Though writer-director Attila Luca secures locations in Vancouver, Paris and Romania – all filmed in attractive wintery widescreen – and casts striking-looking performers, this is mostly a dull watch. It never really establishes its premise, and I get the impression crucial story pages of the script didn’t get shot or were filmed and not used. A key secondary character, handsome mystery man Christian (Eric Kara), is suspiciously charming throughout and helps the naïve investigators on a journey to doom but vanishes from the film without explanation rather than (as we expect) turning out to be Dracula in the finale.
In the world of the film, vampires are apparently an accepted part of humanity and Dracula and his family are powerful celebrities who cultivate a positive media image. Or perhaps not – this is what we’re told in one scene, which doesn’t seem to fit with the basic plot. Canadian journalists Hannah (Tina Balthazar), Emmy (Chloé Dumas) and Xavier (Yannis Baraban) are investigating a series of vampire murders perpetrated by the Cult of Dracula, which means a lot of internet searching. Meanwhile, Corvinus (Yves Carlevaris) stalks streets with a Nosferatu look and a very natty purple-hooded cape and bites down on folks, being the most notable member of the Cult currently active. At one point, a gang of Paris-based vampires on bicycles pursue a victim on a motorbike. Our heroes take no precautions whatsoever as they continue their sleuthing on tourist locations, and get picked off one by one by Corvinus – surely, they’d at least try crucifixes or garlic or wooden stakes?
Everyone is very pretty, but also rather hard to understand – it might have made more sense to film it in French and use sub-titles. Leading lady Balthazar has a strange, expressionless look that makes her a hard sell as a representative of non-undead humanity. In the absence of an actual Dracula, Carlevaris chews necks and the scenery and cloak-swishes a lot. One reason for its obscurity is that it’s often mixed up with the other film called Dracula Reborn (2012).