Uncle Ira's Basement: DRACULA HAS RISEN FROM THE GRAVE
Filled from start to finish with lush color cinematography and surprisingly bloody violence for a G-rated film, DRACULA HAS RISEN FROM THE GRAVE gives Christopher Lee the opportunity to give one of his most menacing, evil portrayals of cinema’s favorite vampire villain. Without Van Helsing around to save the villagers, Dracula quickly gets his fill of blood from numerous victims and turns a bevy of Hammer beauties into his fallen minions until the final battle at Dracula’s castle.
Frank, Trish and Scott reminisce about their own memories of watching Lee as Dracula for our first times, and marvel at his impact on the role’s image that previously was so strongly associated with Bela Lugosi in Universal’s classic incarnation. Even in this mini-podcast which runs double the normal length of Uncle Ira’s Basement episodes, the Geeks talk at length about this film’s honored place in the Hammer horror canon and Dracula series, and director Freddie Francis’ use of religious imagery (and ample bosoms) to step up Dracula’s danger and evil power. While the promotional poster for this film was very much tongue-and-fang-in-cheek, DRACULA HAS RISEN FROM THE GRAVE is still a great example of Christopher Lee’s power and talent as an actor and a horror icon. Thankfully, Christopher Lee will live on forever through his acting in decades of memorable movies.
For more Christopher Lee discussion with the Damn Dirty Geeks, listen to our episode with guest Ted Newsom, who reunited Lee and Peter Cushing for the final time as co-narrators of his Hammer horror documentary in 1994.
Three of our Damn Dirty Geeks — Frank Dietz, Trish Geiger and Scott Weitz — pay the first of many DDG tributes to the great actor Christopher Lee while discussing one of his most popular Hammer horror films, DRACULA HAS RISEN FROM THE GRAVE, released in 1968.
Trivia: While it’s hard to verify this claim due to a lack of sortable data, DRACULA HAS RISEN FROM THE GRAVE is rumored to be the first film rated by the MPAA’s new standards initiated on November 1, 1968. If this film was not the first film rated by the MPAA, it’s definitely one of their first as it was released in U.S. theaters on November 7, 1968.
DRACULA HAS RISEN FROM THE GRAVE trailer – watch the 1968 theatrical trailer on YouTube
HAMMER FILMS – visit the official website for info on current and classic Hammer horror films
CHRISTOPHER LEE – visit the actor’s IMDB page for a full list of his extensive career credits
4 FILM FAVORITES: DRACULA – purchase the DVD set including DRACULA HAS RISEN at Amazon.com
TCM CLASSICS: HAMMER HORROR – get their 4-film Hammer horror collection at Amazon.com