Lorna (Janine Reynaud) is an S/M-performer at Bill Mulway's (Jack Taylor) fancy
Lisbon nightclub, & Bill also happens to be her lover. At one of her
performances though, where she pretends to torture & kill a couple tied to
crosses, she attracts the attention of a mysterious stranger (Michel Lemoine),
who sees in Lorna the incarnation of evil.
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That same night, Lorna starts to have weird dreams, in which she is a
countess, living in a castle, having a strange relationship with a man she
calls the Admiral (Howard Vernon) - whom she soon happens to kill, though.
But her dreamworld seems to infest itself in the real world, when she
& Bill attend a weird funeral, & the decerased turns out to be the
Admiral, killed in exactly the same manner as Lorna did in her dream. Plus, at
social occasions, more & more people start to adress her as Countess, so
her dreams might actually be memories of a forgotten past ...
Bill, meanwhile, losing more & more grip over her, has a fit of
jealousy, & after a fight, Lorna runs off ...
Soon, Lorna meets a cute blonde, takes her to the castle & has sex with
her, in front of an array of shopwindow mannequins. All of a sudden,
Lorna kills her ...
When Lorna wakes up, she finds out her dream might not have been all that
much of a dream this time, as she still finds herself in the castle surrounded
by the mannequins - only the dead blond girl has now turned into a mannequin as
well. When Lorna rushes back to Bill's appartment, she finds him gone ...
In Berlin, Bill tries to set up a new nightclub show, when one night he
finds Lorna in his appartment. Soon the two pick up their relationship where
they left off, & Lorna is to become the lead in his S/M-performance once
again. What she doesn't know though is that Bill is actually in cahoots with
the mysterious stranger, & the 2 of them plan to kill her. But first the
mysterious stranger has to put her under his hypnotic spell, so she, at a
rehearsal for her next nightclub act, really kills her 2 victims, before Bill's
very eyes. He acts shocked, she runs off, gunshots fired by the stranger,
intended to kill her ...
When Bill comes home though, he finds Lorna in his bed, naked &
unscathed. When they start making love, she stabs him ...
The stranger takes Lorna home to Lisbon, to her castle, where she is
supposed to sleep, to forget - until they find their next victim, one wonders
Jess Franco's better films all tend to have a dreamlike atmosphere, but
never has he been quite as successful in delivering the cinematic equivalent of
a nightmare as with Necronomicon - the narrative logic (in terms of realism) is
abandoned ever so often for series of Freudian (& thus highly erotic)
associations, the imagery feels unreal due to the use of soft filters &
almost flowing light-effects, carefully arranged sets give an unreal
atmosphere. It might not be Franco's most accessible movie in terms of
storytelling, but as a twisted cinematic experience - if you are up for that -
it is highly rewarding.