Nina Auerbach, “Carmilla’s Progress” Our Vampires, Ourselves. Chicago: U of Chicago P. Print
Auerbach’s book is a detailed examination of the vampire narrative, starting with early forms such as "Christabel" and continues through the adaptations of today. Her book is broken into four parts, with Carmilla and its respective adaptations being analyzed in part one. In the section, “Carmilla’s Progress”, Auerbach discusses the idea that the only thing to survive from Le Fanu’s narrative is a muted expression of lesbians, no longer sympathetically portrayed by now reworked into a male pornographic fantasy (53). Auerbach discusses and examines this idea throughout film adaptations, starting with Vampyr (1932). She moves onto Blood and Roses (1960), The Vampire Lovers (1972), Daughters of Darkness (1971), and finishing with The Hunger (1983). Auerbach examines the way Carmillla has been portrayed, showing the idea that Le Fanu’s novel has become more of a decoration instead of the overall theme. She discusses the idea of a commercialized Hollywood style of film, and an insertion of a male lover in most adaptations. Most of the films are told through the eyes of the male lover and an aspect of the feminine love interest is lost. Auerbach uses other scholars to solidify t her diagnosis of the adaptations, such as Weiss’s research Vampires and Violets. Auerbach’s argument is easily understood and continues to examine this process with the more popular vampire narrative: Dracula.
David Huckvale. “Twins of Evil: an investigation into the aesthetics of film music” Popular Music, 9.1. (Jan 1990): 1-35. Cambridge University Press
In this article, Huckvale breaks down the musical score and how it applies to the genres of this finale film in the Hammer Horror trilogy that is based upon Le Fanu’s Carmillla. Huckvale establishes the idea that music constructs a coherent and continuous space as well as the score setting the atmosphere for the genre of Gothic Horror. The composer, Harry Roberston, develops a theme that resonates throughout all three films in the trilogy. Huckvale focuses on the score from Twins of Evil. He connects musical terminology and events that connects the score to the genre of Gothic Horror. He shows that the musical triad is what fully sets the score into that genre. He then discusses themes that establishes each of the characters. The Countess Mircalla is established behind strong chords with strings and woodwinds, reflecting back upon Romantic era composition. Huckvale notes that Robertson uses influences from Romantic era to establish his themes. He then notes a “joke” that Robertson uses a “Cowboy and Indians” theme under the main male character of the film, the Puritain hunter Gustav Weil. The western theme, found throughout the brass, controls the opening of the movie and continues throughout the film whenever the character is on screen. The western theme is over the conventions of Romantic music which establishes that this theme is making fun of Puritan hunters from the Horror genre. Huckvale establishes his thesis at the end of the article after breaking down the opening sequence of the film and doesn’t explain most of the musical terms. He expects the reader to come with a basic understanding of musical terminology and hits the ground running. He places pieces of the scores throughout the article, most of the falling after he has moved onto a new section or different piece. Huckvale uses direct quotes from the composer, from a private interview he had with Robertson, and uses other people from the musical field to describe certain events happening in the musical score. Without a basic understanding of music theory, the reader will be limited to what they can fully understand from this article. This article pushes forward the idea of Carmilla being a Romantic Gothic Horror text and establishes the film, Twins of Evil, as well.
Peter Swaab. “Un Film Vampirisé : Dreyer’s Vampyr.” Film Quarterly, Vol 62.4 (2009): 56-62. Academic Search Complete. Web. 10 Oct. 2014
Swaab discusses Carl Theodor Dreyer’s 1932 film Vampyr. The article focuses on the life of the film and the changes undergone during editing. In 2008 a two disc set was released with the uncut version of the film. The film was not accepted well and caused a loss financially and cause several changes to be made. The film was very violent and did not pass censorship ratings, ultimately a large portion of the film was removed. Dreyer imagined the film portraying a ruthless, violent and evil vampire but the end result was not this. There was a section of the film removed that portrayed a violence to a child. Vampyr focuses largely on relationships between old and young. Swaab provides several examples of children in the film, such as children singing, children in the film and the presence of childrens shoes. Something that had not previously been done as much in other vampire adaptations. Swaab also discusses the unreliable narrator and the mystery left from the film. Swaab questions whether the entire film was a dream / fantasy or an adventure tale. In the end of the article references Carmilla to the lustfulness portions of the film. Along the lines of most vampire adaptations, there is a sexualization in the vampires that follows the lines of Carmilla. Swaab ends his article referencing sexual desire, lesbians, incest and violence in relation to Le Fanu’s Carmilla.
J.M. Tyree. '“Warm-Blooded: True Blood and Let The Right One In.” Film Quarterly Vol 63.2 (2009): 31-37. Academic Search Complete. Web. 10 Oct. 2014
Tyree discusses the intimate nature of vampires in modern screen productions. Tyree uses examples ranging from The Lost Boys (1987) to Twilight (2008). The article mostly refers to the television series True Blood, the films Let The Right One In and Twilight but towards the end begins the connection with LeFanu’s tale of the lesbian vampire Carmilla (1872). The three main vampires in these texts are a new type of vampire that is not interested in the creation of their kind. Tyree looks at societies love interests and the need for them in modern media. Tyree discusses Twilight’s moral values of no sex before marriage, something not seen in earlier adaptions of vampire texts. Carmilla is compared to the 2008 film Let The Right One In mostly through the interest of friendship. Tyree notes LeFanu having Laura desire a new friend in a time of solitude. He also mentions Dracula’s use of the word friend for several Englishmen and for his books he possesses. It is shown that the interest of vampires throughout media seem to desire more than just blood from victims. Tyree hints towards a domestication of the vampire which is drawn from Franco Moretti’s 1982 article “The Dialectic of Fear” in which the vampire is a metaphor for capitalism. This article addresses the modern idea of vampires seeking comfort in mortals as well as adjusting to the romance of society. The article ends on the note of vampires saving their loved ones and finding other ways to curve their hunger and desires.