60 user 106 critic

Daughters of Darkness (1971)

Les lèvres rouges (original title)
R | | Horror | 22 October 1971 (USA)
While passing through a vacation resort, a newlywed couple encounters a mysterious, strikingly beautiful countess and her aide.


Harry Kümel


Pierre Drouot (scenario), Harry Kümel (scenario) | 1 more credit »





Complete credited cast:
Delphine Seyrig ... Countess Elizabeth Báthory
John Karlen ... Stefan Chilton
Danielle Ouimet ... Valerie Chilton
Andrea Rau ... Ilona
Paul Esser ... Hotel Clerk
Georges Jamin ... Retired Policeman
Joris Collet Joris Collet ... Butler
Fons Rademakers ... Mother


A chic, good-looking and suitably 70's couple arrive at an extravagant and deserted seaside hotel after eloping. Stefan is wealthy and happily English, with a hidden streak of sadism, while Valarie is intelligent but of inferior (Swedish) blood. To keep her with him at the eerie hotel he lies consistantly about his relationship with his mother and his plans to tell her of their marriage. Meanwhile he has mysterious phone conversations with an older, dominant and pampered sissy. Two fresh guests arrive; the Hungarian countess, Elizabeth Bathory and her voluptuous protege, Ilona. Virgin corpses begin showing up about the city drained of their blood. A wary detective lurks around the hotel taunting his only suspect, the Countess. Written by kwedgwood@hotmail.com

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


If you think these ladies are something... wait until you meet MOTHER, she's something else! See more »




R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Italian censorship visa # 58789 delivered on 28 October 1971. See more »


When Ilona is lying on the bathroom floor, bikini marks are visible. Vampires are not supposed to have tan lines. See more »


Valerie: Don't lie to yourself, you were pleased. It gave you pleasure. You actually enjoyed to see that dead girl's body.
Stefan: And you enjoyed telling me.
See more »

Alternate Versions

There is an alternate opening credits where singer Lainie Cooke (Not Delphine Seyrig as rumored) is singing over the main theme of the film. The title cards are all red and stay like that for the remainder of the credits. The font is also more formal and less bold in comparison to the other version that is shown on DVDs and Blu-rays. The title card also uses the American version of the title font with the cursive writing on top and the bold word, "Darkness" on the bottom. Before the movie opens up, there is also an "R" Rating Certificate shown by possibly the MPAA. However, there is no data showing that the MPAA has rated this film but CARA which is a smaller branch and is owned by the MPAA has given the film it's "R" rating. ("R" Rating Certificate #415) This alternate opening credits sequence is only available through the Canadian and the American VHS. But, the American VHS is titled as, "CHILDREN OF THE NIGHT," instead of "Daughters of Darkness." The screen also goes black a few seconds before the singer finishes her song since the credits have finished rolling. Instead of starting with the opening shot of a train coming towards the camera, the sound of a train suddenly comes out of nowhere right after the song ends as the screen is still black. See more »


Featured in Delphine and Carole (2019) See more »


Les Lèvres Rouges (Thème)
Written and Performed by François de Roubaix And Orchestra
See more »

User Reviews

Part masterpiece/part schlock
10 February 2000 | by aaron-71See all my reviews

I first saw this movie when I was 12 and it had a huge impact on my early artistic endeavors as a young man. I've seen it periodically over the years and can see what intrigued me about it so much. It's part Ingmar Bergman film and part bad vampire movie. There are some beautifully filmed scenes along with some awful dialogue. The brilliant Delphine Seyrig is superbly creepy. The other performances are only mediocre. The music is appropriately over the top; sometimes sinister, sometimes goofy- seventies movie. The new director's cut contains more sex and nudity, probably to avoid getting an x-rating at the time of release. It's definitely worth checking out if you've never seen it.

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Belgium | France | West Germany


English | Dutch | French | German

Release Date:

22 October 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Daughters of Darkness See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (uncut)

Sound Mix:

Mono | Dolby Digital | Dolby Atmos


Color (Eastmancolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »

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