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on 13 September 2017
This film although comprised of superficial thrills is entertaining since it breaks away from the standard Dracula fare which mainly involved the talented Christopher Lee as the arch Prince of Darkness. It's interesting to see George Cole as an upright citizen before his wheeler-dealer persona as Arthur Daley in the TV series. Simple entertainment when something frivolous is required.
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on 26 April 2017
The film is ok but very tame by todays standards
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on 22 March 2017
Better than expected brendan bourke
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on 17 May 2013

Ingrid pitt plays a vampire out for revenge against a small town. She gets herself invited to various wealthy households and seduces the nubile young daughters of the Austrian nobles (said nobles played by Hammer Stalwart Peter Cushing and Arthur Daley himself George Cole) slowly draining them inbetween some extremely softcore lesbian sexaimed at an audience for an audience growing steadily jaded by an influx of sex filled euro-horror from directors like Jean Rollin and Jess Franco.
Vampire Lovers is a film that has one foot still firmly in the old school hammer gothic tradition with fog shrouded villages, taverns country estates and period costumes galore. The other foot is in the world of the modern (for the 1970's) euro-horror imports that were stealing Hammers thunder. In spite of its attempt to pander to the more purient audiences of the time Vampire lovers is still a lot of fun. The sets are great, the performances are also uniformly good and director Roy ward Baker makes the most of things.
The blu-ray IS region free. A rarity for scream factory releases but it will play on your PS3 with no problems. Its using the same sources as the MGM midnight movies release and looks great. Theres some print damage evident but its still a noticable step up from that release. Extras wise it carries over all the bonus features from the midnight movies release including the commentary track and Ingrid Pitt reading an extract from Carmilla as well as including a couple of short new featurettes as well.
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on 9 January 2014
The Vampire Lovers was always one of my fav Hammer films so i was a bit disappointed to find that the UK 15 rated stand alone version is cut. Missing scenes are Ingrid Pitt doing a brief full frontal and some of the blood letting at the end of the movie. However the UK double pack of the Vampire Lovers and Lust for a Vampire are both uncut and both in widescreen.
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on 2 April 2013
The picture quality on this Australian blu-ray seems OK, but the audio is horrid. Whether it comes from an inferior source or has just been badly mastered I don't know, but it's overly-quiet and prone to what sounds like wow & flutter from a warped tape. It's noticeably worse than any of the DVD versions I've encountered (both US and UK releases).

I suggest holding off for the Scream!Factory release due in April 2013.
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on 8 September 2013
As any fule kno this is the first part of the Hammer's Karnstein trilogy (The Vampire Lovers, Lust for a Vampire, Twins of Evil) based on Irish Gothic-horror writer Sheriden Le Fanu's tales. With the help of The Countess (Dawn Addams) Carmilla/Mircalla/Marcilla is the vampire lesbian parasite who latches onto a host, drains them of their blood until they die and then moves onto the next. That's pretty much it as far as the plot goes. If that doesn't sound too promising it is told with typical Hammer conviction backed up with sets, costumes and the familiar faces of the Hammer stable. The direction by Roy Ward Baker is superb, his graceful camera swooping and panning making the film look incredible, for example, the pre-title sequence involving Baron Hartog (Wilmer) is wonderfully dreamlike and atmospheric. The production values are good too, and the sets superb (later Hammers would have much poorer sets). This film marked a change for Hammer and dictated the direction of the last few years of Hammer productions i.e. an obsession with tits, bums and lesbians (which is no bad thing especially if they look like Ingrid Pitt or Madeleine Smith). The performances are largely excellent, especially Ingrid Pitt who hints at pathos in her role as a vampiress through the ages and there are typically solid performances from the likes of Cushing and Wilmer (two 1960's Sherlock Holmes). There are a few minus points - George Cole is miscast as a squire (I always see him as spiv Flash Harry in St Trinians), Dawn Addams has a weird accent (when everyone else - Mayne excepted - is talking with an English accent) and there's some clumsy back-projection. Apart from that, this is one of the best latter day Hammers.

