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Killer's Kiss [DVD] [1955] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

3.5 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Dubbed: French
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews
  • ASIN: 0792841387
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 280,749 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
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Product description


An exercise in film noir fairytale, 1955's Killer's Kiss was Stanley Kubrick's second feature film (he had the first buried forever) and shows just how powerful a filmmaker he was right out of the gate. Followers of Kubrick's career will note the appearance of themes and images that recurred (a final axe-fight in a warehouse full of disembodied mannequin parts would not be out of place in The Shining), but this is also notably unlike later Kubrick films in its use of authentic locations and its 65-minute running time.

The plot is a tiny anecdote about a washed-up boxer (Jamie Smith), a dance hall dame (Irene Kane) and a slimy hood (Frank Silvera) during one crowded weekend of brutality and romance.

There's a sense of a young director playing games: the boxing match (a definite influence on Raging Bull) is all low-angle close-ups and subjective shots with plenty of thump and dazzle, and the traditional Expressionist look of noir is exaggerated with many a tricky shot or doomy plot twist. The three unfamiliar leads are all excellent as small-timers struggling with big passions, and there is already a potent use of raucous source music and subtle sound design to augment the stark, haunted black and white imagery.

On the DVD Killer's Kiss on disc features no extras other than a blaring trailer ("a picture as brazen as the naked lights of Broadway, as hard as the New York streets in which it was shot!"). The black and white picture is 4:3, and comes with soundtracks in English, German, Italian and Spanish; subtitles in English, German, Italian, French, Dutch and Spanish. --Kim Newman

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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 2 March 2011
Format: DVD
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on 2 November 2012
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on 19 July 2010
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