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March 01, 2009

NOSFERATU THE VAMPYRE — CLASSIC FILM PICK

NosferatuWerner Herzog's inspired homage to F.W. Murnau's 1922 silent film is an appropriately chilling telling of the Gothic tale derived from Bram Stoker's Dracula.

Klaus Kinski delivers a delightfully spot-on performance that may be finest of his career as the bloodthirsty vampire Count Dracula who takes advantage of a real estate broker (played by Bruno Ganz). Naturally, the vampire has to travel in his coffin on a ship infested with plague-carrying rats. Herzog plays with surrealistic compositions that are truly terrifying.

Isabelle Adjani brings her immutable beauty to bear as the broker's fearful wife, fated to suffer Dracula’s blood-hungry bite. "Nosferatu" is filled with delightfully scary touches and recreated camera angles from Murnau's original that add a historic context to this masterpiece of horror from one of the New German Cinema's most prolific and enduring members.

Nosferatu1979

Rated PG. 107 mins. (A+) (Five stars — out of five / no halves)

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