Review: Dracula Untold

If you have read any of my other reviews you know that I am extremely critical of Hollywood for not having the courage to use Islam anytime the plot requires a foreign enemy, even when it is entirely justified in doing so.

Tom Clancy’s “ The Sum of all fears, for example. Instead of using the novel’s Muslim terrorists as the bad guy, a gutless Hollywood shifted the enemy to some fringe criminal Russian gang. Making absolutely no sense to why a drug smuggling, gun running, criminal enterprise with no political motivations would want to kill thousands of Americans to make a statement.

Or, the 2013 “Olympus has Fallen,” an otherwise earnest suspense ridden attempt if they hadn’t laughably used North Koreans instead of a much more believable Muslim terror group as the culprit in this film. How is North Korea going to mount an attack like that without some overwhelming presence here in the United States? Answer, they won’t, but Muslims have desire, the hatred and the possible underground community to attempt something like that. And, some of those Muslims live here right alongside of us. They are our neighbors, they work in our industries, and send their children to our schools.

But, of course, for Hollywood political correctness would never assume to criticize Islam in that way. Russians and North Koreans, but not the Muslims, the only group to have seriously threaten the west in the last 25-30 years.

I was pleasantly surprised to find that isn’t the case with the manufactured vampire movie, “Dracula Untold,” an Irish production starring Luke Evens in the title role with Gary Shore directing. Released in 2014 it can be seen now on Netflix.

The movie builds the prequel to Bram Stoker’s 19th century Dracula character, using Islam as a bad guy. Historically there was some interaction, sometimes violently between the peoples of that part of Eastern Europe and the rising spread of the new Ottoman empire, So, it had some historical precedence. As far as I know so far the Muslims have remained silent on this movie’s premise.

Years ago the film “300” was severely criticized by the Iranians for using Persian history as a nemesis even though this was before the onslaught of Islam. Their arguments fell largely onto deaf ears because this is the history of that particular event. The mighty Persian army was held off by 300 Spartan soldiers at Thermopylae almost 2500 years ago.

The laughable reaction the Iranians got from the rest of the world could be the reason the Turks, the historical descendants of the Ottomans, are remaining silent, a little surprising especially since they are ruled by a big mouth dictator who is turning his country into the Islamic version of the Third Reich. And, maybe the protectors of Islam in the west, i.e., CAIR thought better of it since there is some historical context for this movie also, and they took such a PR bashing on “300.”

The fact is that the director and writers of this film could have gone the way of productions like “The Sum of all Fears,” or “Olympus has Fallen” and used any bad guy for the antagonist, any made up warlord trying to expand his realm since the story is obscure anyway, but they didn’t, they used the rise of Ottoman Islam.

The cowardice of Hollywood that hides behind political correctness could learn a thing or two from this production effort. Islam and Christianity have been opposed to each other since Mohammad invented his religion 1400 years ago. The clash between them flared up from time to time and we should be cognizant of that history. “Dracula Untold” pays that history well.

When the Sultan demands 1000 boys from Vlad the Impaler’s kingdom including Vlad’s own son for his Janissary companies, Vlad was powerless to stop him. The Ottomans at the time were on the rise and were sucking up Christian kingdoms moving every closer from Eastern to Western Europe.
Janissaries were foreign soldiers used by the Turks to fight in their front lines so fewer actual Turkish soldiers would fall in battle. The mentality was not unlike the Jihadists today who use women and children to fall in front of them so they can use it, to save as many of their soldiers as possible, to say nothing of propaganda value. Accusing Israel, the United States and other western soldiers of killing without regard to the innocent has gone a long way in international public opinion. Earlier incarnations of this method to save the empire’s soldiers, the 15th century Ottomans at least put weapons and trained the soldiers to fight, even if they were kept as slaves.

Vlad meets with the Sultan, tries to convince him otherwise, but the Turkish ruler explains that he needs this for his Vienna campaign. Historians of the era will take notice that Vienna didn’t happen for at least 200 years later than this timeline. Historical mistakes notwithstanding Vlad is left with no choice because his much weaker forces will be defeated.

It is here where he makes his pact with a monstrous cave dwelling blood sucking entity to become the vampire that folklore history has traced to him. Going through this transformation he goes out to the battlefield and defeats this forward advance of the Muslims singlehandedly. He then turns most of his guards and some of their women into vampires and they defeat the entire Sultan’s army. The Muslims never had a chance against this western advanced literary folklore, an irony I am sure is lost on them.

It was good to see a Muslim enemy defeated so handedly on the battlefield even if it was a 15th century fabricated tale. We should not be intimidated by Islamic juvenile whining, being insulted by the slightest fairy tale. Draw cartoons, make movies, tell stories that show the despicable part of their history. If our artistic community does not reflect the world around us then it will eventually lose its influence in that very same world. Wake up Hollywood, take a cue from “Dracula Untold.”