Book Review: Vampire Films of the 1970s

Vampire Films of the 1970sVampire Films of the 1970s
By Gary A. Smith
Published by McFarland, 2017. 240 pages.

Being the ’70s is the decade I grew up in, watching more than my share of flicks on TV, I’m always up for reading more about this wonderful decade and the movies that came out. Decades before zombies would finally take over, at this particular point in time, vampires still ruled both in theaters and television. This is more than proven with the amount of titles covered here by Smith.

The book starts with a brief overview of the sub-genre, some rules of vampires, then we jump right into the Hammer Film era, where he first gives a little history about the famous British studio before jumping to their ’70s Dracula flicks, then moving on to other fang flicks. Since Hammer made quite a few of them during the ’70s, they are all covered here, lumped together in different sub-categories. There are other groups in the book, like Asian vampires, the Mexican Santo movies, even one on vampire porn! So there are plenty of titles to seek out if you are relatively new to the vampire genre, or are always looking ones you have missed.

While this book is great for a beginner fan, if you are pretty experienced with the fang flicks of that era, you probably won’t learn anything new here. But I will say that it was a nice trip down memory lane to read through these movies. In fact, after reading about Blacula and its sequel, I decided to revisit both of those since I had just gotten the blu-ray double feature of them!

Most of the films covered have a synopsis of the film, though I think there were a couple that were missing them. I would advise not reading those until after you’ve seen the movies since they will give out spoilers. There is also a great filmography in the back, that makes a great check list. Smith definitely did his research here and knows what he’s writing about. It is a very quick and easy read, filled with some interesting facts about the films as well.

You can order this book directly from McFarland’s website at www.mcfarlandpub.com, or call them at 800-253-2187.

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