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Lips of Blood
As the adult film industry took root in 1970s, audiences soon found a plethora of sexually explicit movies vying for their attention. In comparison, the films of Jean Rollin looked somewhat old-fashioned. They didn't provide enough skin and sex to satisfy the raincoat crowd and the horror they provided looked tame in comparison to movies such as Texas Chainsaw Massacre. As a result, Rollin's Lips of Blood, released in 1975, was a flop at the boxoffice. But among fans of Rollin, Lips of Blood is highly regarded. In The Overlook Film Encyclopedia: Horror, Phil Hardy descirbes Lips of Blood as a "beautifully macabre poem."

Jean-Lou Philippe plays a man obsessed with discovering the location of a castle that he remembers from his childhood. At a party, he sees a photograph that looks surprisingly similar to the castle. He wants to find out more about the castle, but no one can help him. The woman who took the photograph was sworn to secrecy. After Philippe pushes her for an answer, she turns up dead. As Philippe continues to search for clues, he unwittingly releases several female vampires from their tombs. The vampires, clothed only in sheer veils, soon begin stalking the streets of Paris and claiming victims.

The imagery provided by Rollin's camera frequently veers toward the banal, especially as the vampires prowl the streets like nude models lost from a photo shoot. Only their absurdly long fangs convey any menace. But the presence of Annie Brilland as the girl in white from Philippe's dreams lends the movie a compelling sense of dislocation. He remembers her from his childhood. She comforted him at a remote castle after he became lost. When he encounters her on the streets of Paris--over twenty years later--she looks exactly the same as he remembers her.

After Lips of Blood failed to generate much interest at the boxoffice, Rollin moved toward hardcore pornography. He would soon forgo horror films for over three years while focusing on sexploitation quickies.


Go to:
The Shiver of the Vampires
Requiem for a Vampire
The Demoniacs
Lips of Blood
The Night of the Hunted
The Living Dead Girl