Nosferatu, a Symphony of Horror (Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens) (Nosferatu the Vampire) Reviews
You see in this film so many of the trademark horror elements, such as the villagers in an inn warning young Hutter about the danger as he mentions his plans to go to Orlok's castle, which may remind you of movies like 1981's 'An American Werewolf in London'. And yet, this one deserves credit for being first, in 1922, and for giving us some fantastic scenes, such as the one of Hutter finding and opening his coffin, where we see just a fraction of Orlok's evil face initially, eyes open and long fangs visible. Alexander Granach is also great as 'Knock', his minion/ estate agent with giant, bushy eyebrows, who, when jailed, catches and eats flies for their blood.
I don't think it's cool that Murnau changed the names around because he couldn't get movie rights to Bram Stoker's story, but I'm glad the film survived (Stoker's heirs wanted all prints destroyed). The movie drags on at times and the simplicity of the ending was not satisfying to me, so it fell a little short, but if you're into classic horror films, this is probably must-see and you may love it, instead of just liking it as I did.
Count Orlock is so horrifying and believable that Klaus Kinski reprised this role in Shadow Of The Vampire, which is about the making of Nosferatu.
As a young student of the early and especially silent horror genre, I watched this and recognized its power in my have watched this in my late teens and many times since over the years. I recall seeing this on TCM a few years back and was spellbound yet again. That was one of the greatest cinematic experiences I ever had, and I felt that rarified feeling that you reach only a few times in your life during a film viewing. If you are a fan of early horror films and haven't seen this, it is a must-view.
Being a silent movie, the performances are very theatrical. Max Schrek is brilliant as Nosferatu, contributing significantly to the eerie atmosphere.
Not perfect - the pacing is a bit uneven, and the plot sometimes feels contrived.
Still, an absolute classic.