Julian West
Director: Carl Theodor Dreyer Cast: Julian West
Julian West
, Maurice Schutz
Maurice Schutz
, Jan Hieronimko
Jan Hieronimko
Carl Theodor Dreyer

Blu-ray (Special Edition / Wide Screen)

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Vampyr ranks in many circles as one of the greatest horror films of all time. Inspired by Sheridan Le Fanu's Carmilla, the story concerns a mysterious series of killings, committed by a crone of a female vampire (Henriette Gerard). The story is told through the eyes of a holiday reveller (Julian West), who at first scoffs at the notion of a supernatural murderer, but who is eventually forced to believe that there are more things in heaven and earth. Dreyer offers few explanations of the phenomena he presents on screen: the strange and frightening happenings just happen, as casually as any everyday occurrence. As was his custom, Dreyer mostly uses nonprofessionals in his cast. Vampyr is available in a wide variety of severely edited and duped versions.

Product Details

Release Date: 10/03/2017
UPC: 0715515204910
Original Release: 1932
Rating: NR
Source: Criterion
Region Code: A
Presentation: [Wide Screen]
Time: 1:13:00
Sales rank: 12,154

Special Features

High-definition digital transfer of the original German-language version of the film from the 1998 restoration by Martin Koerber and the Cineteca di Bologna, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack; Alternate version with English text; Audio commentary from 2008 featuring film scholar Tony Rayns; Carl Th. Dreyer, a 1966 documentary by Jørgen Roos chronicling Dreyer's career; Video essay from 2008 by scholar Casper Tybjerg on Dreyer's influnces in creating Vampyr; Radio broadcast from 1958 of Dreyer reading an essay about filmmaking

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Julian West David Gray
Maurice Schutz Lord of the Manor
Jan Hieronimko Doctor
Sybille Schmitz His Daughter Leone
Rena Mandel His Daughter Gisele
Henriette Gerard Old Woman at Cemetery
Baron Nicolas de Gunzberg David Gray
Albert Bras Servant
N. Babanini His Wife

Technical Credits
Carl Theodor Dreyer Director,Producer,Screenwriter
Baron Nicolas de Gunzberg Producer
Rudolph Maté Cinematographer
Louis Nee Cinematographer
Hermann Warm Art Director
Julian West Producer
Wolfgang Zeller Score Composer

Customer Reviews

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Vampyr 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
D_Bannon More than 1 year ago
Criterion's 2008 release of Carl Theodor Dreyer's Vampyr (1932) illustrates how subtitles may integrate within a film to improve the whole. Translator John Gudelj and the Criterion spotting/timecoding staff provided subtitles that effortlessly blend with the dialogue. This artistry makes their unique choices even harder to spot. For years translating every word as spoken has been de rigueur. This is desirable for clarity. But with repetitive dialogue, equally repetitive subtitles fail to trust the audience, detracting from rather than enhancing the film. Early in the story, protagonist Allan Gray stops in a country house. 'Guten Abend,' says the young housekeeper, to which Gray immediately responds, 'Guten Abend.' The housekeeper's dialogue is subtitled, 'Good evening.' The subtitles do not repeat the banality when Gray speaks the same line of dialogue. It would be pointless. The audience has heard this common phrase and read the translation when first spoken. Nothing else is necessary. This subtitling choice is used again when the young heroine Gisele sees her sister Leone from the window. 'There, outside,' she cries. 'Leone, Leone!' The initial translation was necessary to communicate to viewers that the dialogue was actually a name, but when Gisele runs outside calling Leone's name over and over, there are no subtitles. The lush imagery of Gisele running through the forest would be marred by subtitles that hammer the obvious. When Gisele and Gray are fog-bound in their little boat, they yell, 'Hallo!' and are guided by answering cries from the opposite bank. The dialogue and context are absolutely clear without subtitles. This technique was used to poignant effect when Leone rests in bed. 'I am damned,' she says. 'Mein Gott, mein Gott. mein Gott.' American audiences are familiar with the German phrase. Gudelj wisely translated the first lines, 'My God, my God.' As the camera pans away from Leone, she pathetically whimpers the same line of dialogue a third time. Here the subtitles are absent, allowing viewers to take in the full emotional impact of Dreyer's images. It is an irony of subtitles that at their best they are so much a part of a film that they go unnoticed. Criterion and Gudelj's subtitles are an example of how to get that right. D. Bannon is a professional subtitler and author of The Elements of Subtitles: A Practical Guide to the Art of Dialogue, Character, Context, Tone and Style in Subtitling [ISBN-10: 0557130727; ISBN-13: 978-0557130726].
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An incredible film, a surrealistic and unsettling nightmare that is as disorienting as it is fasccinating. The audience is suspended in an ethereal place and time, where the supernatural reaches out and immerses it in pure horror, unadulterated with extravagant special effects and gimmicks to shock the audience. The art is the horror itself, and it's easy to see why this movie has retained its timeless appeal. If you are a fan of horror, this is a must for your collection.
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