Personally speaking, one of the most exciting times to be a genre fan was in the late 90’s/early 00’s when DVD companies were opening the floodgates of Euro horror – unleashing more than a handful of forgotten gems to Stateside DVD. It was also when I first discovered the works of French filmmaker Jean Rollin, an auteur whose work I’ve really grown to admire over the last decade.
And while my adoration for Rollin is somewhat newfound, it doesn’t make news of his passing any easier. Fangoria reports that the legendary horror surrealist has passed away after an extended illness at the age of 72. His legacy includes a canon of dreamlike works such as Night of the Hunted, Fascination, Lips of Blood, Requiem for a Vampire, The Living Dead Girl and the more “mainstream” zombie classic The Grapes of Death.
Rollin’s work has always been inaccessible by even large pockets of genre fans as his narratives were often little more than a loose assortment of strange imagery strung together by only general coherency. His films were odd, challenging and, occasionally, maddening. Fangoria says there was no one quite like him, and there’s really no disagreeing with that statement.
Lots of Rollin’s work is readily available on DVD. As we here at Dread Central mourn the loss of one of Euro horror’s heroes, we urge the uninitiated to take the plunge and discover some of the man’s work. We’ll miss you, Jean. But we’ll never forget.
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