7.3/10
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Born to Kill (1947)

Passed | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 3 May 1947 (USA)
A calculating divorcée risks her chances at wealth and security with a man she doesn't love by getting involved with the hotheaded murderer romancing her foster sister.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Sam
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Esther Howard ...
Kathryn Card ...
Tony Barrett ...
Danny
Grandon Rhodes ...
Inspector Wilson
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
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Conductor (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

In Reno a man kills a girl he likes and her boyfriend out of jealousy; it may not be the first time. A woman whose divorce has just come through finds the bodies but decides not to become involved. The two meet next day on the train to San Francisco unaware of this link between them. They are attracted to each other, and the relationship survives his marriage to her half-sister for money and status. It even survives the woman discovering that he was the murderer, though she may not realise how easily someone who has killed this way before can do so again. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

That "Dillinger" guy's most savage role! See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

3 May 1947 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Deadlier Than the Male  »

Filming Locations:

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Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Arnett's quote, "Where every prospect pleases and only man is vile...", is from the hymn, "From Greenland's Icy Mountains", lyrics by Reginald Heber. See more »

Goofs

They took a train from Reno Nv. to San Fransisco Ca. but the shot of the train coming at the camera head-on is a Pennsylvannia RR streamlined K4 locomotive on their 4 track mainline in Pennsylvannia. See more »

Quotes

Albert Arnett: In that case, I shall have to forge ahead with my inquiry. And may I remind you that Nevada courts have rather puritanical views. Why some of our more impassioned juries even insist that a man who commits murder pay with his life.
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Connections

Referenced in Pretty Little Liars: Stolen Kisses (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

From This Day Forward
(uncredited)
Music by Leigh Harline
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User Reviews

 
Darker and more perverse than you can possibly imagine!
3 December 2006 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

The oft-wasted (in both senses of the word) Lawrence Tierney is seen to much better effect than usual in Born to Kill, truly one of the most perverse noir romances of all time. The two leads aren't ill-starred lovers or victims of fate, they're born bad and they know it - indeed, nothing gets them hotter than talking about dead bodies. There is a rather worrying subtext that this is down to their lower-class birth, but you get the impression even if they had been born in high society that these two would have shown up the Borgias for the amateurs they were. At times it's hard to tell who is the more ruthless, Tierney's calculating but none-too-bright bull-headed murderous thug or Claire Trevor's magpie in the nest, who may not actually kill but probably does far worse - as Esther Howard says, she carries her own curse inside of her. There's great support from Elisha Cook ("I'm a baaad boy!") and, especially, Walter Slezak, superb as the wistfully philosophical private detective on their trail, open to the best offer going from either side but still not the stereotyped corrupt P.I. you expect from the genre, and refreshingly he isn't given the fate you expect either thanks to a constantly unexpected script by Eve Greene and Richard Macaulay. The tarnished, slightly grubby conscience of a film noir like no other, he's the closest thing Robert Wise's superb movie has to a hero.

Warners R1 DVD boasts a fine transfer and an excellent audio commentary by Eddie Muller that includes some outrageous Tierney stories for good measure. Highly recommended, and how!


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George W. Bush theboov
kinda boring... i prefer 'Dillinger' to this... Zewolf
'Bad cess to me?' mackjay2
Loved the clothes! Noir-It-All
Film stock used in this film Aizza23-1
They stole that line! ksf-2
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