Wednesday, March 24, 2010
SON of DRACULA
The second person I associate with Act Naturally, the song that contains the lyrics that are the namesake of this blog is Ringo Starr. I feel it is only appropriate to review one of Ringo's movies as my second blog post.
Ringo produced Son of Dracula and it was done under the banner of Apple Corps. The movie stars Ringo and one his long time friends Harry Nilsson. It has been rumored that David Bowie was originally courted for the Nilsson part and after seeing Nilsson's acting, Bowie would definitely have been a better choice.
Son of Dracula starts with a depiction of a Vampire that is reminiscent of Nosferatu. He is killed, but we learn that he had impregnated a human, and his yet to be born son will become King of the Netherworld in 100 years.
Fast forward 100 years and we find Count Downe (Nilsson) going to England to gain his throne. Merlin (Ringo) is going to assist him by letting him know the exact time that his coronation should take place. Along the way The Count falls in love with a mortal and Van Helsing agrees to help him become human. Dr. Frankenstein wants to thwart this plan or become King of the Netherworld himself. That's the basic plot of Son of Dracula and even though it sounds confusing, it's not really that hard to keep up with while watching.
Son of Dracula also includes a Frankenstein Monster, other Vampires, Mummies, Zombies, a Wolfman, and a woman who can turn into a cat. In other words, a little dash of everything from the old Universal horror movies.
Son of Dracula wasn't a very good movie, the acting was poor, the lighting was bad, and it could have used a better editor. Surprisingly, the songs performed were actually placed in logical situations; however, only two songs "Living Without You" and "Daybreak" actually fit within the movie storyline and "Daybreak" was the only song especially written for Son of Dracula. This movie would probably have been better as a comedy and considering that they named their lead character Count Downe, why they didn't go this route is a mystery (even the original movie poster makes it appear to be a comedy); but Son of Dracula is played dead straight with not an ounce of humor to be found.
Ringo can be a much better actor (The Magic Christian, Candy, That'll Be The Day) than seen here, but maybe he didn't have good direction; but let's face the facts, it was his movie and who was going to tell him anything.
Keith Moon, Peter Frampton, and John Bonham are listed in the credits and I know they were the back-up of musicians in some of the musical performances in the movie. I missed them on this first viewing of Son of Dracula, but unfortunately, I don't think I could stand watching a second time in order to see them.