Captain Kronos - Vampire Hunter

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Movie Info

A late entry from the foundering Hammer Studios, this intriguing and highly original twist on the vampire motif -- featuring for once a hero more charismatic than the vampires with which he does battle -- was the first in a planned series of Kronos films, but poor planning on behalf of its overseas distributors killed the franchise's great potential in the American market. Kronos (Horst Janson) -- a kind of swashbuckling Sherlock Holmes of the occult sciences -- and his hunchbacked companion Professor Grost (John Cater), arrive in the village of Durward where the local young wenches are being victimized by a family of vampires that drain youth, not blood, from their victims, turning them into withered old hags. Kronos' mystical intuition and powers of deduction lead him to the elderly Lady Durward (Wanda Ventham) and her pompous children Paul (Shane Briant) and Sara (Lois Daine), and he soon squares off against his vampiric foes with a lethal sword (fashioned from a sacred cross) and a bag of occult tricks (including an interesting use of dead frogs). Well-photographed and cleverly directed by Brian Clemens (Dr. Jekyll & Sister Hyde), this is one of Hammer's few attempts to broaden its audience in the 1970's -- a trend which reached its zenith of zaniness with everybody kung fu fighting in the Hammer/Shaw Brothers collaboration Legend of the Seven Golden Vampires.

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Critic Reviews for Captain Kronos - Vampire Hunter

All Critics (4) | Fresh (3) | Rotten (1)

  • A film with laughable dialogues and some awkwardness in its staging. [Full review in Spanish]

    November 15, 2016 | Full Review…

    Alberto Abuín

    Espinof
    Top Critic
  • Quote not available.

    October 21, 2005 | Rating: 3/5
  • A goofily endearing old chestnut, and one that any self-respecting horror fan will eventually want to check out for themselves.

    April 6, 2004 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • Today, irony has started to look more and more like the death knell for serious horror films, and so the relative straightforwardness of a Captain Kronos: Vampire Hunter is a welcome throwback.

    October 27, 2003 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Captain Kronos - Vampire Hunter

  • May 18, 2013
    A smart take on the vampire lore genre, Captain Kronos doesn't give the attention to the said vampires but onto the bigger than life protagonist with a nicely engaging story and a fair share amount of memorable moments. It also features a lot of disposable scenes, the setting is pretty boring and uninspired but it still manages to complete the b-sleaze aesthetic it carries nicely enough.
    Francisco G Super Reviewer
  • Apr 14, 2012
    Successful entry in the Hammer horror vault due to very artful direction by Brian Clemens who also wrote the intelligent script. Kronos (Horst Janson), he of the too-tight trousers and too-short tunic, arrives in a village where young women are found in the forest with withered faces, drained of life. Is this the work of a new species of vampire? Hunchbacked professor Grost (John Cater) and wild beauty Carla (Caroline Munro) accompany Kronos as he roots out this menace in the 18th century. There are many violent acts but interestingly very little is shown onscreen, apart from a fairly competently staged sword duel. Instead we see the aftermath - blood dripping down a lampshade or a basket of broken eggs carried by a victim - which doesn't give much of a visceral thrill but I appreciated its unusual cerebral style. I also liked how the identity of the vampire(s) are not who you might suspect at first, so the surprise ending was genuinely a surprise!
    Doctor S Super Reviewer
  • Sep 05, 2010
    A swashbuckling vampire tale, I love it. This movie is very cool, it's about a vampire hunter back in the old days, and he travels to this town to slay the vampires. I highly recommend this Hammer horror movie.
    Aj V Super Reviewer
  • Jul 28, 2009
    Allow me to gush: This film is AWESOME. So it takes place in the times of the swashbuckle, you have your one dimensional (2 at most) hero, his smart as hell sidekick, who together comprise of a great vampire hunting team. The sidekick knows everything there is to know about vampire, and is intelligent as hell while Kronos, our hero, is like the gunslinger of fencing swords... or should I say samurai? Well that's actually where this film gets interesting as it shares so many attributes with the Italian western or the samurai film. Not only that but it has a healthy dose of Italian and French exploitation appeal, and is produced by a British studio (Hammer, to be exact). So what you have is a cowboy/samurai/brit-horror hybrid or sorts that works despite it's slow parts and especially because of it's cheese and B appeal. It climaxes in an excited sword fight as well. How can you loose?
    Patrick D Super Reviewer

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