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When Harry met Sally concludes with Harry running to tell Sally about her annoying sandwich-ordering habits.  Before plowing down zombies on the Walking Dead, Andrew Lincoln attempted to cuckold his newly wedded best friend with cue cards and boom box Christmas carolers in Love Actually.

Apparently this tripe is what passes for romance. What happened to cinema? 70 years ago, romance was Rick telling Ilsa to get out of his dreams and onto a plane, literally minutes before killing someone. Things have gone downhill since Casablanca. The following are some of the more charmingly romantic moments in cinema that don’t resort to sweet nothing’s and smooches….

 

10. Dracula (1931)

Music 5 Dracula

In 1922, legendary German filmmaker F.W. Murnau made Nosferatu, the longest surviving vampire film that was not-so-loosely based on Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula. Outraged at this copyright infringement, Stoker nearly succeeded in ridding the world of every surviving copy of the film. Luckily, copies of Murnau’s horror movie still exist.

A decade later, the rights to Stoker’s novel were legally obtained and Dracula was made into a feature film by Freaks directed Tod Browning. Starring a pre-Plan 9 Bela Lugosi, Dracula follows a caped weirdo with an Eastern European accent as he befriends a wealthy family while out at the theater. After feasting on the family friend Lucy, Dracula sticks around to stalk the young daughter Mina.

Infatuated with her, Dracula breaks into Mina’s room at night and sucks blood from her neck. He later attacks her outside of her house and subsequently combines his blood with hers, making her his possession as she slowly morphs into a vampire. It sounds violent and misogynist, but it’s really no different than Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.

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This article was first posted on February 14, 2013