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Linda (Ewa Strömberg) has some recurring nightmares about a lesbian
relationship with a woman she has never even seen (in real life), but when she
sees a nightclub performance by Nadine (Soledad Miranda) - basically an artsy
striptease -, she knows, Nadine is the woman of her dreams.
Soon, Linda feels
drawn to Nadine, both in a metaphorical sense as well as for real, as a certain
countess Corrodi needs Linda, a lawyer, to come to her island to help her sort
out some inheritance ... the inheritance of Dracula. & of course, countess
Corrodi is in fact Nadine, & Nadine has little problems seducing Linda
& drinking some of her blood (being the heiress of Dracula, she is a
vampire of course) ...
The next day, Linda is found on a beach totally
amnesiac, & she is soon sent to doctor Seward's (Dennis Price) asylum.
Seward though seems to be not so much interested in the well-being of his
patients than in finding out the secrets of the vampires to become one of them
- thus he also shelters half-crazy Agra (Heidrun Kussin), one of Nadine's
Eventually, thanks to the help of Linda's boyfriend Omar
(Andrés Monales), Linda comes over her amnesia & is soon released from the
asylum, but it appears that Nadine has become obsessed by her & desperately
wants to make her a vampire, modelled after herself ... but Linda refuses. Out
of frustration, Nadine kills her parnter on stage during her next nightclub
act, to an applauding public.
Doc Seward, hoping to this way lure Nadine to
him, agrees to help Linda against the vampire, even fills her in on how to kill
vampires ... however, when Linda tries to get to Nadine, she is taken captive
by Mehmed (Jess Franco), the husband of Agra, who has turned psychokiller
after Nadine turned Agra into a lunatic & now wants to torture all girls
that have something to do with Nadine to death. Eventually though, Linda
manages to kill him.
Meanwhile Nadine has arrived at Seward's place, but while
he hopes to learn the secrets of vampirism, she just wants revenge for turning
Linda against her ... & even though Seward knows every trick in the book to
keep vampires from himself, he is in the end killed by Nadine's non-vampiric
servant Morpho (José Martinez Blanco).
Meanwhile though, Luinda's boyfriend
Omar & her psychiatrist doctor Steiner (Paul Muller) have picked up
Nadine's trail, & she only barely escapes them. When she arrives back at
her home, she is only barely alive ... which is when Linda arrives there too,
though, & to avoid becomeing a vampire herself has to kill her ...
Lesbos is probably Jess Franco's best film, but certainly one of his most
In all, it is a triumph of form over content: While the story is a
barely disguised retelling of passages of Bram Stoker's Dracula, set in
modern time, & with lesbian sex thrown in for good measure, the movie's
delirious visuals take it onto a level completely of its own, where pulp
fiction meets art, the horrific meets the erotic, where surreal &
psychedelic images dominate, all helped by director Jess Franco's rich
cinematic language bursting with weird set-ups, unusal close-ups, a fascination
for the unusual and a camera
that seems to be perpetually in motion.
The psychedelic jazz score by
Siegfried Schwab & Manfred Hübler (that had a major revival in the
mid-1990's & that is featured in 2 other Franco-movies from that time, Sie
tötete in Ekstase/She
killed in Ecstasy and Der
Teufel kam aus Akasava/The Devil came from Akasava) of course only adds to the
delirious atmosphere of the film, as does the otherworldly sensuality of