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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "The Rape of the Vampire" or "Viol du Vampire" or "Reine des vampires" or "Queen of the Vampires")

 

directed by Jean Rollin
France 1967

 

Three strangers arrive at a chateau inhabited by four women believed to be vampires. But are they vampires or are they under the hypnotic machinations of an old man? Rollin shot the first part of this film as a short subject to be billed with an American vampire film bought by a distributor that just over an hour (it too was designed for double billing). His producers were impressed with what he accomplished with next to nothing and asked him to expand the film to feature length. Thus, the first half hour (part one) is an intriguing short that makes the most of its found locations, make-shift production design, and available lighting (and a very early example of a turntable effect around two arguing actors to heighten the intensity of the scene). The second half (which necessitates resurrecting several of the characters that were killed at the end of the first and introduces the Queen of the Vampires played by Jacqueline Seiger (who was an instructor at Felix Guattari's anti-psychology clinic at the time). Lacking the structure of the first part, the near-plotless remaining hour allows Rollin to cram in an entire serial's worth of car chases, mad doctors, vampires, fist fights, and gun fire as well as several more arresting - and iconic in the Rollin oeuvre - images to bring the short to feature length. Part 2 features also Olivier Martin (the protagonist of Rollin's LE VAMPIRE NUE - forthcoming from Redemption USA) and, despite his large role in the part, an uncredited Jean-Loup Philippe (co-writer and star of Rollin's LEVRES DE SANG).

Eric Cotenas

Posters

Theatrical Release: May 27th, 1968  - France

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Comparison:

Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC vs. Encore (Limited Edition 2 Disc Set) - Region 0 - PAL vs. Redemption - Region FREE - Blu-ray

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for all the Screen Caps!

1) Encore Entertainment - Region 1 - PAL - LEFT

2) Encore (Limited Edition 2 Disc Set) - Region 0 - PAL  - MIDDLE

3) Redemption - Region FREE - Blu-ray - RIGHT

 

Box Covers

 

 

Distribution

Image Entertainment

Region 1 - NTSC

Encore
Region 0 - PAL

Redemption USA

Region FREE - Blu-ray

Runtime 1:30:42 (4% PAL speedup) 1:30:42 (4% PAL speedup) 1:35:16.734
Video

1.62:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.46 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

1.78:1 Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 6.98 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 47,433,307,341 bytes

Feature: 25,971,316,160 bytes

Video Bitrate: 26.93 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate:

 

Image Entertainment

 

Bitrate:

 

Encore (Limited Edition 2 Disc Set)

 

Audio French Dolby Digital 1.0 mono

French Dolby Digital 2.0 mono

LPCM Audio French 1536 kbps 2.0 / 48 kHz / 1536 kbps / 16-bit
Subtitles English, none English, Dutch, German, none English, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Image Entertainment

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen letterboxed - 1.62:1

Edition Details:
• Gallery of Stills and Promotional Materials
• Theatrical Trailer (4:24)

DVD Release Date: 19 March 2002
Amaray

Chapters 16
 

Release Information:
Studio: Encore

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 1.78:1

Edition Details:
• Disc One:
• Audio Commentary by Jean Rollin
• Disc Two:
• The Story of Nuit des Horlanges (22:29)
• Trailer (4:23)
• Still Gallery
• Interview with Jacqueline Sieger (14:07)
• Interview with Alain-Yves Beaujour (20:04)
• Interview with François Tusques (13:30
• Censored Scenes (2:24)
• Trailers for Les Demoniaques (2:57)
• Shiver of the Vampires (3:59); Night of the Hunted (3:16)
• La Morte Vivante (1:24)
• Booklet on the film (28 pages)
 

DVD Release Date: 20 October 2007
Digipack

Chapters 8

Release Information:
Studio: Redemption

Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1

1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 47,433,307,341 bytes
Feature: 25,971,316,160 bytes
Video Bitrate: 26.93 Mbps
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

• Introduction by Jean Rollin (2:45 in 1080P)

Fragments of Payment Under the Sand Documentary (23:46)

Alternate Scene (2:08)

• Jean Rollin Interview (4:26 in 1080P)
• Jean-Loup Philippe Interview (9:17)

• 16-page booklet 'The Cinema of Jean Rollin's
 

Blu-ray Release Date: May 29th, 2012
Standard Blu-ray Case

Chapters 10

 

Comments:

NOTE: These Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

 

ADDITION: Redemption - Region FREE - Blu-ray (May 12'): Of course, I am only guessing but those DVDs look brightness boosted to me. The Redemption Blu-ray version of Rape of the Vampire seems dark to me - but I don't have a clue what this filmed looked like theatrically. Detail rises on the 1080P transfer. I thought it looked reasonable in-motion - with some scenes being fairly impressive. Hopefully the captures will give you an idea of the Blu-ray appearance.

