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Natural Born Killers (1994)

 -  Crime | Drama  -  26 August 1994 (USA)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 142,185 users   Metascore: 74/100
Reviews: 568 user | 123 critic | 20 from Metacritic.com

Two victims of traumatized childhoods become lovers and psychopathic serial murderers irresponsibly glorified by the mass media.

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(story), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Ed Wilson, Mallory's Dad
Everett Quinton ...
Deputy Warden Wurlitzer
...
London Boy
...
Deputy Warden Kavanaugh
...
Mallory's Mom
...
Lanny Flaherty ...
Earl
...
Mabel
...
...
Sonny
...
...
Pinball Cowboy
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Storyline

The misadventures of Mickey and Mallory: outcasts, lovers, and serial killers. They travel across Route 666 conducting psychadelic mass-slaughters not for money, not for revenge, just for kicks. Glorified by the media, the pair become legendary folk heroes; their story told by the single person they leave alive at the scene of each of their slaughters. Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

media | murderer | violence | killer | satire | See more »

Taglines:

A bold new film that takes a look at a country seduced by fame, obsessed by crime and consumed by the media. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for extreme violence and graphic carnage, for shocking images, and for strong language and sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

26 August 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Asesinos por naturaleza  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$34,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

£3,923,239 (UK) (17 March 1995)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

Color:

| (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Kathy Long:  is the female police officer who beats up Mickey at the pharmacy. See more »

Goofs

No-one would be physically or mentally capable of casually walking around a shop after being bitten by a rattlesnake. However, as director Oliver Stone points out on his DVD commentary track, the snakebites are not supposed to be taken literally, but as a metaphoric infusion of 'knowledge' from the Indian shaman. He acknowledges that in reality, they should be dead, but he argues that the film is not a realistic depiction of reality. See more »

Quotes

Dwight McClusky: Love makes the world go round, heh heh heh.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The end credits are superimposed over a vast amount of stock footage, ranging from the future of Mickey and Mallory, stock A-Bomb tests, childhood photos of Mickey and Mallory, time-lapse footage, scenes from the movie, and so on. See more »

Connections

Referenced in KHL. Donbass-Avtomobilist (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

If You Were the Woman and I Was the Man
Written by Michael Timmins
Performed by Cowboy Junkies
Courtesy of BMG Music Canada, Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Was it worth all the controversy?
3 July 2002 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Mickey and Mallory Knox are lovers. She is beaten and abused by her father until Mickey rescues her by killing them. Bound together by blood they go on a killing spree across Middle America. As they go they become media celebrities as the television crews glamorise what they do. However it isn't long before they are caught and sent to prison. However a live television interview with Mickey offers him the chance to turn events to his advantage.

Stone's film was cursed with controversy in the UK. Mostly because it was seen as glamorising or trivialising serial killers but also because it had been originally a script by Tarantino, who had already had one film banned in the UK at this point. The media frenzy was uncalled for because really the film takes swipes at the media for the way they build killers up into minor stars, with column inches and TV specials etc. However the film benefited from the hype by covering over the fact that it isn't really a very good film!

The first half is mainly them killing people, and can get pretty unpleasant and relentless to watch. The second half allows for more comment on the media etc and is better for it – despite still having violence glamorised to some extent. The film is Stone trying to be hip and almost getting it. He uses comic book images and inter-cut shots of violence etc to show what's in the characters heads during the film. It is quite well done but doesn't feel like Stone.

Sadly his content lets him down. Only bits of the second half feel like he's making some kind of point and this is almost nullified by the fact that the violence of the first half is so well put together and full of clever ideas (like basing them on old TV shows) that it could be accused on being hypocritical by attacking the media for glamorising killers. However he does get good performances.

Woody Harrelson (Woody in Cheers! What have they done to you?) is really good if a little too convincing. Lewis is OK but I always find her whiney voice to be irritating. Solid roles are put in by the support cast – and they are used to illustrate the points made in the second half. Robert Downey Jnr is great, Tom Sizemore is good and Tommy Lee Jones just plays a cartoon character.

As a pop-culture movie it's worth watching as the video editing etc is really effective (even if it does feel like an old man trying to fit in), however as social comment it is bogus and has been done better elsewhere. The second half is worth watching but sadly this means having to sit through the whole first hour.

Overall this only made money in the UK because the media frenzy around it where all the `we'll all be killed in our beds' tabloids made a big deal out of it. Without that this would have been a failed message movie that falls into the very trap that it criticises others for – glamorising violence and murderers. Worth watching for the visual effects and nothing more.


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