House of Dracula is one of those horror classics that don’t lose their charm entirely despite the advance in visual effects the big screen is spoiling us with.
It brings back together some of most memorable Universal monsters: Frankenstein, Wolfman and Dracula, not necessarily in order of appearance.
The actors make their characters believable, Dracula is not simply evil but is also dedicated; Wolfman cannot control his transformation but does not excuse his actions.
The kindly old professor does some fascinating research in the movie and is more reminiscent of the gentler Bulwer image from Dracula 1931, than the less appealing, to my mind at least, militant vampire hunter, Van Helsing, who seemingly has been getting only younger with each Hollywood retelling.
I must say that the kindly old professor image is more appealing to me, and the way he was portrayed in the House of Dracula, less stereotypical, more divided, was an even more brilliant stroke.
Yet another striking feature I found memorable in this movie, is its usage of the Christian cross. It is known in the vampire lore of course to defend against vampiric hypnosis and direct physical attacks. But I felt upon watching the 1945 horror movie that its usage was almost ironic, with a certain person rather unconsciously touching the cross to protect themselves against who they actually were(I am using the gender neutral description to avoid spoilers of course!).
The movie presented a few delightful twists, with the minor characters, understandably receiving lesser development. Though even among the lesser characters, one was charmingly reminiscent of the conspicuously displaced Renfield.
Overall, I would recommend at least for some of the scenes in the movie to be watched and it is available for free on youtube.