* This was a review of the DVD. Since then, I've bought the Scream Factory Blu Ray release which is region free. The image quality is better than the DVD although there are small noticeable defects [mainly, white spots] which do not affect viewing. Colours are generally fine but faces especially, are slightly on the ruddy side . Extras include a commentary from Roy Ward Baker and best of all, an interview with Madeline Smith.
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on 8 April 2016
Grabbed this version for the wonderful commentary by Hearns and Rigby. They do the best commentaries on these classic Hammer films. If you are a commentary fan like me you will not go wrong with this version. The dvd has been cleaned up and the sound is better than previous versions.
Ingrid Pitt Kate Omara, Peter Cushing and Douglas Wilmer bring this film far above material that they are working with. That alone is fun to watch.
I have the original MGM release with commentary by Pitt and director Roy Ward Baker I recommend this one for cleaner presentation.
This plays on my regular and multiregion dvd players
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on 7 October 2014
I've always been a fan of horror movies made in the sixties and seventies and this is one of my favourites, mainly because of the delicious Ingrid Pitt who could bare her fangs and hiss with the best of them. I am delighted with this blu-ray edition and really impressed with the bevy of extras, especially the interview with Maddy Smith who clearly enjoyed herself in the role of near-victim to Miss Pitt's avaricious vampire. Heartilly recommended for those who enjoy horror movies set in medieval Europe with not a chain-saw or hockey mask in sight.
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on 26 March 2016
The result of a co-production deal between American International Pictures and Hammer, and probably the final film the British company made that generated any kind of controversial buzz at all, Roy Ward Baker's The Vampire Lovers (1970) was adapted remarkably closely from Sheridan Le Fanu's 1871 novella Carmilla, and is the first chapter in what eventually became known as Hammer's `Karnstein Trilogy'.
In her most famous and iconic role, pneumatic Polish bombshell Ingrid Pitt plays the buxom vampire girl preying on the daughters of several noble families in 18th Century Styria; shedding her inhibitions, and her clothes, Pitt certainly makes for a memorable central character for the film, a sexually ferocious, bare-breasted blood-sucker with an overt preference for the female of the species; the canny, commercially-driven decision by Hammer to make a horror film based around the notion of lesbian lust certainly got some pulses racing back in 1970, and was aided in no small part by the gusto with which Pitt throws herself into the part.
Unfortunately, despite the literate script and great cast (which also features the doe-eyed, big-boobed waif Madeline Smith and the depraved-looking Kate O'Mara as Pitt's victims, as well as George Cole, Douglas Wilmer, and Peter Cushing as a trio of fatherly vampire hunters), the film is prevented from achieving classic status within the Hammer filmography by nature of its unfortunately under-budgeted look; by 1970, the lush on-screen grandeur of Hammer finest epics was starting to fade, with the company's period sets and costumes looking increasingly flea-bitten over the coming years (this certainly had something to do with the death of Hammer's legendary production designer Bernard Robinson at around this time). Also, the story is a little choppy; for instance, it is unclear if the presence of the black-clad, silent male vampire who apparently hangs around Pitt monitoring her activities (played by John Forbes-Robertson after Christopher Lee was offered the part but unsurprisingly told the producers to jog on) was deliberately inserted into the film with a view to the character having more to do in a sequel, or whether the writers simply forgot to do anything with him, but either way his presence makes absolutely no sense within the context of the film.
The `Karnstein Trilogy' would continue over the next year or so with the wretched Lust for a Vampire and then the far better Twins of Evil, but by then the publicity generated by Hammer's new-found boldness was waning. Within just a couple of years of The Vampire Lovers' release, nips to the neck had become inseparable from the other kind when it came to horror movies, and Hammer's new `tits and fangs' formula quickly found far more explicit expression in films from other production companies. Restored and uncut, this DVD edition features a jolly commentary track by horror historians Jonathan Rigby and Marcus Hearn that, as good as it is, could perhaps have used some input from one of the surviving stars of the movie too (I attended a live interview with the wonderful Madeline Smith last year, who still has a lot of fondness for her time as a Hammer glamour girl, and surely would have been a good value inclusion here).
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