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The Iron Rose [Blu-ray]

3.2 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

A pair of lovers have a tryst in a vacant tomb, but then find themselves unable to escape form the graves and crypts of the massive cemetery. One of cult director Jean Rollin's most unconventional film, THE IRON ROSE vividly depicts the young couple's steady descent into madness.

BONUS FEATURES: Introduction by Jean Rollin (5 min), 2 French Theatrical Trailers, 2 English Theatrical Trailers, Trailers for Fascination, Lips of Blood, Shiver of the Vampires & The Nude Vampire. Interview with Natalie Perrey (9 min), Interview with Francoise Pascal (15 min) and more! Languages include English Dubbed + French with optional English Subtitles.

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Francoise Pascal, Jean Rollin, Pierre Dupont, Natalie Perrey, Dily D'Argent
  • Directors: Jean Rollin
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Blu-ray, DTS Surround Sound, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Kino Lorber films
  • DVD Release Date: January 24, 2012
  • Run Time: 80 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0063E00KC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #57,874 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Blu-ray
While out riding bicycles in the country, a young couple on their first date stop to picnic in a vast cemetery. They soon find themselves in the throes of passion in one of the crypts below ground. When they emerge, the already uneasy lovers discover night has fallen, and they are now lost amongst the graves. As the night progresses, the seemingly endless cemetery takes on a more ominous tone as the lovers panic and turn on each other as they try in vain to find a way out. Before the break of dawn the girl becomes consumed by her surroundings, rejects the outside world, and wishes to remain with the dead. By contrast her companion becomes more hostile as he searches in vain for a way out.

There's more to THE IRON ROSE than that, but not much more in terms of plot. It literally is a night in the cemetery. Director, Rollin does an admirable job of infusing the surroundings with a somber dread as we share what feels like a real-time descent into dusk and the overwhelming spell cast by the iron crosses, crumbling statues, and overgrown maze of tombs in which the lovers are trapped. Indeed, to enjoy this film you pretty much have to share Rollin's fascination for the morbid aesthetics of the authentic cemetery in which he filmed.

I'm not a huge Rollin fan but I liked THE IRON ROSE quite a bit. It would be more than fair to say it's not for everyone. It's certainly not "horror" in the conventional sense. Rather, it's an artsy, grim bit of romantic poetry that chooses death over love as its inspiration. Sound pretentious? Well, it is, but it also just kind of worked for me.

This new HD transfer is a great improvement over the previous DVD. The image is more nuanced than before, and gives the film a more natural looking nighttime appearance.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
For the uninitiated, the films of Jean Rollin can be hard to explain (and sometimes, even harder to defend). The Iron Rose was the 3rd in a series of borderline horror/erotica films the director made in the 70's. For those looking for cheap thrills, this probably isn't the Rollin film you want. Unlike the "lesbian vampire" sub-genre Rollin help to perpetuate with films like Shiver of the Vampires [Blu-ray] and Lips of Blood [Blu-ray], The Iron Rose is actually fairly restrained.

It's a fairly simple story of a young couple who get locked in a cemetary at night, and the rapid disintegration of their relationship and sanity. The girl (neither character is given a name in the film) is affected the most, as she begins to embrace the death and decay surrounding them, to the point of even talking to corpses beneath their feet. In the wrong hands, such scenes might have decended into camp, but Rollin gets a bravura performance out of Francoise Pascal. She takes the girl from kittenish flirt to screaming lunatic in a matter of minutes.

As with most any foreign "art" film, one can look for something beneath the surface if one enjoys that type of celluloid psychoanalysis. The girl, for example, may be taking on her shocking new hobby out of disappointment in her would-be lover (who unfortunately resembles the French love child of Rob Lowe and Eric McCormack). If that sounds far-fetched, consider this exchange early in the film: As the pair settle in for a picnic beside a tombstone, the boy accidentally knocks over an iron cross marker.
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1 Comment 8 of 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
Simplicity is the bff of suspense, in modern cinema there seems to be a need to over complicate things to such a point that most suspense is lost in thrillers and horror films, replaced by action, which is the opponent of suspense. Something doesn't have to reach out and grab you to be scary, it's the thought that something could reach out and grab you that is. "The Iron Rose" is an obscure French fright film that understands this.

Made in 1973 by the late Jean Rollin, he of many a soft core lesbian vampire flick, here delivers an artful work of atmosphere and dread. Based on a poem by the French poet Tristan Coliere, this simple story follows two young lovers, not even name in the film, who find themselves locked into a cemetery over night. A frightful thought for sure, but it's in how the characters react to their situation and surroundings that make for an interesting and unsettling film. The ending is both tragic and poetic, maybe a little pretentious. The film does drag a little towards the end, and at just over 80 minutes it does feel a little padded.

Still, this is an interesting work, one of the best by Rollin, who had a real flair for art in horror, but was bogged down by his exorbitant interest in naked vampires and sex scenes, though, they too were very well filmed. I saw this first on Turner Classic Movies' TCM Underground, where I first expected this too be an unusual fit for the well respected cable network, I found that this fit in quiet nicely with their classy programming. I'm not fully sure what audience will react best to this unqiue film, but adventures horror fans and European art fans should have common ground with this rare gem.
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