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The Killers

The Killers (1964)

tomatometer

80

Average Rating: 7.2/10
Reviews Counted: 20
Fresh: 16 | Rotten: 4

Though it can't best Robert Siodmak's classic 1946 version, Don Siegel's take on the Ernest Hemingway story stakes out its own violent territory, and offers a terrifically tough turn from Lee Marvin.

No Score Yet...

Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 4
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 2

Though it can't best Robert Siodmak's classic 1946 version, Don Siegel's take on the Ernest Hemingway story stakes out its own violent territory, and offers a terrifically tough turn from Lee Marvin.

audience

70

liked it
Average Rating: 3.6/5
User Ratings: 3,976

My Rating

Movie Info

Don Siegel directed this intensely pessimistic re-make of Robert Siodmak's 1946 film noir masterpiece The Killers, based upon a story by Ernest Hemingway. As the story opens two professional looking men in business suits -- Charlie (Lee Marvin) and Lee (Clu Gulager) -- push their way into a school for the blind and terrorize a secretary until she reveals the whereabouts of Johnny North (John Cassavetes). When Charlie and Lee trace Johnny to an automobile repair class, Johnny just stands there as

Unrated,

Drama

Gene L. Coon

Feb 18, 2003

Universal Pictures

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All Critics (20) | Top Critics (4) | Fresh (16) | Rotten (4) | DVD (10)

Perhaps the sole justification for turning a fine old movie into a just passable new one can be summed up as Angie Dickinson.

May 23, 2011 Full Review Source: TIME Magazine
TIME Magazine
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Ronald Reagan fails to crash convincingly through his goodguy image in his portrayal of a ruthless crook.

March 26, 2009 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The second film version (1964) of Ernest Hemingway's short story, directed by Don Siegel with far more energy than Robert Siodmak could muster for his overrated 1946 effort.

March 12, 2008 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A familiar tale of robbery and betrayal unfolds, not enhanced by the glossy colour but given a terrific boost by the fact that the two killers stick around and are superbly characterised by Marvin and Gulager.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The movie defines the violent, complex persona that would make Marvin a star, and he's cast alongside the irresistibly alluring Angie Dickinson ...

February 23, 2014 Full Review Source: Observer [UK]
Observer [UK]

A crime mystery that takes the best from every cast member and creates a hell of an ensemble piece.

June 3, 2013 Full Review Source: Cinema Crazed
Cinema Crazed

This take on the story by the invariably overrated Don Siegel is probably the most brightly lit, atmosphere-challenged movie ever to be tagged as noir.

August 12, 2009 Full Review Source: Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

The 1946 and 1964 versions of The Killers are vastly different, except for a couple of plot points, like the lack of surprise and failure to run the hitmen note with their target, and the double cross that is revealed at the end

May 30, 2008 Full Review Source: Urban Cinefile
Urban Cinefile

Though the film does not stand up to the 1946 version with Burt Lancaster, it has its own pleasures, including Marvin's rather likable role of an assassin, the exciting robbery sequence, and, of course, the villainous Reagan getting his just desserts.

March 12, 2008 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Um roteiro intrincado (ainda que excessivamente reminiscente de "Cidadão Kane") que se beneficia ainda mais graças à direção segura de Siegel e ao elenco excepcional (até Reagan, um ator geralmente medíocre, está bem).

June 12, 2007
Cinema em Cena

Movie remakes seem to be pouring out faster and more frequently than ever before, and it's rare that a remake gets even close to an original, much less equals it or surpasses it.

June 14, 2004 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

Ernest Hemingway's classic short story is updated and shot in garish colour, with considerably more violence.

May 24, 2003 Full Review Source: Film4
Film4

Even in today's violence-jaded era, the 1964 version of The Killers packs a punch when needed.

March 16, 2003 Full Review Source: Q Network Film Desk
Q Network Film Desk

The selfish cynicism on display, the every-man-and-woman-for-themselves bravado is a more cinematic than televisual conceit.

March 9, 2003 Full Review Source: ToxicUniverse.com
ToxicUniverse.com

Without pretension The Killers occupies its genre and welcomes each convention. It comes, however, late, and such conventions are worn for their familiarity.

February 25, 2003 Full Review Source: Not Coming to a Theater Near You
Not Coming to a Theater Near You

Ronald Reagan's last role proved to be just as scary as his actual presidency. Clu Gulager rocks, as always.

February 3, 2003
New Times

Audience Reviews for The Killers

the opening sequence at the diner is freaking genius
April 9, 2007
brooklynspo

Super Reviewer

Siegel's minimalistic style perfectly suits every crime tale he touches. This version rivals Robert Siodmak's previous by being something completely different, having more of a pulp-ish, b-movie sensitivity, au courant with a more nihilistic, violent, and mysogynistic time it was made. Memorable parts played by everyone, especially the badass Lee Marvin, and Angie Dickinson is to die for..
April 11, 2012
pier007

Super Reviewer

The original is where it's at, although this has it's moments. Very watchable.
May 26, 2011
kenstachnik

Super Reviewer

Not as atmospheric as Robert Siodmak's 1946 version but this neo-noirish rendition of Ernest Hemingway's short story does have it's merits. Lee Marvin and Angie Dickinson are standouts in an otherwise lethargic cast. Director Don Siegel took a completely different approach to the material, resulting in a film that's more of a retelling than a remake. In fact, if the titles weren't the same, it's doubtful you'd even recognize the story. I still favor the original film but The Killers of 1964 isn't nearly as bad as I thought it might be.
January 31, 2009
flixsterman
Randy Tippy

Super Reviewer

    1. Charlie: Lady, I don't have the time.
    – Submitted by Cameron B (7 months ago)
View all quotes (1)

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Foreign Titles

  • DER TOD EINES KILLERS (DE)
  • The Killers (1964) (UK)
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