15 Terrifying Dracula Movies To Make Your Blood Run Cold

Photo of author
Written By Lori C.

Lori C. writes about movies, TV shows, and the latest updates from the world of entertainment. She studied Film and Television many years ago at university and uses her knowledge to dissect the newest releases. When not in front of a laptop, she wanders around various European cities with a backpack and a little dog.

As far as the undead are concerned, Dracula seems to be making a comeback in popularity. Last year’s Reinfield featured none other than Nicholas Cage as the immortal monster and this week’s The Last Voyage of the Demeter is the most recent horror movie about Bram Stoker’s most infamous Prince of Darkness to hit theaters. In this adaptation, Spanish actor Javier Botet (It Chapter One) takes on the mantle of Dracula. 

But this sea-based horror is far from the only time the old Count with a penchant for young virgin blood appears on the silver screen. While Dracula movies are plentiful,  not all are as terrifying as the ones on this list. So gather your garlic, ready your stakes, and hit play on these 15 blood-curdling movies about the Vampire Lord.

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992)

Gary Oldman and Keanu Reeves in Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992)
Image credit: American Zoetrope – © 1992
  • Director: Francis Ford Coppola
  • Starring: Gary Oldman, Winona Ryder, Anthony Hopkins

Official synopsis: In this faithful adaptation of Bram Stoker’s classic, young barrister Jonathan Harker is trapped by the undead Dracula in a gloomy Eastern European village. Dracula is lured to London by a photograph of Harker’s fiancée, Mina Murray, and unleashes a wave of seduction and terror. As he drains the life from Mina’s friend Lucy Westenra, her circle of friends assembles to expel Dracula and end his reign of darkness.

Nosferatu (1922)

Max Schreck in Nosferatu (1922)
Image credit: Stiftung Deutsche Kinemathek – © Kino International.
  • Director: F.W. Murnau
  • Starring: Max Schreck, Alexander Granach, Gustav von Wangenheim

Official synopsis: The first-ever adaptation of Bram Stoker’s novel follows an estate agent sent to sell a house to Count Orlok in Transylvania. Hutter encounters eerie events and realizes Orlok is a vampire. Meanwhile, Orlok heads to Wisbourg, bringing death. Hutter rushes back to save his wife Ellen. Discovering a sacrificial solution, Ellen faces a perilous choice. Can Hutter rescue Ellen from Nosferatu’s grasp and prevent her self-sacrifice?

The Brides of Dracula (1960) 

Yvonne Monlaur and David Peel in The Brides of Dracula (1960)
Image credit: Universal Pictures via IMDB
  • Director: Terence Fisher
  • Starring: Peter Cushing, Martita Hunt, Yvonne Monlaur

Official synopsis: En route to Transylvania, a young teacher aids a man’s escape from his overbearing mother, inadvertently releasing undead horrors upon the town, including her school for girls. With fortune on their side, Dr. Van Helsing is en route to help.

Dracula (1979)

Frank Langella and Kate Nelligan in Dracula (1979)
Image credit: Universal Pictures via IMDB
  • Director: John Badham
  • Starring: Frank Langella, Laurence Olivier, Donald Pleasence

Official synopsis: After a storm sinks the ship carrying Count Dracula’s possessions to Yorkshire, he emerges as the sole survivor. Found by enamored Mina Van Helsing, his presence becomes intertwined with the lives of Lucy Seward, her fiance Jonathan Harker, and her father Dr. Jack Seward, who runs a local asylum.

Van Helsing (2004)

Kate Beckinsale and Hugh Jackman in Van Helsing (2004)
Image credit: © 2003 Universal Studios.
  • Director: Stephen Sommers
  • Starring: Hugh Jackman, Kate Beckinsale, Richard Roxburgh

Official synopsis: Van Helsing, a determined monster hunter, arrives to combat evil, even against dissenting voices. Commissioned by the Vatican, he and his ally Carl journey to Transylvania with a mission to halt the formidable Count Dracula. There, they team up with the Gypsy Princess Anna Valerious, committed to breaking a generational curse by defeating the vampire.

Dracula (1931)

Bela Lugosi in Dracula (1931)
Image credit: Universal via IMDB
  • Directors: Tod Browning, Karl Freund
  • Starring: Bela Lugosi, Helen Chandler, David Manners

Official synopsis: Estate agent Renfield embarks on a journey to Transylvania to finalize a real estate deal with Count Dracula. Ignoring local warnings of impending evil, Renfield becomes unwittingly ensnared as the vampire’s unwilling servant. 

Dracula (2020)

Claes Bang in Dracula (2020)
Image credit: BBC One via IMDB
  • Creators: Mark Gatiss, Steven Moffat
  • Starring: Claes Bang, Dolly Wells, Morfydd Clark

Official synopsis: Jonathan Harker’s journey to Transylvania for a business deal becomes a nightmarish ordeal when he becomes trapped in a labyrinthine castle with undead brides and a power-hungry vampire Count intent on world domination.

Count Dracula (1977)

Susan Penhaligon in Count Dracula (1977)
Image credit: The BBC via IMDB
  • Director: Philip Saville
  • Starring: Louis Jourdan, Frank Finlay, Susan Penhaligon

Official synopsis: This adaptation closely mirrors Bram Stoker’s novel, with Jonathan Harker assisting the Count’s move to England but finding himself imprisoned and exposed to Dracula’s sinister reality. As Dracula reaches England, Harker joins the mission to locate and eliminate him, leading to a pursuit back to the vampire’s castle.

