Fantastique French-style. Jean Rollin, Roger Vadim, and more.
- Joined: February 19th, 2004, 9:18 pm
I was watching this again last night. Every time I watch this film it feels like a different film. In general it feels like a strange meeting of brilliant minds. Alcanthus' music punctuating the whole thing. It's as if I'm half dreaming but the dream is never the same. I had forgotten the conversation about Isis disguised as the Virgin Mary. I had forgotten the distinction Isolde makes between herself as a wandering vampire and the gentlemen of the castle as Bourgeois vampires. Other things I remembered but not quite as clearly. The skull in the fish bowl with fiery eyes. The shifting realities having a similar feel to the shifting realities of a dream. There are moments that are ridiculous and absurd and which clarify why Rollin was so little admired. The nudity, at certain moments, seems like pure lip-service paid to the commercial realities of trying to find an audience for a totally experimental movie.
I love that these films by Rollin are such a combination of flavours. I love that the gothic castles, broken statues and graveyards will always lead, at some point, to a cold looking beach with rolling waves. I love that there will be moments of visual surprise eclipsing most surreal cinema while at the same time, on the surface, there is a plot that seems almost conventional (honeymoon results in virgin wife becoming a vampire bride).
Odd to think that this film lived for so many years through a few stills, some critical descriptions and that poster by Philippe Druillet whose strangely complicated and visually involved stories (Lone Sloane, Salammbo) I had followed in the pages of Heavy Metal magazine. Those images and ideas haunted me as a child and I never believed I would be able to see this film or any of the others by Rollin. It was Redemption who came to the rescue when they released a version (with smudged colours) on VHS at that strange time when the impossible seemed to be happening.
Suffice to say that it is still a film worth watching. The daft bits are just as daft as ever and I found myself thinking "why am I watching this silly film" only to think, in the space of a minute or two, that I was in fact watching one of the most amazing films ever shot.
- Joined: January 29th, 2008, 3:56 am
A beautiful text and thoughts, Jago Turner.
Meanwhile, "Les démoniaques" is out from Wicked Vision in a 103 minutes version (longest version worldwide according to the label).
Previously unreleased in German language countries, it got the title "Dienerinnen des Satans" ("Servants of Satan").
I don't know yet what's supposed to be longer than in previous versions, but out of the four versions I've owned before, each one contained material not found
in the others (they were Redemption's first DVD, the Encore DVD SE, the old dutch VHS tape from Video for Pleasure with additional sex scenes but missing the prologue
and an NTSC tape in Spanish language said to contain some different material and a different soundtrack which I haven't even checked out as of yet).
- Joined: April 10th, 2002, 4:43 am
Here is a decent review of the Wicked Blu
http://www.blu-ray.com/movies/The-Shive ... 66/#Review
Nice someone is taking a fresh crack at this catalog, even if I am not crazy about the different color timing on the remaster.