Who was better as Dracula-- Lugosi or Lee?

Discussion in 'Classic' started by RyanPC, May 22, 2005.

  1. RyanPC

    RyanPC Guest

    While Lugosi created the traditional image of Dracula that we all know today, I happen to think Christopher Lee was creepier and classier as Dracula... not to mention that the movies were better. What do you think?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 22, 2005
  2. booper71

    booper71 Lord of the Thighs.

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    Lee was awesome
     
  3. onebyone

    onebyone Guest

    Lee was awesome as Dracula, but better and "classier " than Lugosi? I think not. It has become popular to insult Lugosi, but I am not going to go there.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 22, 2005
  4. Ash28M

    Ash28M Active Member

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    Out of those two I choose Lee. Klaus Kinski and Max Schreck beat them both though IMO.
     
  5. Katatonia

    Katatonia Hellbound Heart

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    Lugosi was of course a classic and a very authentic Dracula...from his heritage to his accent, but I have to go with Lee as my personal favorite.
     
  6. allmessedup

    allmessedup It's beer time.

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    I prefer Lee, but have a lot of respect for Bela as well. I tend to like his non-Dracula movies better. Lee just had more opportunity to really build the character and make it his own...I feel that the place to have seen Lugosi's Dracula was on stage.
     
  7. Erick H.

    Erick H. Well-Known Member

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    Lee is my favorite,but Lugosi is excellent.Certainly Lee had more chances to play the role.Actually,my favorite Lugosi turns were not as Dracula,but as zombie master Muder Legendre in WHITE ZOMBIE and the vengeful Vitus Werdegast in THE BLACK CAT.Bela was a much better actor than he is often given credit for.
     
  8. Luna

    Luna Guest

    God, how to choose? Lee certainly had more practice playing Dracula in films, I believe, but Lugosi's Dracula is THE Dracula most people think about when you say the name. I love them both dearly and cannot choose one over the other! It hurts too much! :p
     
  9. JW77

    JW77 Support Halliburton

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    Kind of hate to put them up against each other.

    But Lugosi is the iconic face of Dracula, even though, personally, I much prefer the Hammer Dracula films with Lee to the Universal Dracula movies with Lugosi.
     
  10. dwatts

    dwatts New Member

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    Yeah, a tough one. However, there are a few things that need taking into account. Firstly, Lugosi played Dracula more times than Lee ever did - just not in film. He played Dracula on the stage prior to ever making a film. His performance is "theatrical" partly because... well it *was* theatrical.

    Secondly, as much as anything else, we're comparing two entirely different era here. Lugosi was doing his thing at the cusp of mainstream sound cinema, Lee was at the cusp of color in horror films. The films have a very different vibe due to this.

    Thirdly, Lee's Dracula could have been an all-time winner had the scripts been better. The first film, "HORROR OF DRACULA" is brilliant, in the second film " BRIDES OF DRACULA". well Dracula wasn't in it. In the third film, "DRACULA, PRINCE OF DARKNESS", he no longer spoke. The fourth film, "DRACULA HAS RISEN FROM THE GRAVE", was great and remains my favorite. The fifth film, "TASTE THE BLOOD OF DRACULA" has grown on me since buying the DVD. The sixth film, "SCARS OF DRACULA" has it's moments, but the climax is so stupid and poorly done, it's up there with anything Ed Wood did. They kind of gave up after that and tried to mod it up, so we got "DRACULA - A.D. 1972". Then we have the indiginity of Lee getting caught in a bush with "SATANIC RITES OF DRACULA".

    As you can see, the series with Lee petered out, and his character - which looked quite suave in the early films, got progressively silly.

    Overall, is Lee better? Well, his portrayl was more contemporary, he had color, and he had better FX. However, he also had Lugosi's legacy to go on. So it's a draw for me.
     
  11. Criswell

    Criswell New Member

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    MAX Schreck.
     
  12. old-boo-radley

    old-boo-radley They stay the same age...

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  13. Horrorfan

    Horrorfan New Member

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    Lugosi is and will forever be Dracula. Lee on the other hand brought horror to the character for the first time.
     
  14. Criswell

    Criswell New Member

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    Lugosi was better.

    To tell the truth I never really believed Lee as a vampire........more like and angry maniac.
     
  15. Damage

    Damage Mirror Mirror

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    While I do prefer Lee's Dracula movies, despite their progressive silliness through the years, it's the image Lugosi's Dracula that will always be seared into our memory, even if we haven't seen his movies, as the quintessential Dracula.

    It does seem unfair to compare the two, as they're from two different eras. If we were to pit Lugosi against Lon Chaney Jr, who made a few Dracula movies in the forties, it would be no contest. (Even though Chaney's Dracula movies are pure popcorn fun too.)

    Lee gave his Dracula character style and sophistication but also a scornful arrogance and a smug swagger, that the living, particularly women, were there for him to consume and discard. I suppose all Dracula characters throughout the years portrayed this to some extent, but Lee's character was just scarier.
     
  16. RyanPC

    RyanPC Guest

    Sorry, Max Schreck is NOT an option. Clearly the title of the thread indicates this. ;)
     
  17. hell ya!

    hell ya! ~Go ahead, make my day~

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    Klaus Kinski
     
  18. RyanPC

    RyanPC Guest

    Ahem. :rolleyes:
     
  19. KR~!

    KR~! The Apocalyptic Kid

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    It's a tie :p
     
  20. hell ya!

    hell ya! ~Go ahead, make my day~

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    :lol:
     

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