Search This Blog

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

The Killers (1964)

Two professional hit men (Lee Marvin, Clu Gulager) barge into a school for the blind and in cold blood kill an instructor (John Cassavetes). One of the hit men (Marvin) is disturbed that he made no attempt to flee or plead for his life, he simply stood there waiting to be shot. He becomes determined to find out why and attempts to track down the victim's story. The second film adaptation of the Ernest Hemingway short story, this film is actually a remake of the 1946 film version rather than an accurate adaptation of the short story. It was intended as a movie for television but Universal thought it too violent so it was released theatrically instead. Unfortunately, it has the feel of and the flat look of a TV movie (the rear projection work is shoddy), a Universal backlot job with a generic tossed off score by John Williams (you'd never guess the extent of his talent by his nondescript work here). There's no atmosphere, no tension, no style, nothing that would elevate it to anything beyond a disposable movie of the week. Directed without much conviction by Don Siegel (who has a cameo as a short order cook). With Angie Dickinson as the duplicitous femme fatale, Ronald Reagan (not bad at all in his last film role) as the film's villain, Claude Akins, Norman Fell, Virginia Christine (who also appeared in the 1946 version) and the jazz singer Nancy Wilson in her film debut.

No comments:

Post a Comment