James Rolfe: Welcome to Cinemassacre's "Monster Madness", still in the early stages of our history of horror films. The year is 1922, the place is Germany and this is "Nosferatu". "Nosferatu" was one of the first movies to create the signature of one of the most classic and recognizable horror movie icons of all time; the vampire. But this isn't just any vampire – this is Dracula. However, unable to get the rights to "Dracula" from Bram Stoker's widow, director F.W. Murnau changed the character's name to Orlok, though most American prints I've seen still say 'Dracula'.
Anyway, this is one of the creepiest old movies you will ever see. From beginning to end, it has this eerie mood that never lets up. With so many contemporary horror films, relying on loud noises to scare you, this one has this subtle quietness, and after all it is a silent film, but that just enhances the atmosphere and it makes you feel that you're in a nightmare. That wicked shadow ascending the staircase, the shape of Dracula coming through the doorway, which just fits his body. These are images that you don't forget, they've all become popular screen shots for decades to come and perhaps the rest of time.
Also, check out "Shadow of the Vampire". It's a work of fiction, but it takes a look behind the making of "Nosferatu", but in which Murnau hires a real vampire to play the part. Well, for all we know, it could have been true.