The Movie: The Vampire Lovers (1970)
What Is It?: Hammer’s first adaptation of le Fanu’s Carmilla. Ingrid Pitt transcends the exploitation with her energetic presence and committed acting. She plays a lusty vampiress who goes around biting and bedding everyone in sight. Well, everyone but Peter Cushing. The depiction of a predatory lesbian vampire is homophobic, but Pitt plays her with such humanity that she earns our empathy much more so than her vacant-eyed victim, whom she genuinely seems to love.
Why Today?: On this day in 1814, Carmilla author Sheridan le Fanu is born.