Books in the Park

suggestions from the Barbara S. Ponce Public Library at Pinellas Park

Dracula’s Daughter (1936)

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draculas daughterDr. Von Helsing can rest easily knowing that Count Dracula is dead for good. The evil vampire was destroyed by Von Helsing’s own two hands (plus a wooden stake), and now London is safe. The matter of his being arrested for the Count’s murder are trivial compared to his great feat. Nevertheless, Von Helsing enlists the help of his former student, psychiatrist Dr. Jeffrey Garth, to help build a case for his sanity.

Unbeknownst to Von Helsing, a new terror stalks the night. The beautiful Countess Marya Zaleska desperately wants a normal life, but first she must find a way to stop her cravings for human blood. She eventually turns to Dr. Jeffery Garth for a cure, and she will stop at nothing to get it.

This is not at true “Lesbian Vampire” movie, but it dips its foot in the genre. As a vampire, Countess Zaleska feeds on both men and women. Yes, that is a metaphor. Whatever her meal preferences are, Zaleska’s primary focus remains on her mission: to be content with her life. Everything else falls by the wayside, even the safety of others. Zaleska, played by Gloria Holden, is arguably the best part of the film. She is a brooding and fascinating villain, who the modern viewer will end up rooting for.

The film was made in 1936 and, as a result, is full of out-dated notions about pretty much everything; most egregious is the heavy implication that bisexual women are blood-sucking monsters. Despite this misconception, the film will surely delight and intrigue the viewers who love vampires, old horror movies, or both.

Check the PPLC Catalog for Dracula’s Daughter.

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