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Author Topic: Lips of Blood / Levres de Sang (1975, Jean Rollin)  (Read 3130 times)


  • Cane Arrabbiato
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    • CineVentures

At a party promoting a new perfume, Frederic (co-writer Jean Loup Philippe) sees a background image in one of the ads that triggers a childhood memory of being lost and protected by a mysterious young woman (Catherine Brilland).  His mother (Nathalie Perry) tries to discourage his attempts to delve into the past (she is seen in the opening credits sequence supervising the placement of four coffins containing living beings in a crypt guarded by a cross).  Frederic meets up with the photographer who promises to meet him later with the information on the location.  Frederic wanders to a cinema (with a poster for LE VAMPIRE NUE - http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film2/DVDReviews37/nude_vampire.htm - but actually showing RAPE OF THE VAMPIRE - http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film2/DVDReviews33/rape_of_the_vampire.htm) and sees the woman from his memory.  He follows her apparition to a cemetery and lets loose the four vampire women on the city.  Frederic goes to rendezvous with the photographer and finds her dead.  He then barely escapes some gun-wielding thugs and runs into an older woman posing as the woman from his memory.  He is then locked up in an asylum by his mother who wants to prevent him from discovering her secrets but two of the vampire women disguised as nurses (which might have inspired the image of Pinhead and partner in surgical garb in an unused sequence from HELLRAISER II) free him.  As Frederic's investigation leads him to the beach and castle location from his memory and the woman of his dreams, his mother dispatches her thugs to take out the vampire women.

Although this was one of Rollin's least successful films (next to THE IRON ROSE - http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film2/DVDReviews32/la_rose_de_fer.htm), it has more in common with his action-oriented vampire films (the first half of RAPE OF THE VAMPIRE and THE NUDE VAMPIRE) versus his style-focused works like REQUIEM FOR A VAMPIRE and SHIVER OF THE VAMPIRES.  It also has in common with LE VAMPIRE NUE a modern setting before their castle/chateau-set climaxes (RAPE, REQUIEM, and SHIVER were also set in modern times but they completely immersed their characters in the past with their gothic settings). 

As has been noted on other boards, Encore's three disc set has some problems.  Its cropped from 1.66:1 to 1.78:1 (with anamorphic enhancement) so hairlines are occasionally cropped off (especially the tall Philippe).  It is also missing the opening credits (though not the background images themselves).  The added blue tinting day-for-night tinting is more effective in some sequences than others.  The OOP Image DVD in in its original aspect ratio and more satisfying in that respect but the extras on the Encore disc make it worth the purchase (interviews with Philippe, Perry, and Serge Rollin who plays Philippe's character in the flashbacks) as well as selected scenes audio commentary by Rollin, a featurette on Rollin's Dieppe location, his short film "Les Amours Jaunes", and an extraordinary 64 page booklet with production background and photographs).  The only thing not present on the set are the XXX scenes from the version "Suck Me Vampire" which Rollin prepared for the producer to recoup some of the money put into the original film (deleted scenes are included on the Encore discs of DEMONIAQUES, REQUIEM FOR A VAMPIRE, LES FRISSON DES VAMPIRES - though not all of them - and NIGHT OF THE HUNTED including XXX scenes shot for that film).

DVDBeaver Comparison: http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film2/DVDReviews38/lips_of_blood.htm
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