(List) 20 Must-See German Horror Movies

2. Nosferatu The Vampyre (1979)


Werner Herzog’s Nosferatu The Vampyre should be an object lesson in the art of the remake for a film culture rife with an irrepressible rage for the redo. Playing to the visual and narrative strengths of the original, down to cribbing many of its iconic compositions, Herzog still succeeds in imprinting the material with his own unique sensibility. The result is an earnest homage that also bears unmistakable traces of cinematic one-upmanship.

The basic plot of the original film is followed with a few additions here and there. Count Dracula leaves his castle in Transylvania and sets sail for Wismar in search of new blood. Once there, he unleashes an army of rats that fan out across the town spreading the plague. Only Lucy (Isabelle Adjani) knows the cause of the pestilence and sets out to put an end to Dracula’s reign of terror.

In short, Nosferatu The Vampyre is one of, of not the very, most atmospheric and dour versions of the Dracula story there is and has a macabre feeling from beginning to end. There’s nothing Hollywood or romantic about this version of the Count; he’s a sad and pathetic, though completely terrifying, creature of the night. As he should be.

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