The Killing Reviews
Johnny Clay is a veteran criminal who plans to make one last heist before retiring and marrying, he plans to steal two million dollars from a horsetrack with the help of some minor criminals.
Most lovers of the seventh art consider "Paths of Glory" the beginning of the masterful Stanley Kubrick as we know, but I have to disagree with that statement. For me, that honor goes to this underrated heist film. "The Killing" counts with solid performances with the highlights being Sterling Hayden as a charismatic criminal, the camera movements are impeccable, the use of music is excellent, a solid screenplay, an innovating (for the time being) use of fracture storytelling, memorable characters (the ones we get two know), a suspenseful vibe, the built up is so masterfully done that you will be leaning to the screen as the film progresses, powerful and sometimes poetic dialog that provide an extra amount of power to certain scenes; the pacing is adequately fast, and an appropriate and extremely memorable ending. The big issue this film has is its narration. Sure, it helped the 50´s audience to understand the innovative time fracture storytelling but it s not a hard film to follow so it is pretty unnecessary and takes away any ambiguity.
"The Killing" is a film that despite the fact it is a product of the 1950´s, it has everything that's need to endure the test of time. It is undeniably the first masterpiece made by Stanley Kubrick and one of the best heist films ever put to film. It is astonishing how quickly Kubrick learned the art of filmmaking.
The dialogues in this movie is such an amazing and so is the acting, which are the two main things you need to take care when creating a movie and both are really well done here. Plus the story line is authentic and well put together. This movie apparently surprised a lot of other movies of it's time.
These 5 Men Had a $2,000,000 Secret Until One of them told this Woman!
"...In All Its Fury and Violence"
"...Like No Other Picture Since "Scarface" and "Little Caesar"!"
Excellent film from Kubrick starring Hayden, best known to most as Capt Mccluskey in The Godfather. Supposedly was huge influence on Tarantino's Reservoir Dogs.
Rodney Dangerfield reportedly appears as an extra in the racetrack fight scene.
Initial test screenings were poor, citing the non-linear structure as the main problem. Stanley Kubrick was forced to go back and edit the film in a linear fashion, actually making the film even more confusing. In the end, it was released in its original form, and is often cited as being a huge influence on other non-linear films like Reservoir Dogs (1992) and Pulp Fiction (1994).
Stanley Kubrick initially wrote a script outline. He then asked Jim Thompson (writer of The Getaway and The Grifters) to flesh it out with dialog.
Randy Kennan: You jerk, you clown!
[strikes George Peatty]
Randy Kennan: Come on, clown, sing us a chorus from "Pagliacci"!
Johnny Clay: You'd be killing a horse - that's not first degree murder, in fact it's not murder at all, in fact I don't know what it is.
Johnny Clay: A friend of mine will be stopping by tomorrow to drop something off for me. He's a cop.
Joe: A cop? That's a funny kind of a friend.
Johnny Clay: Well, he's a funny kind of a cop.
Johnny Clay: You like money. You've got a great big dollar sign there where most women have a heart.
Fay: Johnny, you've got to run!
Johnny Clay: Eh, what's the difference?