The Home of the Creative Mind

Welcome to PooBahSpiel, the online voice and home of the creative mind of Mark Monlux, Illustrator Extraordinaire. Prepare yourself for an endless regaling of art directly from the hand of this stellar artist. And brace yourself against his mighty wind of pontification. Updates are kinda weekly and show daily sketches, current projects, and other really nifty stuff.

Monday, October 3, 2011

The Comic Critic Reviews Nosferatu

 I just can’t get past how blatantly the creators of this film stole from Bram Stoker’s Dracula. When I started writing this review I did know that Bram Stoker’s widow took the studio that created this film to court for copyright infringement and won. But I did not know that part of the settlement was that every reel of Nosferatu was to be burned. The film only survived because another form of infringement occurred during international distribution.

The image of Count Orlok, the vampire in the film, remains a cinematic icon that still fascinates audiences. Directors know this and have paid homage to Orlok in a number of films over the years. But none is greater than in the movie Shadow of the Vampire from 2000. We’re treated to a scenario where, while doing research for his film, the director discovers an actual vampire and entices it to play the role of Orlok. I’ve always found it ironic that so many acts of derivation would follow the first unlawful one done by the creators of Nosferatu. But to see a movie about the making of the original film in which the inspirational source of the vampire was not Dracula, but an actual vampire, brought irony to a whole new level.

Nosferatu is just one of many films that will be showing at the Ellensburg Film Festival. If you live over in Eastern Washington I hope to see you there next weekend.

I know you are all excited to see what I drew at the 24 Hour Comic Challenge. I will be posting the results tomorrow. In the meantime I encourage you to check out James Stowe's work from the 24 Hour Comic Challenge. He and I had a gentleman's bet going on who would finish first. And it was very close this year. Very close. But Stowe beat me by posting his comic (done in full color, writer Kevin Freitas) on the Internet just a few moments before I plopped my 24 pages down and announced I was done. Way to go, Stowe!


Kenneth Huey said...

I happen to be, like Susan Sontag (!!), a big fan of SHADOW OF THE VAMPIRE director E. Elias Merhige's experimental movie, BEGOTTEN. Ever seen it? I like to call it the cinematic equivalent of Lou Reed's METAL MACHINE MUSIC.

ewp said...

Nosferatu review was very interesting. Thank you for the lawsuit history and the fascinating focus on hairstyles. Great job, Mark.