 

Audio is original French in a competent uncompressed linear PCM track. There are optional English subtitles.

 

Extras have the brief Introduction by Jean Rollin running less than 3-minutes and a 24-minute documentary entitled 'Fragments of Payment Under the Sand'. Plus there is a 2-minute alternate scene and less than 5-minutes with Rollin again as well as a 9-minute segment of a Jean-Loup Philippe Interview. The package contains a 16-page booklet.

 

I kinda liked this Rollin flic - as usual, goofy as heck but the imagery in the first half set an intriguing stage. This brand of horror may appeal to some - but not all. I am very slowly warming to this guy's 'style'. The Blu-ray gave me a modest HD presentation.    

 - Gary Tooze

***

ON THE DVDs: Although the OAR is 1.66:1, the new Encore DVD is letterboxed at anamorphic 1.78:1 yet nothing seems to be missing from the image. In fact, the Encore transfer reveals a sliver more info on the sides and is sharper thanks to the higher resolution inherent in 16:9 transfers. The image has actually been stretched slightly from 1.66:1. The effect is not damaging in long and medium shots but faces look squat in close-up (especially the bewitching Ms. Seiger as the Queen of the Vampires who far outclasses anything Anne Rice could come up with). Anamorphic 1.66:1 should not be an alien concept to any company that cares about preserving films. The lavish extras for such a marginal film (and their 6 previous Rollin releases) suggest that they do indeed care about them.

Interviews are provided with "La Reine des Vampires" Jaqueline Sieger, composer (of part 2) Francois Tusques, and co-writer Alain-Yves Boujour. The interview with Sieger was shot in Rollin's apartment and he makes an appearance. She mentions that she made most of her own costumes (inspired by some of poster artist Philippe Druillet's artwork). The feature length audio commentary is subtitled in English (some of the previous releases have had Rollin doing selected scene commentary in English). "The Story of la Nuit des Horlanges" is an interview piece on Rollin's latest film (also known as La Nuit Transfigurée).

As with the previous Encore Rollin releases, a lengthy production essay by Rollin on the making of the film, lavishly illustrated with rare behind the scenes stills, is included as a separate booklet (these alone are worth the prices of the sets).

With a sharper transfer and good extras, the only drawback is the aspect ratio but owners of the Image R1 or Redemption R2 DVDs should not consider that a deal breaker (especially if their televisions can rescale the image).

 - Eric Cotenas

 


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Image Entertainment - Region 1 - NTSC - LEFT vs. Encore (Limited Edition 2 Disc Set) - Region 0 - PAL - RIGHT)


 

 

 

Redemption - Region FREE - Blu-ray

 


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Screen Captures

 

1) Encore Entertainment - Region 1 - PAL - TOP

2) Encore (Limited Edition 2 Disc Set) - Region 0 - PAL  - MIDDLE

3) Redemption - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 Subtitle sample

 


1) Encore Entertainment - Region 1 - PAL - TOP

2) Encore (Limited Edition 2 Disc Set) - Region 0 - PAL  - MIDDLE

3) Redemption - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) Encore Entertainment - Region 1 - PAL - TOP

2) Encore (Limited Edition 2 Disc Set) - Region 0 - PAL  - MIDDLE

3) Redemption - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 


1) Encore Entertainment - Region 1 - PAL - TOP

2) Encore (Limited Edition 2 Disc Set) - Region 0 - PAL  - MIDDLE

3) Redemption - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 


1) Encore Entertainment - Region 1 - PAL - TOP

2) Encore (Limited Edition 2 Disc Set) - Region 0 - PAL  - MIDDLE

3) Redemption - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 


1) Encore Entertainment - Region 1 - PAL - TOP

2) Encore (Limited Edition 2 Disc Set) - Region 0 - PAL  - MIDDLE

3) Redemption - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 


1) Encore Entertainment - Region 1 - PAL - TOP

2) Encore (Limited Edition 2 Disc Set) - Region 0 - PAL  - MIDDLE

3) Redemption - Region FREE - Blu-ray - BOTTOM

 

 

More Blu-ray Captures

 


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Sound:

Blu-ray

Extras: Blu-ray

 
Box Covers

 

 

Distribution

Image Entertainment

Region 1 - NTSC

Encore
Region 0 - PAL

Redemption USA

Region FREE - Blu-ray