Great Screen Draculas: Bela the Greatest

To draw theccurtain on this Halloween season, a piece from my old webpage about the greatest, most influential Dracula of all.

I’ve written before about the effect on me of seeing Bela Lugosi in the 1931 Dracula for the first time — creeping through ancient shadows down that cobwebbed staircase, his cape gleaming with starlight, he profoundly enchanted a fatherless eight-year-old.

I was transfixed by Lugosi’s piercing stare, his aquiline nose and strong but softly sculpted face, like an Undead Roman(ian) emperor. Bela Lugosi’s Dracula…