Diabolique: Vadim’s Vamps
I’m on Diabolique with a follow-up to my article about 1932’s Vampyr and Carmilla. “Vadim’s Vamps” follows the lady vampire into the 1960s, where she finds herself under the stewardship of swinger Roger Vadim. But first, he made a movie with Brigitte Bardot.
When producers tried to import this new style of horror to France, it resulted in films which, while inspired by Hammer, took a very different approach — one that in time would become recognizable as a distinctly “Continental” style of horror, less concerned with logic and plot and more focused on mood. If the things that happened didn’t make sense, so what? That was how nightmares worked. Two films, both released in 1960, embraced this concept of cinema fantastique. One was Georges Franju’s Les yeux sans visage. The other was Roger Vadim’s Et mourir de plaisir (Blood and Roses), an adaptation of Sheridan Le Fanu’s influential “Carmilla.”