The Killers

Critics Consensus

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.



Total Count: 24
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Movie Info

Based on an Ernest Hemingway short story, this cult classic stars Lee Marvin and Clu Gulagher as a pair of hit men assigned to kill John Cassavetes, a teacher at a school for the blind. After committing the crime, they try to piece together the man's past.


Lee Marvin
as Charlie
Angie Dickinson
as Sheila Farr
Ronald Reagan
as Browning
John Cassavetes
as Johnny North
Claude Akins
as Earl Sylvester
Virginia Christine
as Miss Watson
Don Haggerty
as Mail Truck Driver
Kathleen O'Malley
as Receptionist
Ted Jacques
as Gym Assistant
Irvin Mosley
as Mail Truck Guard
Jimmy Joyce
as Salesman
Davis Roberts
as Maitre D'
Hal Brock
as Race Marshal
Burt Mustin
as Elderly Man
Peter Hobbs
as Instructor
Tyler McVey
as Steward
Seymour Cassel
as Postal Clerk
Scott Hale
as Hotel Clerk
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Critic Reviews for The Killers

All Critics (24) | Top Critics (5)

  • Siegel's terse, seething, and stylish direction glows with the blank radiance of sheet metal in sunlight; the movie's bright primary colors and glossy luxuries are imbued with menace, and its luminous delights convey a terrifyingly cold world view.

    Aug 28, 2017 | Full Review…
  • 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…
    TIME Magazine
    Top Critic
  • Ronald Reagan fails to crash convincingly through his goodguy image in his portrayal of a ruthless crook.

    Mar 26, 2009 | Full Review…

    Variety Staff

    Top 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.

    Mar 12, 2008 | Full Review…
  • 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.

    Jun 24, 2006 | Full Review…

    Geoff Andrew

    Time Out
    Top Critic
  • Marvin is the un-McQueen. Not handsome, unconcerned with the audience and therefore compelling, he is distant and takes things personally. He's too smart to be monumental like other movie stars, but when he falls it's like a world got killed.

    Nov 29, 2018 | Full Review…

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