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Vampire Circus (Two-Disc Blu-ray/DVD Combo) [Blu-ray]
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In a small Serbian village, the townsfolk murder evil vampire Count Mitterhaus (Robert Tayman) after it's discovered he has been killing local children with the help of the schoolmaster's wife (Domini Blythe). Several years later, a troupe of circus entertainers arrive in the village, and the cycle of horror starts once more. Out to avenge the death of Mitterhaus, his distant cousin Emil (Anthony Higgins) and a mysterious gypsy maiden (Adrienne Corri) have a score to settle. But why does it involve innocent Dora (Lynne Frederick)?
Shape-shifting vampires and colourful circus illusions make VAMPIRE CIRCUS one of the bright spots at a time when Hammer Studios was starting to struggle in it's attempts to maintain popularity. Anthony Higgins makes for one helluva sexy vampire; he's matched every step of the way by Adrienne Corri. Fans of the unappreciated Lynne Frederick (sadly more associated by being the last Mrs Peter Sellers than by her film work) will adore her as the virginal heroine Dora. A mop-haired John Moulder Brown, costumed in such a way that makes him resemble Roman Polanski circa. "The Fearless Vampire Killers", is an unlikely hero but pairs well with Ms Frederick.
If you love Hammer movies, you'll definitely like VAMPIRE CIRCUS. It's hard to find at the moment, but worth the effort.
Vampire Circus is as solid a horror thriller as you are likely to find and deserves it's reputation as one of the best and - up to this point - most obscure Hammer films. It is well thought out with interweaving plot lines. The characters are believable and well portrayed. I won't lay out the story as it's already been done here. It manages to be an intelligent film (you actually have to pay attention to follow the story) without sacrificing graphic, horrific elements. Definitely not for kiddies...apparently like James! (Just kidding, Dude!)
This review is based solely on the film itself as I haven't seen the Synapse disc yet.
The acting is superb from all the leads, including John Moulder-Brown of "The House That Screamed," Lynne Frederick of "Schizo," and David Prowse who is the circus strongman. Prowse was the man behind the mask of Darth Vader in the original "Star Wars" trilogy. The sets and costumes are elaborate and gorgeous. "Vampire Circus" is no low budget production; a lot of money was spent on bringing it to life.
The audio and video of this DVD from LW Editora Ltd., Brasil, are excellent. The quality is as good as any I've seen from Anchor Bay, Blue Underground, MGM, or Paramount. The menu is easy to operate; much easier than I had thought. This DVD of one of the greatest Hammer Productions is well worth the purchase. Who knows when or if it will ever be released in the United States. It is highly recommended for anyone who craves gothic and/or vampire horror, or collects films made by Hammer Productions.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I was so disappointed in the quality of the disc from Synapse Films. The actual movie on both discs is so dark that you can't see ANYTHING! Read morePublished 3 months ago by Dan Saunders
I have been looking for this movie for a long time. A classic vampire movie!!Published 3 months ago by Danna Sadler
Vampire Circus is a great vampire movie. It has a mix of everything you love in a vampire movie. Great change of pace to see a vampire change into something other than a bat.Published 5 months ago by Horror Movie Dad
An interesting and well produced film about vampires in the eighteenth century Balkans. It takes liberties with the usual vampire myths ( some of the vampires appear in broad... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Andreas M. Rau
Finally a proper DVD release of one of the most fun Hammer vampire movies of all time.Published 5 months ago by Steyr AUG
One of the last of the Hammer films, this interesting gem is finally out on Blu-ray. This is not the edited version shown on late night TV, but the full release. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Robert Abel
This has to be one of the weirdest films Hammer ever turned out. Oddly enough, I appreciated it a bit more after watching the extras. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Doc Redbat
I saw a cruddy bootleg copy the first time I saw Vampire Circus and it was the US theatrical version at that. One that was heavily censored to obtain a PG rating. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Tate Hemlock