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The Killers (1964)

 -  Crime | Drama | Mystery  -  7 July 1964 (USA)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 3,877 users  
Reviews: 59 user | 38 critic

Surprised that their contract victim didn't try to run away from them, two professional hit men try to find out who hired them and why.

Director:

(as Donald Siegel)

Writers:

(story), (screenplay)
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Title: The Killers (1964)

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Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Sheila Farr
...
Johnny North
...
Lee
...
Earl Sylvester
...
Mickey Farmer
...
Virginia Christine ...
Miss Watson
Don Haggerty ...
Mail Truck Driver
Robert Phillips ...
George Fleming
Kathleen O'Malley ...
Miss Leslie - the receptionist
Ted Jacques ...
Gym Assistant
Irvin Mosley Jr. ...
Mail Truck Guard (as Irvin Mosley)
Jimmy Joyce ...
Salesman
Davis Roberts ...
Maître D'
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Storyline

Supposedly based on the short story by Ernest Hemingway. In this film noir, two hitmen want to find out why their latest victim (a race car driver!) "just stood there and took it" when they came to shoot him. Ronald Reagan plays a rich, double-crossing bad guy. A young Angie Dickinson (looking just like Ellen Barkin) plays the femme fatale. Written by Mark Logan <marklo@west.sun.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

There is more than one way to kill a man!


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 July 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ernest Hemingway's The Killers  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to Don Siegel, it was the policy at Universal at the time to shoot the last scene of the film first. On that first day of filming, according to Siegel and Clu Gulager, Lee Marvin arrived late and had been drinking, but because he had no dialogue, the scenes were used as shot. See more »

Goofs

Towards end of film, camera shadow is visible on Jack Browning's rifle case as he exits his car. See more »

Quotes

Charlie Strom: Lady, I haven't got the time.
See more »

Connections

Version of The Killers (1946) See more »

Soundtracks

Too Little Time
Music by Henry Mancini
Lyrics by Don Raye
Sung by Nancy Wilson
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Very cool thriller
23 September 2005 | by (Beverley Hills, England) – See all my reviews

I haven't seen Robert Siodmark's 1946 original, but since it's generally accepted to be better than this version; I sure want to see it! Second best, this may be, but that's certainly not to say that this isn't an excellent flick. Lee Marvin steps into the role of a hit-man brilliantly, and his no-nonsense performance really makes the film. He is joined by Clu Gulager as his fellow hit-man and partner into an investigation that comes about through Marvin as he wonders why he was paid so much to kill a former race car driver, who also didn't run away when he had the chance. What follows is a tour de force of gangster pulp fiction as the two hit men pay little visits to the various players in the plot behind the assassination they were contracted to commit. The style of the movie is delicious, and watching these two men stroll around coolly in their expensive suits while interrogating their various victims is a treat indeed. Several modern films, Pulp Fiction most obviously, have taken a lot of influence from this flick and it's always good to know where that influence came from.

The central pairing of Lee Marvin and Clu Gulager is what made the film for me. The way that they populate their scenes is excellent, with one of them doing the talking and the other fiddling around in the background. The way that this is orchestrated gives away a very understated coolness, which the film is always keen to capitalise on. The pair's chemistry is more to do with the style and how they look together than how they interact with each other; and that is right on cue. The Killers also benefits from an excellent support cast, which includes the likes of Ronald Reagan, Angie Dickinson and John Cassavetes. This film can't be considered noir because it's in colour, but this is about as close as you can get to the style without actually being a part of it. The film that it was based on was film noir, and this remake has managed to retain the foundations, even if it has lost the dark picture. On the whole, The Killers is an excellent picture and while what some people say about it being second to the original may be withstanding; I say this is an excellent flick in it's own right.


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You have to get the Criterion 2 Disc set to see this version on DVD .... stalzz64
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