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Kalifornia (1993)

6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 35,578 users   Metascore: 49/100
Reviews: 145 user | 56 critic | 17 from Metacritic.com

A journalist duo go on a tour of serial killer murder sites with two companions, unaware that one of them is a serial killer himself.

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(story), (story), 1 more credit »
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3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Kathy Larson ...
Teenage Girl (as Catherine Larson)
David Milford ...
Driver
...
John Zarchen ...
Peter
David Rose ...
Eric
...
Tommy Chappelle ...
Old Man
...
...
Parole Officer
James Michael McDougal ...
John Diebold (as J. Michael McDougal)
...
Carol
...
Police Officer
Marisa Raper ...
Little Girl
Bill Crabb ...
Middle Aged Farmer (as Bill Crabbe)
Edit

Storyline

Brian Kessler, a journalist researching serial killers, and his photographer girlfriend Carrie set out on a cross-country tour of the sites of the killings. Sharing the ride and their expenses are Early Grayce, a paroled white trash criminal, and his girlfriend Adele. As the trip progresses, Early begins to appear more and more unstable, and Brian and Carrie begin to fear that they may have a real-life killer in the back seat of their car. Written by Scott Renshaw <as.idc@forsythe.stanford.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

fear never travels alone See more »

Genres:

Crime | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence, and for sexuality and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 September 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Kalifornia  »

Box Office

Budget:

$9,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$2,395,231 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (unrated)

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

During the movie, Early Grace sports a chipped tooth. Brad Pitt visited a dentist to have the tooth chipped for the role. See more »

Goofs

The amount of vodka in Carrie's glass changes inconsistently between shots while she's sitting on the couch, watching her slides, trying to convince Brian to go to California. See more »

Quotes

Brian Kessler: [narrating] Early seemed harmless. Primitive, but harmless. Of course, the fact of the matter was that he'd killed his landlord less than an hour before we met him. He was even wearing the guy's ring. Who knows what he did with the finger.
See more »


Soundtracks

Strong Enough
Written by Sheryl Crow, David Ricketts, Kevin Gilbert, Bill Bottrell,
David Baerwald, Brian MacLeod
Performed by Sheryl Crow
Courtesy of A&M Records, Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Between the huge flaws are some huge talents, and amazing moments
7 September 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Kalifornia (1993)

Juliet Lewis rules on this one, and Brad Pitt is right behind. The two of them make one of the most memorable outlaw couples ever, believe it or not. Lewis is the clueless girlfriend, willingly abused by Pitt, the knee-jerk killer. The two have to leave the state and they get a ride in a big old convertible with another couple, smart and styling and at first disdainful of this hick pair they are suddenly driving cross country with.

This could have been a great movie, a classic. Lewis and Pitt are so convincing, and so original, really, playing with humor and without grandiose notions, which inflate so many other films. Individually they carve out chilling, and yet also warm, pictures of who they are, real people, and unexpected ones. The mannerisms that Lewis pulls out in every scene, her dumb looks, her surprise, this is all virtuosic.

What drags them down is the other couple. David Duchovny is especially wooden. You can feel him wanting us to think he's a likable, even-keeled, handsome hunk. But he's just plain dull, and he is ostensibly the main character. It's his voice that comes in like a bad bad film noir narrator now and then, giving some perspective to the events. It's unnecessary monologue, to boot, and straight out of screen writing 101. For some reason Duchovny's character, a struggling writer working on a book about psycho killers, is given the most mundane and overused lines. His girlfriend, a slightly touch looking photographer played by Michelle Forbes, has to work through her part at first, but eventually comes into her own, with knowing glances and a growing sense of fear.

The other true star, beyond Pitt and Lewis, is the cameraman, Bojan Bazelli, working with some great sets and with a director who sets him free. In some scenes, the arrangement of characters just talking, is filled with such space and layer and light, or with such audacious rain, you want them to hold it longer so you can get it all. For all the ugly things that happen, this is a beautiful movie. The director? Dominic Sena, a music video shooter. That's probably why it looked so good and had some stumbles in the bigger vision.

If you go into this expecting something profound, forget about it. But the two performances are worth the admission alone, and even though it gets increasingly violent, which I'm not into, it gets increasingly interesting and gripping as it goes. The set up in the first half hour is groaningly bad at times, but once the four of them hit the road, look out.


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