"We are sublime disorder. We're from before their god. They made him say 'Let there be light' to cut our night in half. But, their order is chaos. Our disorder is mad poetry. Our existence awakens and our night is clarity. The two orphan girls roar alone in the night, like flames. And so, no one can touch them. All others are puppets for our game."
Louise & Henriette(Alexandra Pic & Isabelle Teboul)are supposedly blind teenage girls living in a Catholic orphanage. In fact, they are female vampires who must feed from the blood of whatever is available, sneaking out at night to find fresh victims(..like an unfortunate dog roaming a nearby cemetery). Their convent mothers love them, believing these two are angelic lambs, sweet innocents when in fact they are cunning blood-drinkers who relish the taste as it enters their bodies, providing the nourishment they need to survive. They often ponder their identities and where they came from, likening themselves to Aztec goddesses, since they found them in a book within their Mother Superior's library. Once they are adopted by a kind eye-specialist, Dr. Dennary(Bernard Charnacé), Louise and Henriette find freedom to pursue interests in Paris, finding suitable victims to drain at night when their guardian is asleep. An ailment that plagues the girls is daytime blindness, but at night they can see well enough. Night to them is shaded in blue(..which is why Rollin's nighttime scenes are colored blueberry)and they thoroughly enjoy the sights they see. Most of the film displays Louise and Henriette's adventures, finding victims to drain, pondering their past and fates, worrying about potential threats that might lie ahead, and tiring of their predicament regarding the blindness they face and the lack of freedom due to their male guardian who likes to keep them from venturing too far from home.
Not much of a plot which shouldn't be news to the Rollin faithful. This is different in that the female leads aren't lesbian lovers always fondling each other or walking around naked all the time. Their both 17 years old which removes certain aspects Rollin fans are accustomed to. He does shoot in a vast cemetery and we are introduced to a few "creatures of the night" like a She-wolf who recently escaped an asylum resting within a train station, a "midnight lady" cemetery vampire with giant wings, and a vampire who feasts on cadavers who the girls meet along the way. Like in a lot of vampire films, the feeding habits of the teenage vamps eventually catches up to them. Their facade of innocence is shown as quite a tool for the girls to use when they need to feed from potential victims(..like guest-starring Brigitte Lahaie). The dialogue mostly spoken by the girls seems like verse you'd read from a book of melancholic poetry. Rarely are the girls anything other than theatrical in their speech and point-of-view regarding their existence and life in general. The film offers a possibility that these girls are incarnations of others from past lives, returning to live on earth over and over, but it seems that this could merely be created stories from the girls who often let their imaginations run rampant. I think the rub of Rollin's film is just how much the girls enjoy killing and feeding. They do not look like the sort who'd speak so unemotionally about slitting a throat and draining a victim's blood. A riot of a scene has Louise and Henriette pondering just how to kill Dennary. The nuns are often presented as idiots to scorn, but in this film, they're merely naive as to how the girls really are. They cherish the two blind girls, feeling pity for them. Which makes the private scenes between Louise and Henriette so eye-opening and often funny. But, as always, Rollin brings to the screen images that form in his mind..how to frame his girls using their surroundings as a way to paint a unique canvas. This is such the case when they enter the Paris cemetery or when they flee from their orphanage entering a wilderness path, Rollin visualizes how he desires to shoot his characters in the way they come to his mind as he writes the screenplay. The opening montage using postcards, photos & paintings set to such a moody score really sets up the nature of the film and it's characters. Understanding that the film is from the literary work of two books from Rollin makes sense considering how the girls go through a series of vignettes, meeting various characters before returning to the only real home they've ever known only to succumb to their bloodlust banishing them to eternal unrest knowing that the authorities would be after them for biting other innocent orphans. I thought the leads were lovely and handled the unusual dialogue rather well. They were of course a bit theatrical in their presentation but the words they spoke entitled them to be.