7.3/10
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70 user 35 critic

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:
...
...
Sam
...
...
...
...
...
Esther Howard ...
Kathryn Card ...
Tony Barrett ...
Danny
Grandon Rhodes ...
Inspector Wilson
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
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:

RELENTLESS SUSPENSE! (original ad - all caps) See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

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

This film did poorly at the box office, resulting in a loss of $243,000 (over $2.63M in 2016) for RKO according to studio records. 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

Mrs. Kraft: Stay for supper, huh, Laury?
Laury Palmer: Aw, can't. I got a date.
Mrs. Kraft: Who with?
Laury Palmer: Danny Jaden.
Mrs. Kraft: That young squirt? Thought you had a new one.
Laury Palmer: I have. Wait till you see him.
Mrs. Kraft: Tell me about him, Laury. What's he like?
Laury Palmer: Well, this big across the shoulders. He moved my trunk around the other day like it was a cracker box. He's the quiet sort. And yet you get the feeling if you stepped out of line he'd kick your teeth down your throat.
Mrs. Kraft: Why, ain't that wonderful?
Laury Palmer: Sure is.
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Soundtracks

Bridal Chorus
(uncredited)
Music by Richard Wagner
Arranged by Roy Webb
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User Reviews

 
An Iceberg of Woman
2 September 2011 | by (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) – See all my reviews

In Reno, the cold-hearted Helen Brent (Claire Trevor) has just divorced from her husband and returns to the boarding house owned by Mrs. Kraft (Esther Howard) to pay her expenses and say goodbye to her and to Mrs. Kraft neighbor and best friend Laury Palmer (Isabel Jewell) since she intends to return to San Francisco early in the morning. Helen goes to a casino to celebrate her divorce and glances at the gambler Sam Wild (Lawrence Tierney) and Laury also goes to the casino with her boyfriend Danny Jaden (Tony Barrett). When Laury sees Sam, she sneaks with Danny since she had dated the gambler. Late night, Danny and Laury go to her house and Sam is waiting for them and kills the couple in the kitchen.

Meanwhile, Helen sees Laury's dog on the street and brings it to the house. When she sees the bodies in the kitchen, she does not report to the police and heads to the train station, where she meets Sam. They travel together and Sam lodges in the Terrace Hotel. When Sam visits Helen, he leans that she lives in the mansion of her foster sister, the millionaire Georgia Staples (Audrey Long) and is the fiancée of the wealthy Fred Grover (Phillip Terry). The gold-digger Sam seduces Georgia and sooner they get married, but the calculating Helen feels horny for Sam. Meanwhile Mrs. Kraft hires the smart and sleazy private eyes Matthew Albert Arnett (Walter Slezak) to investigate the murder of her friend Laury.

"Born to Kill" is a film-noir that tells the story of a cold, greedy and calculating woman that feels desire for a ruthless killer. Claire Trevor performs an ambitious woman that is an iceberg and plans to marry for money with a good man that controls her bad instincts and sees her world collapsing when she meets the amoral killer Sam Wild. Marty 'Mart' Waterman (Elisha Cook Jr.) has a strange friendship with Sam and the fact that they share a double bad in the low-budget hotel may give a hint that they have a homosexual relationship. Walter Slezak has also a great performance in the role of a sleazy character. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "Nascido para Matar" ("Born to Kill")


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