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In Cold Blood (1967) - Plot Summary Poster

(1967)

Plot Summary

  • In meeting in Kansas, ex-cons Perry Smith and Dick Hickock are breaking several conditions of their respective paroles. The meeting, initiated by Dick, is to plan and eventually carry out a robbery based on information he had received from a fellow inmate about $10,000 cash being locked in a hidden safe in the home of the farming Clutter family of Holcomb, Kansas. After the robbery, they plan on going to Mexico permanently to elude capture by the police. Each brings a necessary personality to the partnership to carry out the plan, Dick who is the brash manipulator, Perry the outwardly more sensitive but unrealistic dreamer with a violent streak under the surface. Perry literally carries all his dreams in a large box he takes with him wherever he goes. The robbery does not go according to plan in any respect, the pair who ultimately hogtie and execute all four members of the Clutter family, only coming away from the home with $43 in cash. As Perry and Dick go on the run, a murder investigation ensues, led by Topeka based Detective Alvin Dewey. If Dewey and his team are able eventually to identify the pair as the murderers and capture them, they, if they understand the two, may get their much needed confessions in dividing and conquering. Perry and Dick's fates may also be regardless of who literally pulled the trigger.

    - Written by Huggo
  • Two young men are ineffectual individually, but when together become violent criminals. They break into a wealthy farmer's home only to find that there is nearly no money at the home and murder the entire family to avoid identification. The first part of the film details the search for them, the second, their trial and execution. Taken from the actual events chronicled by Truman Capote in his book.

    - Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>
  • Truman Capote wrote the 'non-fiction novel' from which the film is drawn, using the novelist's craft to render reality. The reality was that at two a.m. on November 15, 1959 in the rural town of Holcomb, Kansas, the four members of the Clutter family were roused from their sleep, bound and gagged, and then brutally murdered by two unknown assailants. After the latters' capture, sentencing and imprisonment prior to execution, Capote researched the case thoroughly, spent weeks talking with the prisoners, Perry Smith and Richard Hickock, jurors, police, friends and neighbors, trying to unearth why such a senseless act was committed, and what society's response might have been.

    - Written by filmfactsman

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