The movie Lips of Blood (1975), also titled Lèvres de sang, is a French horror film directed by Jean Rollin. The story follows Frédéric (Jean-Loup Philippe), a man who begins to have visions of a young woman dressed in white who is locked behind the gates of a château. The opening party sequence was shot in an apartment of one of the producers . At a reception for the launch of a new perfume, Frédéric sees a photo of the ruins of an old château by the sea. His mind takes him back to when he was a young boy, walking up to the gate of the château and speaking with a girl who appears to be a little older than he is. Young Frédéric opens the gate and the girl tells him to go to sleep, and later she returns and wakes him. He leaves her and closes the gate behind him. The girl tells him to open the gate but he promises her that he will be back to free her.
Frédéric’s mind then comes back to reality and he becomes convinced that the meeting between him and the girl actually happened. He tells his mother, who begins to act strangely and tells him he must have imagined it. He does not agree and sets out to find the girl and set her free. Jennifer, the girl from the château, begins to appear to Frédéric in a number of visions, but she does not speak to him, which makes it much more difficult to find her at the château. On one of her appearances, Jennifer leads Frédéric to a cemetery, where she makes him open up coffins that unleash a hoard of female vampires. Frédéric runs off and is soon met by a woman claiming to be Jennifer as she is now. The woman leads him to an abandoned apartment block and locks him in, as the real Jennifer watches from a distance. The woman is then killed by the vampires, who free Frédéric. A man with a gun almost kills Frédéric, but he manages to escape the gunman and go home, where his mother has him committed to a mental hospital.
It is revealed that his mother was behind the attempts by the woman and the gunman to prevent Frédéric from finding the château. At the hospital, Jennifer appears to Frédéric again, but he begins to doubt his sanity when she doesn’t speak. The vampires show up at the hospital and kill his psychiatrist and let him escape. Walking along the streets, Frédéric buys a postcard of the château from a blind man; the name of it is Sauveterre Castle. As he boards a train, Jennifer appears once more to him and smiles, knowing that he is on his way to her. Once at the château, he is met by the vampires and then finds Jennifer’s coffin, which is surrounded by a shrine .
- Jean-Loup Philippe as Frédéric
- Annie Belle as Jennifer (credited as Annie Brilland)
- Nathalie Perrey as Frédéric’s mother
- Martine Grimaud as the photographer
- Catherine Castel as twin vampire
- Marie-Pierre Castel as twin vampire
- Hélène Maguin as vampire
- Anita Berglund as vampire
- Claudine Beccarie as Claudine
- Béatrice Harnois as the model
- Sylvia Bourdon as the fake Jennifer
- Mireille Dargent
- Paul Bisciglia as the psychiatrist
- Willy Braque as the gunman
- Julien Etchevery
- Serge Rollin as Frédéric (as a child)
- Director Jean Rollin based the main male character Frédéric on himself .
- The film was shot in three weeks .
- All the scenes shot in one particular cemetery were filmed without permits .
- The film was made under the title “Jennifer” .
- Actress Annie Belle had just starred in her first role in the 1974 Jean Rollin film Tout le Monde il en a Deux (Bacchanales Sexuelles) in which she only had a small role, but a memorable one. Rollin loved working with her so much he decided to cast her in this film .
- Director Jean Rollin makes a cameo appearance as the cemetery caretaker killed by the female vampires .
- Taliesin Meets the Vampires: Lips of Blood Review: “A bizarrely engrossing film, strangely bare in soundtrack, the film bombed at the box office and so Rollin filmed a couple of hardcore scenes and re-released the film as an X-rated piece entitled “Suck me, vampire”… I really like this one and it is a good introduction to Rollin as, although it is surreal, it has a fairly straight story. ”
- Horror Movie a Day: Lips of Blood: “Everything just worked like gangbusters for me; half of his films I’ve wondered if I could even really count them as horror, but there’s some good vampire action sprinkled throughout, all in service of his most accessible and intriguing story, and a likable male lead for a change to boot.”
- Film Freedonia: Lèvres de Sang (Lips of Blood, 1975): “In Lèvres de Sang, Rollin presents an uncompromisingly direct study of the incestuous that underlies many vampire mythology which has corrupt ancestors heave off the lids of their tombs and spread disease and death among their descendants. Simultaneously, Lèvres de Sang succeeds in capturing a note of wistful longing for the scenes, hints, landscapes, people that remain on the very horizon of childhood memory, which can, thanks to some small evocation—the right tint of light, a smell, a familiar face—lance right through your adult perceptions and memories to present unfulfilled chances and unanswered questions, even mysteries.”
-  Taliesin Meets the Vampires: Lips of Blood Review
-  Horror Movie a Day: Lips of Blood
-  Film Freedonia: Lèvres de Sang (Lips of Blood, 1975)