The Big Scare

1974 [FRENCH]

Action / Comedy / Fantasy / Horror

IMDb Rating 3.5/10 10 240 240

Top cast

Peter Cushing as MacGregor
Alida Valli as Héloïse
Valentina Cortese as (uncredited)
Miou-Miou as Marie
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
821.8 MB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 29 min
Seeds 3
1.49 GB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 29 min
Seeds 12

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by The_Void 3 / 10

Boring vampire film

Peter Cushing in a vampire movie. Sound good? Yes I thought so too...until I saw Tender Dracula. This is a French film and comes across as something like an arty Hammer Horror flick. The plot focuses on two writers. They go on a trip with their girlfriends (who both look like men in drag) and end up at the castle of an aging actor. He is famous for portraying vampires on screen; but as the night progresses, the group begins to wonder if the man is really acting when he is on screen. The film basically consists of eighty five minutes of boring dialogue and as you can probably imagine; it gets boring quickly. The copy I saw was of really poor quality; but in spite of that it's clear that the film doesn't utilise any particularly interesting locations which helps to make it more of a dull experience. The title, 'Tender Dracula' lead me to believe that it might be some sort of soft-core porn outing, but there's no sex or nudity in the film and the title is quite inappropriate. I'd hesitate even to call this a horror film really since there's no actual horror in it. Tender Dracula is a 'lost' film, and really that is for good reason and I doubt it will be resurfacing any time soon!

Reviewed by kevinolzak 2 / 10

A deservedly 'lost film' from Peter Cushing

1974's "Tender Dracula" was shot in France under the title "La Grande Trouille" (The Big Scare), purportedly a comedy, which may be the main reason why Peter Cushing chose to star, as 'High Priest of Horror' MacGregor, not a real vampire but an actor known for playing one, ala Christopher Lee. At the 16 minute mark, our introduction to him is a pleasant surprise, suitably attired in cape and fangs, but the relentless, unfocused insanity makes for a very unpleasant viewing experience. Alida Valli is the only other veteran in the cast, while the rest are cardboard ciphers of no interest whatsoever. As a sex farce, there are neither laughs nor thrills, as the two actresses are poorly made up, resembling a pair of bored drag queens. As for Peter Cushing, the role could have been much like Boris Karloff's Byron Orlok in "Targets," an icon who wants to abandon the genre that made him famous, but this lone directorial effort from prolific producer Pierre Grunstein offers no substance to support its star (there are photos from titles like "Tales from the Crypt" and "From Beyond the Grave," setting up a short sequence with Cushing playing his own gravedigger grandfather). It's a rare instance where Cushing can be said to be hammy, forgivable under the arduous circumstances, but his yearnings to free himself from 'horror' to 'romance' come off as very real, the lone 'truth' amid so much that's false ("she's not afraid of growing old, she's in love. Love is ageless, and because she is in love, she is pure. All things from above are peaceful, gentle, and pure"). Christopher Lee would have his chance in 1976's "Dracula and Son," in which he did indeed play a real vampire, just not Dracula.

Reviewed by cfc_can 2 / 10

Keep this one buried!

Tender Dracula is a combination horror film and French bedroom farce. It is one of Peter Cushing's least known films and for good reason. He plays a hammy actor who may or may not be a real vampire. Though Cushing is listed as the star, the film centers a lot more on the antics of two writers who visit Cushing's castle by the sea and the two girls they bring with them. There is a lot of nudity, some blood, some dream sequences and very little sense. It's like the makers want the viewer to puzzle over whether what is happening is real or not. By the end, the film becomes almost dream-like and makes no sense whatsoever. It's anybody's guess as to why Cushing signed on for this film. It is way beneath him. It's even beneath John Carradine!

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