There are some movies we revisit for our ongoing Deja View series that are well worth the time. However, there are other movies where, midway through, you begin to question everything — including whether or not this is actually a good use of said time. This is one of those movies.
As you can already guess by the title, Dracula 2000 is a fairly dated film. It’s a product of the era. Technically, the full promotional title is Wes Craven Presents: Dracula 2000, but the late, great horror legend barely had anything to do with this movie outside of a producing role. It was actually directed by Patrick Lussier, who’s more well known within the horror genre for also directing the remake of My Bloody Valentine (in 3D!) as well as being an editor on many of Craven’s movies (including Scream through Scream 3). Oh, and Vitamin C is in this. Shall we dive in?
1. Right off the bat, I can tell this is going to be a film where the greatness of the cast eclipses the general awfulness of things. Jonny Lee Miller. Christopher Plummer. Omar Epps. Sean Patrick Thomas?!
2. Like I said, Vitamin C is in this, but she’s credited by her given name, Colleen Fitzpatrick. That’s not going to throw me off the scent at all. I know my late-'90s pop singers.
3. So far the only thing this movie makes me want to do is walk around singing, “In the year 2000 … !”4. It’s been 18 years and I can’t tell the difference between the Plummer of Dracula 2000 and the Plummer of All the Money in the World. The man has reached Peak Aging and cannot age any further.
5. Jennifer Esposito’s accent in this is supposed to be fake, which is a relief considering it is Not Great, Bob. Same goes for Sean Patrick Thomas. But I guess professional thieves aren’t supposed to be good at faking Brit.
6. Ah yes, the angry metal music that often serves as backdrop music to hacking into a decrypted security system.7. Turns out the only thing Omar Epps was missing for me was a pair of glasses and a long trenchcoat. INTO.
8. I thought Christopher Plummer (aka Old Man Van Helsing) had a hidden stash of drinks inside his chessboard but it’s only leeches in jars. Say no to bloodletting, kids.
9. This Bunch of Thieves decides that the ancient pottery and tapestries Old Man Van Helsing has in his safe aren’t worth it, so of course it makes sense to take the old creepy coffin barricaded behind three different security doors instead. Nothing bad will come from this.
10. Rigged traps actually kill two minor thieves and THEY STILL DECIDE TO TAKE THE COFFIN WITH THEM. This seems like way too much effort to steal something that may or may not contain gold, jewels, or anything actually valuable.11. Check out his arsenal.
12. Dracula wakes up on account of all the blood he’s sucked into his coffin, and he’s angry. He also looks like Gerard Butler, which is to say 2000s hot.13. HELLO, VITAMIN C. She’s playing our modern-day version of Lucy, while this movie’s version of Mina is super cute with her Isabella Rossellini-style hair that was all the rage 18 years ago.
14. Oh, Old Man Van Helsing. You’re too old to go off on some damn fool idealistic crusade hunting Gerard Butler-Drac. Even Jonny Lee Miller agrees with me here.
15. One of the thieves suggests trying to blow up the coffin. While they are flying in an airplane. I think they deserve whatever happens to them at this point.
16. Ooooh, creepy fog! Dracula! We haven’t had that in an adaptation in a while, even if it does just look like a lot of dry ice.17. Dracula has a creepy metal mask covering his face, and now I’m actively pitching a crossover with this and Leo’s Man in the Iron Mask remake.
18. LEECHES. LEECHES IN EYES. And they’re filled with black blood, because of course.
19. Leaning down next to the rotting corpse inside the impenetrable coffin to listen to its disturbing murderwhispers will get you killed. Anyone knows that.
20. “I do not need this sh*t.” Sean Patrick Thomas is me in every potential horror movie I could find myself in and maybe I need to put on Save the Last Dance after this.21. Dracula 2000: on his way to steal your girl.
22. “You’re not from that coffin.” Saying it out loud doesn’t make it true, Omar Epps. Famous last words.23. Mina works at a Virgin Records Megastore (remember those?) and for some reason, she was given employee T-shirts that deliberately don’t fit her … for the sole purpose of just sleeping in? I’m confused.
24. This is pre-Buffy, but the sight of Nathan Fillion in that clergy collar is already giving me Caleb flashbacks. Leave my eyeballs alone.25. Shane West pretending to get strangled by an invisible Dracula on camera is, frankly, worth the price of admission.
26. Dracula 2000: on his way to steal your girl again.27. See? Normal-sized work shirt this time. (Even if it is in the babydoll style that was oh so popular back then. I feel old.)
28. I’m just now realizing that this is pre-9/11, so Old Man Van Helsing getting all of those medieval weapons through security is not far-fetched (but also, who would know what to do with an actual crossbow?!).
29. Jonny Lee Miller’s leather jacket should make him more predisposed to the acceptance that vampires are, in fact, real — but it looks like he’s going to have to learn the hard way.30. A stake hidden inside of a cross? Buffy could’ve used one of those.
31. Mina-actually-Mary says she was scared by the visions of making out with Drac-Butler but come on, girl. You kinda liked it too.
32. There’s a lot of obvious wire work involved to try and convince us that Jennifer Esposito has vampire powers now.
33. We’re over an hour in and I believe Drac has uttered his very first words of the entire film. He’s not much of a talker.
34. Every ancient vampire knows the way to a girl’s heart is through her best friend. And to do that, you run into her at a party and use your ancient vampire sex powers to convince her to take you back to their apartment. And that’s how we get a scene where Vitamin C and Dracula bang while floating up on the ceiling. Oh, and Mina has a vision of it.35. Nothing like a little blatant product placement within a brief fight scene which also gives Jonny Lee Miller the opportunity to say, “Never, ever f*ck with an antiques dealer.” You can’t make this stuff up, but apparently you can write it. Someone had to.
36. Gerard Butler clearly never got used to talking with fake vampire teeth in his mouth. Oof.
37. Apparently Dracula can also turn into a wolf that suddenly turns into bats when shot at. That’s new.
38. Time for a scene where our main protagonists, Jonny Lee Leather Jacket and Mina-actually-Mary briefly commiserate over the loss of Old Man Van Helsing. But now they have a Plan. And the Plan is to kill Dracula.39. Before they get to him, though, they have to make it past his Brides. The new crop in the year 2000 consists of Jennifer Esposito, Jeri Ryan, and Vitamin C. And I’m not hating it. Because they look FIERCE.
40. I’m used to vampires that dust when staked, though. These bodies falling down all over the place are weeeeeird.
41. Dracula speaks Aramaic, which is a dead language. Because Dracula is actually Judas Iscariot, and when he bites Mina-actually-Mary we get all of that lovely exposition told through red-tinted flashback. Because blood.42. Haven’t I seen this shot in a music video somewhere before?
43. Time for that sudden-but-inevitable betrayal sequence!
44. This is the most any version of Mina has ever gone toe to toe with any version of Dracula and now I want a Mina the Vampire Slayer show.
45. Oh, and Butler-Drac dies by hanging from a giant neon cross until he bursts into flames from the sun, because religious imagery and also narrative symmetry, I guess?
46. Mina survives the fall thanks to that batch of vampire blood inside her, which is all that matters. And this ending sets up a clear sequel that doesn’t even feature her, but I choose to believe she wound up becoming a badass vampire hunter who wore lots of leather pants and occasionally teamed up with Buffy. The end.