6.1/10
694
41 user 23 critic

The Death Kiss (1932)

Passed | | Comedy, Crime, Drama | 8 January 1933 (USA)
While filming the closing scene of "The Death Kiss", leading man Myles Brent is actually killed. Having played around with, or been married to, most of the women connected with the movie ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(book) (as Madelon St. Denis), (screen play) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

Watch Now

Free at Internet Archive

WATCH NOW
ON DISC
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

When delusional madman Roxor kidnaps a scientist in hopes of using his death ray to achieve world dominance, he is opposed by Chandu, a powerful hypnotist and yogi.

Directors: William Cameron Menzies, Marcel Varnel
Stars: Edmund Lowe, Irene Ware, Bela Lugosi
The Devil Bat (1940)
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

A mad scientist develops an aftershave lotion that causes his gigantic bats to kill anyone who wears it.

Director: Jean Yarbrough
Stars: Bela Lugosi, Suzanne Kaaren, Dave O'Brien
Crime | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A mad scientist seeks to mingle human blood with that of an ape, and resorts to kidnapping women for his experiments.

Director: Robert Florey
Stars: Bela Lugosi, Sidney Fox, Leon Ames
Crime | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Insurance agent-physician collects on policies of men murdered by a disfigured resident of the home for the blind where he acts as doctor-on-call.

Director: Walter Summers
Stars: Bela Lugosi, Hugh Williams, Greta Gynt
The Raven (1935)
Crime | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A brilliant surgeon obsessed with Edgar Allan Poe saves the life of a beautiful dancer and goes mad when he can't have her.

Director: Lew Landers
Stars: Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Lester Matthews
Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

Kindly soup kitchen operator and professor of criminology Bela Lugosi uses his soup kitchen as a front for a criminal gang who commit a series of daring robberies and murders. When things ... See full summary »

Director: Wallace Fox
Stars: Bela Lugosi, John Archer, Wanda McKay
Horror | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A scientist becomes murderous after discovering, and being exposed to the radiation of, a powerful new element called Radium X.

Director: Lambert Hillyer
Stars: Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Frances Drake
Night Monster (1942)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Kurt Ingston, a rich recluse, invites the doctors who left him a hopeless cripple to his desolate mansion in the swamps as one by one they meet horrible deaths.

Director: Ford Beebe
Stars: Bela Lugosi, Lionel Atwill, Leif Erickson
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  

The town's leading citizen becomes a homicidal maniac after his wife deserts him.

Director: Joseph H. Lewis
Stars: Bela Lugosi, Polly Ann Young, John McGuire
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A skeptical college professor discovers that his wife has been practicing magic for years. Like the learned, rational fellow he is, he forces her to destroy all her magical charms and ... See full summary »

Director: Sidney Hayers
Stars: Peter Wyngarde, Janet Blair, Margaret Johnston
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

The heirs to a family fortune are required to attend a seance at the spooky old family mansion. However, throughout the night members of the family are being killed off one by one.

Director: Benjamin Stoloff
Stars: Bela Lugosi, Wallace Ford, Sally Blane
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.3/10 X  

A scientist, aided by an old hag and her two sons, kills virginal brides, steals their bodies, and extracts gland fluid to keep his ancient wife alive and young.

Director: Wallace Fox
Stars: Bela Lugosi, Luana Walters, Tristram Coffin
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
Alexander Carr ...
...
Harold Minjir ...
Howell
...
Script Girl
...
Assistant Director
Harold Waldridge ...
Charlie (as Harold Waldrige)
Wade Boteler ...
Sergeant Hilliker
...
Todd
Edit

Storyline

While filming the closing scene of "The Death Kiss", leading man Myles Brent is actually killed. Having played around with, or been married to, most of the women connected with the movie studio, there are lots of suspects. When leading lady Marcia Lane is arrested for the killing, her suiter, a studio writer, starts to investigate the killing in order to prove her innocence. Written by Ron Kerrigan <mvg@whidbey.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Movie star MURDERED! KILLER on the loose!


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 January 1933 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bacio mortale  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(copyright length) | (TCM print)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Color:

(hand-colored sequences)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The failure of the original copyright holder to renew the film's copyright resulted in it falling into public domain, meaning that virtually anyone could duplicate and sell a VHS/DVD copy of the film. Therefore, many of the versions of this film available on the market are either severely (and usually badly) edited and/or of extremely poor quality, having been duped from second- or third-generation (or more) copies of the film. See more »

Quotes

Det. Lt. Sheehan: It's as simple as A-B-C.
Franklyn Drew: Yes it would be if you thought of it.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Lugosi: Hollywood's Dracula (1997) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A Fun Mystery With a Very Effective Early Technical Gimmick
18 August 2006 | by (Kentucky) – See all my reviews

"The Death Kiss" (1933) should be a nice surprise for those who like traditional murder mysteries. It's a movie within a movie and both have the same title, which refers to the on- screen murder of movie star Myles Brent during the filming of the last scene of a film called the "The Death Kiss". He is shot while playing a scene in which he is shot, a development that was about to be written off by the police as a prop man's accident until they discovered that the bullet was a different caliber than the guns being used in the production.

The police then turn their attentions to his co-star and ex-wife Marsha Lane (Andienne Ames) which inspires her boyfriend (David Manners) to do some amateur sleuthing to track down the real murderer.

"The Death Kiss" could qualify as the first buddy picture as he is closely assisted by his friend Officer 'Gully' Gulliver (Vince Barnett), a bumbling studio security guard who provides the film's comic relief. The mix of serious murder mystery and comedy is in perfect proportion and Barnett gives a truly exceptional performance. Much of the humor comes from the pair's ability to stay just ahead of the police, much to the irritation of the detectives doing the investigation and to the crowing delight of Gully.

There are an array of suspects (Brent would not have won a popularity contest) besides Miss Lane including studio executives Joseph Steiner (Bela Lugosi), Leon Grossman (Alexander Carr) and Tom Avery (Edward Van Sloan). Lugosi's name and likeness headline the DVD package and while his part is substantial, it is still just that of a supporting character.

There are enough red herrings to keep the viewer guessing and the pacing is quite fast even with limited action sequences. There are significant advantages associated with setting a screenplay in a movie studio. The cost savings in set design, the appeal of the movie industry to viewers, and the fact that the writer can draw upon occupations with which he is familiar to give the script convincing authenticity.

One thing to watch for is the use of color in a few sequences in this otherwise black and white film. When there is a fire in the projection booth and later a chase scene with flashlights, the producers enhanced the effect with an amber tint. This was applied to the prints (at least some of them) by stencils, which masked the majority of the frame so artists could color in the portion that was to be amber. Since there are 24 frames per second it was only necessary to apply this process to every other or every third frame to get the effect, but it was still an extremely labor-intensive process. "The Death Kiss" was not the first time this was done but it was the most effective because the cinematography made excellent use of light and shadow, with the contrast nicely enhancing the effect of the amber frames. Technically this gimmick was a forerunner of stuff like "Smell-o-vision", "Emergo", "Illusion- o", and "Sensurround".

The DVD and TMC prints are serviceable but obviously worse for the wear. There are a number of audio and video dropouts but the story seems to be complete.

Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child.


23 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss The Death Kiss (1932) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?