sorry for the mistakes!
La Masque de la Méduse
The speech undertaken in "La nuit des Horologes", which was to be the
last act of a long career, finds its continuity in "La masque de la
Méduse" which comes out, almost surprisingly, in 2009. Among
other things not even this was supposed to be the last film, because
Jean Rollin had another project in mind which he cannot achieve.
We are therefore in a movie in which he makes the point of a life again
and he talks about memory and death. A film that initially only lasted
sixty minutes to which the director added another twenty minutes thus
creating a two-part film and postponing curiously to the debut of "Le
viol du vampire".
With his slow and melancholic style, an essential production and
direction, Rollin resumes how the title makes us understand the myth of
Medusa, played among other things by his wife Simone, persecuted by the
memory of her victims petrified by his gaze.
A story that takes place today, full of symbolism and surreal scenes,
which opens with Medusa who turns in an aquarium, petrifies a cellist
and goes to the Grand Guignol theatre on whose stage she gives life to
a long monologue focused on the victims.
Her search for redemption and the remorse that afflicts her lead her to
a long wandering and a series of encounters in which she faces a series
of characters including her sisters Steno and Euryale. A first part
that ends with a dramatic and violent crescendo that marks the death of
The second part opens with a cameo by the director who buries Medusa's
head which is then brought to light. We then find ourselves catapulted
into the Peré-Lachise cemetery, with Steno who is the keeper of
the heads of her sisters and lives in a crypt. Here much of the action
takes place, with rituals and references to beloved vampires.
A difficult film, especially in the first part and almost impossible to
summarize but with a clear objective. A poor production certainly ruins
what could have been an interesting chapter, with interpreters who are
committed to creating their own characters. However, there remains a
good end to a career by a director who would have deserved more luck
and more feedback.
Jean Rollin died at the age of seventy-two on November 15, 2010, after a long illness.