20 March 2011


This review is part of the Film Club
from Final Girl, the blog of all blogs!


Original Title:
Et mourir de plaisir

German Title:
...und vor Lust zu sterben

France / Italy, 1960
Director: Roger Vadim

Note: "Blood And Roses" is one of countless 60s horror movies which are not yet released on DVD - though in the USA it's available on-demand,
sadly not on amazon.com (which I can enter by proxy as an Austrian) but on Netflix (which I can't enter by proxy for whatever reason).

So I decided to roam the internet and luckily, I stumbled upon 2 VHS-rips in acceptable quality.
The original French version with English subtitles
and the cut US version which differs pretty much from the original.

French Version, 84 min.

A highly impressive, intelligent and mesmerizing kinda-lesbian-vampire-tale, quite rightly considered a masterpiece. 
The romantic but tragic story is wonderfully written, developed and told, due to a haunting and slow-paced script.

The beautiful rural settings are captured in wonderful shots and images, accentuated with a terrific soundtrack consisting of pompous violins, melancholic harps and depressing pianos.
The acting is superb, great performances from the director's wife Annette Vadim, Mel Ferrer and Elsa Martinelli.

Highlights: the fireworks scene, the incredibly atmospheric scene with Carmilla walking to the crypt, the killing of Lisa, Carmilla's bleeding heart, the infamous and outstanding dream sequence and the shattering ending
(plus: the funny scene with the 2 kids saying their prayers).

A brilliant movie, highly recommended to fans of "Picnic At Hanging Rock" and "Martin".


US Version, 74 Min

Far from being as good as the original, mainly because of an added narration that destroys every single bit of atmosphere, unnecessarily added screams and shots of dead roses, and many scenes that were cut or at least shortened.

Even if I would have seen this version first, I still would not like it as much as the French version.



  1. hey, i'd like to know about this film. lesbian-themed horror is good most of the time. it's interesting to know about the different versions n stuff.

  2. "Carmilla's bleeding heart..." I totally didn't see it that way; what a great observation. I also didn't know that I was watching a truncated version. Thanks for the insights.


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