Vampires: between terror and seduction in the cinema

the legend of the vampiresbeings of the dark that sleep in coffins and feed on the Energy Y blood of the living, has been one of the most recurring themes in the history of cinema, with numerous visions that, through the years, have imbued it with new attributes. From that apocryphal figure of silent cinema, Nosferatuuntil draculaa character who is just the tip of the iceberg of a whole film world that has fascinated and terrified for more than a century.

According to Javier Téllez García, professor and film teacher at the UNAMthis character, who transits in the subconscious between the terror and the seductionis the one that has transcended the most in the history of cinema.

“Dracula is a phenomenon as such, before bram stoker there was a tradition since the fourteenth century of the existence of vampires, it is a myth that had been dragged until the time that Stocker popularized it, then it was taken up by the cinema based on this anecdote that they take about Dracula and its variants throughout the history of cinema”, he indicates.

If the novel was popular, the cinema was the factor that popularized the character. His success is reflected, not only in the creation of around 700 projects cinematographic around the figure of the vampire, but in the geographical dimension of producers and directors.

“In the cinema there are a lot of characters that have been portrayed and invented, from Batman, Superman, to James Bond, but the vampire is the character more popular. There is no other character in the history of cinema that has inspired so many films, as a phenomenon, I don’t know how we could explain why the vampire is so attractive”, says the professor.

For Téllez, it is a sociological question, psychological and even, philosophicalwhich surrounds this character.

“It has been stereotyped as if it were a character terrifying, but it is a very subjective matter because, from the point of view of the viewer’s subconscious, he is a seductive, attractive character. I also think it has to do with the immortality of the character and that we don’t have, he is always resurrected, in the matter of movies it seems that they exterminate him, drive the stake, but from his ashes it always comes back to life,” he says.

This seductive character feeds on the idea of ​​being able to transmit his personality to other people by sucking their blood, turning him into another being like himself, stealing his will, his personality as human beings, that is, the vampirizes.

Within his research on this being, he found that Karl Marx he made mention of the vampire in his studies. “Capital is dead work that does not know how to feed itself like vampires, rather than sucking up living work and that lives longer the more work it sucks”, thus, the idea of ​​squeezing, appropriating the person or personality of other beings comes by tradition from previous centuries.

“Is he character that does not go out of style, in all times it is always interpreted in different ways, it becomes a genre that is always latent and present in all times”, he expresses.

Did you know?

Theodosia Burr Goodman, better known as Theda Bara, is the first femme fatale in cinema. With her, the term “Vamp” is born, which refers to a vampiress, and portrays a seductive woman who traps men.

The story of Bram Stoker is inspired by Vlad Tepes, a 15th-century prince of Wallachia, who was known for his cruelty during his rule and his bloodthirsty battles against enemies.

You can also read: The origin and myths of vampires are revealed in a new exhibition that shows evidence of their existence

Vampires: between terror and seduction in the cinema – Indigo Report