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Fascination [DVD]

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Mander's obvious skill is in coaxing appealing performances out of all his actors – from the three leads, through supporting actors (special mention for Kay Hammond as Gwenda's airhead girlfriend) and even down to the walk-ons – the grievously disappointed drunken toff, for instance, is a classic bit of comedy business. Following a history of releases on VHS and DVD by Redemption, reasonable at the time but not particularly holding up nowadays in the hi-def era, Stateside company Kino have teamed with Redemption to thankfully remaster this (along with several other of the director's movies) in high definition - image quality jumps significantly on the Blu-ray, with strengthened colour schemes and wonderfully naturalistic detail without being excessively sharp; indeed, on occasions there is an authentic haziness during certain sequences. Elsewhere a group of bandits have robbed some poor sod carrying a fortune in gold and are about to make off with it when an argument splits their group and Marc makes off with the bag having betrayed his fellow criminals. On the morning of their feeding shindig, Marc (Jean Marie Lemaire), a suave professional thief, just so happens to require shelter in their cheteau from his recently-spurned partners in crime.

Finishing off this awesome package are the trailers to the five films initially released under Kino's Rollin series and a very attractive booklet (unfortunately the same as the one included with the other discs, but welcome nonetheless). Good extras too including a booklet, trailers and Mondo Macabro documentary on French horror/Jean Rollin. Rollin is brilliant at creating a hypnotic, dreamlike atmosphere, and he has a real feel for surreal imagery. One of Rollins better known films, Fascination opens with three lovely ladies in a barn, drinking the blood of an ox, which will apparently cure them of an anemic condition from which they all suffer from.

Fascination is often described as a vampire film yet, like few other horror films, it is actually about blood fetishism. However, the easy to follow story with the way the entire thing looks makes it an excellent midnight flick for those who want a big 70s style feel in a sex horror film or if you want an exploitation film that concentrates mainly on visuals. Virgins and Vampires”, a 24 minute profile of Rollin, with an extensive interview, from the TV series Eurotika! French director Jean Rollin's film could take one step backwards and become gothic softcore porn, while it could also take a step forward and become a complete horror film.

By the time she worked with Hitchcock, Carroll had been successfully acting in films for seven years, her early body of work coinciding with an incredibly exciting period in film history – the transition from silent film to sound. There's plenty to look at throughout with the inside, outside, atmosphere, and the plentiful nude scenes. Instead of a blood-soaked, lavish blood-drinking spectacle, Fascination becomes rather nuanced and transfixing in its simple, drawing demeanor. It's an interesting experience to navigate through Rollin's individualistic style -- especially if you're expecting something completely different than what he offers. Meanwhile the other bandits are keeping a safe distance from the castle effectively preventing Marc from leaving while waiting for their chance to launch an attack.After a haunting, cryptic opening in which several well-to-do French ladies gather at a farm where animals are being slaughtered and daintily sip glasses filled with blood, the story follows the misadventures of blond hoodlum Jean-Marie Lemaire, who holds up two young women (Brigitte Lahaie and Franca Mai) at an isolated chateau. The Seventh Seal (software uniformly simulated HDR) , The Maltese Falcon (software uniformly simulated HDR) . This is director Jean Rollin at his best; visual delights, sensual lesbian love-making, the beautiful Brigitte Lahaie as a scythe-wielding avenger, and a group of castle-dwelling bourgeois women addicted to drinking blood. Certain items can take longer to source than the estimated week, particularly during busy trading periods and may take longer to arrive at our warehouse. Yet there's something about the feasting elements that blend well with its ideas, though all the uniqueness in the world cannot shelter a film so light on story with the plotholes and poor supportive acting structure that it exhibits.

Please note that this isn't a new anamorphic, but has been confirmed by Marc Morris as being the same transfer as the non-anamorphic DVD but put through an aspect ratio converter. For items that are dispatched using our standard service, we ask that you wait 14 days from the date of dispatch before reporting any items as undelivered. If its sexy vampires you are looking for then you may be better off with Hammer film or something else because under a better director this may have been worthwhile. So for the 'true' anamorphic transfer, the Dutch release would seem to be the best, whereas the UK Dark Side release contains the best range of extras. Fascination is presented in a brand-new transfer from the original film elements in its as-exhibited theatrical aspect ratio.Along with The Living Dead Girl, this film remains the director's purest and most successful of the feminine mystique channeled directly through the Gothic tradition. The last page of the booklet contains a brief note from Nigel Wingrove regarding his early 90s efforts to bring Rollin's films to the masses. Some erotic component was usually imposed on Rollin by meddling producers, forcing him to add ill-fitting sex scenes into his productions, but here – more so than anywhere else in his filmography – the erotic scenes feel truly organic to the story. Jean Rollins films are not for everybody - they're trippy, dreamlike and almost surreal at times and frequently involve graphic violence coupled with kinky sex, all qualities that are bound to turn off less adventurous viewers. There is apparently also a heavily cut German DVD on the market, with a classification lower than FSK-18.

Thus, the film plays more like a pastoral version of the blood-bathing Elizabeth Bathory saga with the eroticism aspects pushed up to full throttle (a la Borowczyk's Immoral Tales). R0 America- Redemption/Salvation - No cuts known (81:49 NTSC, excluding the modern Redemption Introduction. Sure, Rollin uses it as an interesting device, but it exists, of course, to accentuate the sensuality of its lusciously-photographed sex scenes.

To calculate the overall star rating and percentage breakdown by star, we don’t use a simple average. Detail is vastly improved, from the opening shot of the iron candle holder to the pores visible on the skin present frequently throughout the film. Like so many of the director's work, this film was made with a low budget and some will take issue with the fact that this does show in the production values from time to time, but if you've appreciative of the wholly unique atmosphere that only Rollin could create and don't mind a plot that isn't necessarily concerned with narrative structure so much as it is with ambience and fever dream set pieces, Fascination absolutely deserves a look.

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