reviews (Introduction, Things I liked about the film, What I didn’t like about the film, My overall impression, Overall score), I will answer a list of ten questions that I have created. These questions will help in my attempt of answering this question, as well as help me think about these films more critically. As I mentioned in my review of Christine, I don’t review rated R films often. However, because I feel that by talking about Queen of the Damned, I have an opportunity to add something new to this particular cinematic conversation, so this movie will be an exception.

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Happy vampire image created by Freepik at freepik.com. <a href=’https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/several-vampires-ready-for-halloween_1317599.htm’>Designed by Freepik</a>. <a href=”https://www.freepik.com/free-photos-vectors/party”>Party vector created by Freepik</a>. Image found at freepik.com.

Before I finish this post, I will list some pre-movie thoughts, questions, and predictions. Each movie will get its own section and I will reference everything I talked about before the movie in my reviews. My pre-movie thoughts, questions, and predictions are the following:

 

The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire

Pre-movie thought: My biggest hope is that in The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire, there’s at least one character who’s a legitimate vampire. When it comes to movie titles, there are times when a film’s title can act as a promise to a film’s audience. For instance, when Marvel decided to give Avengers: Infinity War that specific title, they promised their audience that the Avengers were going to show up in their film.

 

Pre-movie prediction: As Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson try to solve the mystery, they come across an actual vampire. Thinking that they’re the culprit, Holmes and Watson take the vampire in for questioning. While they question the vampire, they learn that the vampire is on the same mission as Sherlock and Watson: to figure out who is committing crimes in the neighborhood. Sherlock, Watson, and the vampire work together to solve the crime, while Sherlock and Watson gain more knowledge and appreciation for the vampire community.

 

Queen of the Damned

Pre-movie questions:

  1. I’ve read that in the Interview with the Vampire film, Lestat gets burned alive by Louis. However, within the movie clips from the aforementioned MsMojo video and the Queen of the Damned trailer, it appears that Lestat not only survived this incident, but also doesn’t appear to have any physical evidence of ever having been burned. How exactly was this possible? I’m hoping that one of the characters in Queen of the Damned explains this possibility, even if it is a brief explanation.

 

2. One the biggest criticisms I’ve read about the Queen of the Damned film is that Lestat and Jesse choose to pursue a romantic relationship with each other, despite the fact that these characters never have any type of relationship in The Vampire Chronicles books. If Lestat and Jesse love each other enough to choose to pursue a romantic relationship with each other, then how come it appears, in the Queen of the Damned trailer, that Lestat is trying to pursue a romantic relationship with Akasha? This leads me to bring up my pre-movie prediction:

 

Pre-movie prediction: Lestat’s affection for Akasha is all an act. He is trying to distract Akasha so that the other vampires in that particular vampire world can create and execute a plan to defeat Akasha. This entire plan that I just mentioned was all Jesse’s idea. It would make sense because, from what I’ve heard, Jesse is a vampire expert, so she would know how to defeat a vampire.

 

  1. Are Jesse and Akasha in love with Lestat or are they in love with the idea of being in a relationship with him? For instance, does Jesse see Lestat as a potential significant other or something to brag about?

 

Both of these reviews will appear on 18 Cinema Lane closer to Halloween, so stay tuned!

 

Have fun at the movies!

Sally Silverscreen

 

If you want to check out the references I mentioned in this post you can type in “Top 10 Movies Based on Books That Need a Do-Over” into Youtube’s search bar and visit this link:

https://www.thetoptens.com/the-most-disappointing-movies-of-all-time/ (I just want to let you know, there is some language and rated R movies on this list)