Nosferatu the Vampyre (1979)
German director Werner Herzog has found a second career as mordant documentarian, but he earned his international reputation for his collaborations with actor/madman Klaus Kinski. Pestilential themes come to the fore of this deliberately paced take on Dracula, with Kinski giving a restrained, melancholy performance beneath hideous makeup that harks back to Max Schreck's Nosferatu. Released the same year as Frank Langella's Dracula and George Hamilton's Love at First Bite.
Anno Dracula (1992)
The first in a series of alternate history novels, Anno Dracula shares with The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen the concept of the literary/historical mashup. Author Kim Newman envisions a vastly different version of London in 1888 when Dracula, having defeated Van Helsing and company, has become Queen Victoria's Prince Consort and transformed the kingdom in his own undead image. The plot ingeniously incorporates figures ranging from Jack the Ripper to Fu Manchu to Oscar Wilde, with Dracula himself making an appropriately horrific appearance in the final chapter.
Dracula: Pages From a Virgin's Diary (2002)
Canadian avant-garde director Guy Maddin presents a filmed version of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet's take on the vampire story. Maddin turns the ballet into a swirling, swoony tribute to silent filmmaking techniques. While the film doesn't always serve the original choreography, it does capture the passions and terrors of the Dracula tale without letting the words get in the way.
The Historian (2005)
Elizabeth Kostova's debut novel borrows Bram Stoker's epistolary style for an account of three generations of historians investigating vampire lore and the history of Vlad the Impaler to find the legendary tomb of Dracula. Closer in spirit to Umberto Eco's historical investigations than Dan Brown's breezy conspiracy tales, The Historian leaves the reader chilled and significantly informed.
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