Amid a semi-documentary portrait of New York and its people, Jean Dexter, an attractive blonde model, is murdered in her apartment. Homicide detectives Dan Muldoon and Jimmy Halloran ... See full summary »
Tough L.A. private eye Mike Hammer gives a ride to Christina, a frightened young woman he finds running along the road one night. His car is run off the road by unseen thugs. Hammer is knocked out and Christina is tortured in an unsuccessful attempt to get information from her. They are put back into Hammer's car which then is forced off a cliff. Hammer wakes up in the hospital. Velda, his trusty secretary, informs him that Christina is dead. Pat Chambers, Mike's policeman friend, tells him to stay off the case, but Mike thinks it might be a big story--meaning big money for him--because the FBI is interested. He, Velda, and Nick, his garage mechanic friend, start investigating in hopes of finding out why Christina was killed. Written by
The Kefauver Commission, a federal unit dedicated to investigating corrupting influences in the 1950s, singled this out as 1955's number one menace to American youth. Because of this, Robert Aldrich felt compelled to conduct a writing campaign for the free speech rights of independent film-makers. See more »
The black 1954 Corvette that Hammer drives was available only as a 6 cylinder with automatic transmission; the sound that is dubbed is of a 4 cylinder with manual transmission. See more »
Tough and surreal Noir classic gets better and better with age.
'Kiss Me Deadly' is an overlooked crime gem that has proved to be a major influence on subsequent film makers from the French New Wave to cult classics 'Repo Man' and 'Pulp Fiction'. It's a movie which gets better and better with age. Director Robert Aldrich manages to put lots of style and interesting touches which sometimes border on the surreal into this toughest of tough guy movies. Ralph Meeker ('Paths Of Glory', 'The Dirty Dozen', 'The Anderson Tapes') is well cast as Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer. Meeker's Hammer is brutal and his performance really makes this one work. The supporting cast are all very good too, especially Albert Dekker ('The Wild Bunch') as Dr Soberin and Maxine Cooper as Hammer's "assistant" Velda. Also keep an eye out for the debut of Cloris Leachman is the striking opening sequence. The "great whatsit" which Hammer searches for is one of the great movie gimmicks, and the ending will blow you away - literally. I loved this movie from beginning to end. I think it ranks alongside 'Out Of The Past' (Tourneur), 'The Asphalt Jungle' (Huston), 'Double Indemnity' (Wilder), 'The Killing' (Kubrick) and 'The Killers (Siegel)' as one of the greatest and most influential American crime movies, and I'm sure Scorcese and Tarantino would be the first to agree. Highly recommended.
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