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Killer's Kiss

Killer's Kiss (1955)

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Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 4
Fresh: 4 | Rotten: 0

audience

59

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Average Rating: 3.4/5
User Ratings: 7,049

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Movie Info

Stanley Kubrick's second feature film, Killer's Kiss was made on a budget of $40,000, all raised by Kubrick's relatives. The black-and-white drama was shot principally at night in a variety of seedy Manhattan locations. The plot, told in an extended flashback, covers two days in the life of boxer Davy Gordon (Jamie Smith) -- he meets nightclub dancer Gloria Price (Irene Kane); the two fall in love, and decide to make their futures somewhere other than New York City. But Gloria is lusted after by

Unrated,

Drama, Mystery & Suspense, Classics

Stanley Kubrick

May 15, 2001

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All Critics (18) | Top Critics (4) | Fresh (15) | Rotten (3) | DVD (3)

Kubrick's low-key lensing occasionally catches the flavor of the seamy side of Gotham life.

May 8, 2007 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A noirish thriller with experimental trimmings that holds back most of the emotions, sensitive as well as otherwise, that threatened to make Kubrick's first feature mawkish.

February 12, 2007 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Kubrick makes the most of flashback and dream sequences, and a surreal climactic fight in a warehouse full of mannequins.

February 9, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Kubrick worked in an uncharacteristically naturalistic style despite the genre material, with mixed but still fascinating results.

May 20, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Faced with hardly any budget to speak of, the 26-year-old Kubrick pulled out every trick that an independent filmmaker of no means could ever hope to stumble upon.

March 31, 2014 Full Review Source: Antagony & Ecstasy
Antagony & Ecstasy

Frankly, it's a pretty wretched story, but this small, cheap film has style to spare.

March 6, 2008 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

Kubrick's second feature shows his promise as a powerful and iconic director in motifs and style.

October 3, 2007 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

It's tense, compelling and steeped in an urban anxiety that's strangely contemporary.

October 3, 2007 Full Review Source: Film4
Film4

Killer's Kiss is no one's idea of a great film but it displays much evidence of future brilliance.

February 12, 2007 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Depois deste filme, Kubrick jamais voltou a trabalhar com roteiros originais, optando apenas por adaptações - uma boa decisão, já que é a história que compromete este longa.

January 8, 2004
Cinema em Cena

Offers some glimpses of what [Kubrick] was capable of doing with no budget and no crew and no actors.

March 17, 2002 Full Review Source: Goatdog's Movies
Goatdog's Movies

Hardly Stanley Kubrick's best work.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Filmcritic.com | Comment (1)
Filmcritic.com

Kubrick has created a sinister noir film.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for Killer's Kiss

Kubrick's second feature, and first noir, is a thrill to watch, if only to see the seeds of a budding legend be sown in front of your very eyes. Without exaggeration, Killer's Kiss features some of the best deep focus long shots I have ever seen, and the visual sophistication Kubrick employs (with a keen emphasis on motif, symbolism and mood lighting) demonstrates that even early on, he was worlds ahead of many of his colleagues in terms of directorial aptitude and his command of cinematic language. No one shot is the same, no one angle is replicated. Unfortunately, the scant running time inhibits any real chance at character development (or narrative development, for that matter) but that's okay -- there's more than enough to marvel at.
February 27, 2012
JonathanHutchings
Jonathan Hutchings

Super Reviewer

Vincent Rapallo: Like the man said, "Can happiness buy money?" 

"Her Soft Mouth Was the Road to Sin-Smeared Violence!"

I found Stanley Kubrick's second directorial effort, Killer's Kiss, to be a pretty solid film. I enjoyed watching this early work from Kubrick. It was good and you can see some of his techniques when it comes to camera work, but that's about the only thing that makes it seem like a Kubrick film. Obviously it was made on a small budget with a no name cast, who I thought was actually decent, and all in all it turned out to be a entertaining film. It's just crazy and cool to think about how Kubrick went from this little, low-budget, hour long romance thriller to films like 2001 and The Shining.  To the world of Kubrick fans, this is kind of considered his first true film, despite the fact that he made Fear and Desire. Kubrick, himself, hated that film and didn't even want people to see it. 

There's cool little sequences in this movie, such as the final fight scene that basically mirrors the boxing match. There's a little hint of what is to come from Kubrick. His great foreshadowing was on display here in an early work. The music seems like it belongs anywhere else as long as that place isn't a Kubrick film. This is the only film from him where I didn't particularly care for the score.

This movie is cool in that it shows the start of an immense talent. It shows a starting point for what would become one of the, if not the, greatest directors of all-time. It's cool to see that he always had an eye for cool shots and how to make a scene awesome visually even without a big budget, cool effects and huge set pieces. If you are a fan of Stanley Kubrick, you need to see this movie.
September 24, 2011
blkbomb
Melvin White

Super Reviewer

This is a solid noir film with a brilliantly staged finale that is not only unique for its time but is tense throughout. It is nowhere near Kubrick's later masterpieces like A Clockwork Orange and 2001, but it is pretty solid for someone only making their second feature.
July 1, 2011
Liam Gadd

Super Reviewer

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