Dracula 2001 (2000)

Gerard Butler in Dracula 2001 (2000)
Image credit: Miramax, Dimension Films via IMDB
  • Director: Patrick Lussier
  • Starring: Gerard Butler, Justine Waddell, Jonny Lee Miller

Official synopsis: In the modern retelling of this timeless Gothic horror, Abraham Van Helsing, having previously battled Count Dracula, assumes the role of an English antiques dealer. When a group of thieves inadvertently release the Dark Prince, he seeks revenge against his old foe. 

Dracula II: Ascension (2003)

Jason Scott Lee, Craig Sheffer, and Jason London in Dracula II: Ascension (2003)
Image credit: Dimension Films via IMDB
  • Director: Patrick Lussier
  • Starring: Jennifer Kroll, Jason Scott Lee, Craig Sheffer

Official synopsis: A cohort of medical students stumble upon the remains of the notorious count. A perilous ordeal starts when a mysterious figure offers them $30 million in exchange for the body. 

11 Dark Prince: The True Story of Dracula (2000)

Dark Prince: The True Story of Dracula (2000)
Image credit: USA Network via IMDB
  • Director: Joe Chappelle
  • Starring: Rudolf Martin, Jane March, Christopher Brand

Official synopsis: Seeking vengeance for his father’s death and to free his kingdom from Turkish rule, Vlad the Impaler raises an army and ignites a brutal revolution that swiftly engulfs the land. Amidst the warfare, his sadism intensifies, with his favored method of execution being impalement. As he gains notoriety, the Church spreads tales of his bloodlust and vampiric nature.

Dracula, Prince of Darkness (1966)

Christopher Lee and Suzan Farmer in Dracula, Prince of Darkness (1966)
Image credit: Hammer Film Productions via IMDB
  • Director: Terence Fisher
  • Starring: Christopher Lee, Barbara Shelley, Andrew Keir

Official synopsis: Venturing into Eastern Europe, two couples ignore ominous local warnings and venture to Karlsbad. Stranded near the village as night falls, they take refuge in a nearby castle, welcomed by the enigmatic Klove. Unbeknownst to them, the deceased owner, Count Dracula, has long awaited their arrival, harboring an eerie agenda.

Dracula (1958)

Christopher Lee and John Van Eyssen in Dracula (1958)
Image credit: Hammer Film Productions via IMDB
  • Director: Terence Fisher
  • Starring: Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee, Michael Gough

Official synopsis: In a remote Transylvanian castle, Jonathan Harker fails to eliminate Count Dracula, and he falls prey to the vampire’s influence. Dracula infiltrates the Harker family, driven by a thirst for blood and retribution. Dr. Van Helsing, a devoted friend, and fellow vampire expert, emerges as their last hope for protection.

Nosferatu the Vampyre (1979)

Isabelle Adjani and Klaus Kinski in Nosferatu the Vampyre (1979)
Image credit: Werner Herzog Filmproduktion via IMDB
  • Director: Werner Herzog
  • Starring: Klaus Kinski, Isabelle Adjani, Bruno Ganz

Official synopsis: Sent to sell a house to Count Dracula, Jonathan Harker becomes ensnared in the vampire’s castle. The count becomes captivated by a photo of Harker’s wife and relocates to Wismar, where he spreads death and plague. This version of Dracula delves into the vampire’s curse of eternal life, unable to age and die.

Dan Curtis’ Dracula (1974)

Jack Palance in Dracula (1974)
Image credit: Latglen Ltd. via IMDB
  • Director: Dan Curtis
  • Starring: Jack Palance, Simon Ward, Nigel Davenport

Official synopsis: Solicitor Jonathan Harker visits Transylvania to assist Count Dracula in a real estate transaction. Ensnared by female vampires, he narrowly escapes the castle. 

The 20 Best Science Fiction Movies of All Time: Enter a World Beyond Your Imagination

Star Wars A New Hope Lucasfilm LTD
Image Credit: Lucasfilm Ltd.

Get ready to explore galaxies far, far away and other realms beyond your imagination! Whether you’re a sci-fi nerd or just a major cinephile, we know you’re going to love these 20 best science-fiction movies of all time. From space battles to time travel, this list has it all. Grab your popcorn, sit back, and enjoy the greatest sci-fi films in this universe or any other.

The 20 Best Fantasy Movies of All Time: Enter a World Beyond Your Imagination

Lord Of The Rings Fellowship New Line Cinema
Image Credit: New Line Cinema.

Get ready to be enchanted as we explore the realm of fantasy films! Immerse yourself in captivating worlds and epic adventures with my handpicked selection of the 20 greatest fantasy movies ever made. From Middle Earth’s mystical landscapes to The Green Mile’s emotional depths, this list promises to transport you to extraordinary realms.

The 20 Best History Movies of All Time: Relive the Past Through the Magic of Film

Hidden Figures
Image Credit: Hopper Stone/Hopper Stone, SMPSP – © TM & © 2017 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation.

Calling all history buffs and movie lovers! Get ready for a cinematic time travel experience with our top 20 history movies. From Schindler’s List’s powerful Holocaust narrative to the groundbreaking Hamilton musical, these films will immerse you in the most significant moments of human history. Prepare for a historical adventure like no other- and you won’t even need to leave your couch!