“Kiss of the Damned” is an erotic story that begins with lusts and ends with ambiguity as told by director Xan Cassavetes. The story centers around Djuna, who is played by Josephine de la Baume as she gives in to lust, gives in to love and struggles to cope with her sister. At the beginning of the movie we see Djuna become immediately attracted to Paolo (Milo Ventimiglia) as he to her and they waste little time in denying their destiny. I may be getting ahead of myself a little because Djuna does deny herself of Paolo for a moment as she struggles to control her natural urges to rip his neck apart. After Djuna entrusts her truth to Paolo, Paolo accepts it quickly and embraces it. Paolo wants to give himself over to her, trust her. After a night where no-one is denied their lusts and passions the two become ‘lovers in the night.’ A life that Paolo becomes accustomed to quite quickly, and how could he not? It felt natural to him to kill animals, we do it now as humans but we don’t have to see the creatures we kill life slip away from them. I suppose that makes us feel better. Oh and all you vegetarians out there, don’t think of yourselves as if you were better than that because you guys rip, gnaw and kill the lives of those plants you claim to love.
Now of course the Vampire is known to kill human beings right? And why not? They are just an inferior creature. The vampire society — represented here perfectly by Anna Mouglalis — has a pretty insightful conversation about themselves compared to the humans. This vampire society is very politically correct and succumbing to their murderous appetite is social suicide. Does this world belong to the Immortal because they will always inherit the Earth? Or does it belong to humanity who may be mortal but collectively are immortal?
The most interesting character here was Djuna’s sister , Mimi — who was played (poorly I should add) by Roxane Mesquida — and she was ‘honesty’ incarnate. Mimi only cared to satisfy herself in every way she wanted. There was no desire that she did not satisfy; while everyone around her masked their monstrosity, controlled their lusts and concealed their identity, she did not. Mimi terrified everyone around her because she was capable of bringing out what no one here wanted to face, their truth. I thought that her fate in the hands of a Native American was so poetic.
I loved this film, it had everything a good horror film should have. All right so you won’t see those cheap moments that are made to make you jump off of your seat but the terror was there. The cinematography was beautiful and very erotic. Usually I don’t like it when a film uses sexuality, that has plagued a lot of movies especially vampire flicks but there it did not, it illustrated something special about the vampire. What you wonder? Their transformation was based on desire, they are only monsters when they are satisfying their desires…no matter what that desire is. I will say that the film didn’t need all those ‘sexual’ scenes, they had already established that at the beginning but oh well. This movie was a breath of fresh air, it was poetic, hypnotic and reminded me of great films such as “The Hunger” (1993), The Shinning (1980) or The Addiction (1995). The philosophy was sublime, engrossing and epic…darn right I got my Phix .