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(aka "Female Vampire" or "Les Avaleuses" or "Erotikill" or "La Comtesse Noire" )

 

directed by Jess Franco
France/Belgium 1973

 

When Countess Irina Karlstein (Lina Romay, COUNTESS PERVERSE) returns to the her ancestral home on the Portuguese island of Madeira, a series of murders of men and women drained of their life fluids attracts the attention of forensic scientist Dr. Roberts (director Jess Franco), occultist Dr. Orloff (Jean-Pierre Bouyxou, LIVING DEAD GIRL), and (separately) metaphysical poet Baron Rathony (Jack Taylor, PIECES). As Irina consumes more victims - among them a journalist (Anna Watican, DEMONIAQUES), a hotel masseur (Ramon Ardid, DORIANA GRAY), and an aristocratic dominatrix (Monica Swinn, THE DUKE OF BURGUNDY) - she becomes more despairing of her cursed existence until Rathony asks her to take him "behind the mists" which may result in his own death. After his orthodox adaptation of Bram Stoker's COUNT DRACULA and his more psychedelic improvisation VAMPYROS LESBOS which showcased the presence of muse Soledad Miranda (whose life was cut short by an accident on the Costa do Sol highway just as her career was about to take off), Franco paid his first cineamtic tribute to new muse Romay (who had already appeared in a number of smaller roles in Franco's films starting with THE SINISTER EYES OF DR. ORLOFF) with FEMALE VAMPIRE - also known as LA COMTESSE NOIRE, LES AVALEUSES (THE SWALLOWERS), and THE BARE BREASTED COUNTESS among other titles - a seminal film in Franco's and Romay's filmographies. Too uneven to be a masterpiece thanks to its endless sex scenes (of varying explicitude depending on the territory of release), the film is buoyed by Romay's mute performance as she wanders through the ghostly Portuguese landscapes (to which American ex-pat actor Taylor would return for a prominent role in Roman Polanski's THE NINTH GATE) to the mournful strains of Daniel White's theme music. The film was produced in two principal versions: a softcore/hardcore version in which Irina drinks the sexual secretions of her victims (the softcore cut of which was released to tape in the United States in an unauthorized version titled THE LOVES OF IRINA), and a "horror" version in which Irina bites the necks of her victims and drinks blood (released to tape in the US as EROTIKILL). The film also features Franco regular Alice Arno (HOW TO SEDUCE A VIRGIN) and Luis Barboo (THE EROTIC RITES OF FRANKENSTEIN) appears as Irina's mute servant.

Eric Cotenas

Posters

Theatrical Release: 24 January 1975 (Belgium)

Reviews                                                                          More Reviews                                                                 DVD Reviews

 

DVD Comparison:

Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC vs. RSR Multimedia - Region 2 - PAL vs. Maison Rouge / Screenbound - Region 2 - PAL

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for all the Screen Caps!

(Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - LEFT vs. RSR Multimedia - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Maison Rouge / Screenbound - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)

DVD Box Covers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Distribution

Image Entertainment

Region 0 - NTSC

RSR Multimedia
Region 2 - PAL
Maison Rouge / Screenbound
Region 2 - PAL
Runtime 1:40:16 1:35:40 (4% PAL speedup) 1:36:24 (4% PAL speedup)
Video

2.28:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 4.86 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

2.37:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.99 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

2.36:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 5.61 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

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

Bitrate:

 

Image Entertainment

 

Bitrate:

 

RSR Multimedia

 

Bitrate:

 

Maison Rouge / Screenbound

 

Audio English Dolby Digital 2.0 mono; French Dolby Digital 2.0 mono

English Dolby Digital 2.0 mono; French Dolby Digital 2.0 mono; Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 mono

English Dolby Digital 2.0 mono; French Dolby Digital 2.0 mono

Subtitles None none English, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Image Entertainment

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.28:1

Edition Details:
� Alternate Blood Drinking Scenes (16:9; 9:19)
� Theatrical Trailer (16:9; 1:17)

DVD Release Date: 8 August 2000
Amaray

Chapters 12
 

Release Information:
Studio: RSR Multimedia

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.37:1

Edition Details:
� Jess Franco Biography

 

DVD Release Date: 10 April 2005
Amaray

Chapters 12

Release Information:
Studio: Maison Rouge / Screenbound

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.36:1

Edition Details:
� 'Erotikill' horror version (16:9; 1:07:48 in English)
� 'Destiny in Soft Focus' interview with Jess Franco (16:9; 13:03)
� 'Words for Lina' interview with Jean-Pierre Bouyxou (16:9; 12:07)
� Theatrical Trailer (1:22)
� Previews

 

DVD Release Date: March 6th, 2017
Amaray

Chapters 8

 

 

 

Comments

Screenbound's DVD reproduces in SD PAL the contents of Redemption/Kino Lorber's American Blu-ray and DVD editions, bettering the other two DVD editions under review here with a newer HD master, English subtitles for the French track, and the alternate "horror" version of the film (although this version and the bonus version on the American Kino discs runs about a minute shorter than the version released to tape stateside under the EROTIKILL title from Force Video). The feature version is identical to the softcore version on the other DVDs - the previous Arrow DVD was subject to BBFC cuts - which deleted a couple brief hardcore shots from the unauthorized version released on tape in the US as THE LOVES OF IRINA which itself differs from the actual hardcore version which made use of inserts featuring Romay and her actor/editor boyfriend Ramon Ardid. Extras include an interview with director Franco about the film and Romay and another piece with Bouyxou who shares his memories of the late Romay. The trailer appears to be the same as the one on the Image disc although with English audio.

ED, NOTE: We will be comparing to the Redemption Blu-ray HERE soon...

 - Eric Cotenas

 


DVD Menus
(
Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - LEFT vs. RSR Multimedia - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Maison Rouge / Screenbound - Region 2 - PAL - RIGHT)
 

 


 

Screen Captures

(Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP vs. RSR Multimedia - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Maison Rouge / Screenbound - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 


(Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP vs. RSR Multimedia - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Maison Rouge / Screenbound - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 


(Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP vs. RSR Multimedia - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Maison Rouge / Screenbound - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 


(Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP vs. RSR Multimedia - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Maison Rouge / Screenbound - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 


(Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP vs. RSR Multimedia - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Maison Rouge / Screenbound - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 


(Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP vs. RSR Multimedia - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Maison Rouge / Screenbound - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 


(Image Entertainment - Region 0 - NTSC - TOP vs. RSR Multimedia - Region 2 - PAL - MIDDLE vs. Maison Rouge / Screenbound - Region 2 - PAL - BOTTOM)

 


 

Report Card:

 

Image:

Maison Rouge/Screenbound

Sound:

Maison Rouge/Screenbound

Extras: Maison Rouge/Screenbound

 
DVD Box Covers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Distribution

Image Entertainment

Region 0 - NTSC

RSR Multimedia
Region 2 - PAL
Maison Rouge / Screenbound
Region 2 - PAL

 



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