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This is a sort of modern day film noir directed by Bill Bennett and stars Matt Day and Frances O'Connor. Day and O'Connor play a young couple in Austrila who are a couple of con artists and they mostly scam married men who pick up O'Connor in a bar. Things are going good until someone actually dies and they wind up with a videotape, on that videotape is a celebrity named Zipper Doyle, who is a football star, and he's having sex with a young boy. Day and O'Connor go on the run with both the police looking for them and Doyle trying to kill them. There are several more deaths but you don't see who murders who and Day and O'Connor get to the point where they can't trust each other. It's a pretty good movie that was a huge hit in Austrilia.
Day, Barry Langrishe, Chris Haywood, Andrew S. Gilbert, Max Cullen, Barry Otto. First impression is another road movie with two young lovers doing the Badlands. Director Bill Bennett is not that stupid. He has managed to add a twist in the genre, adding that extra spice. Yes, the fugitives are young and beautiful, with personality to keep one interested. But do they really know each other. Wherever they spend the night, a throat is sliced. Who could it be? Do they know each other that well? The entire movie is based on our perception of others. Do we really know much about our close ones. Even the detectives, (on the young lovers trail), have a moment over breakfast when one reveals a past the other never knew about. And for the general public, there is the character Zipper, an ex-footballer admired by everyone. But a video tape in the possession of our heroes reveals his inner evil. Matt and Frances do a fine job in a movie without a script, (they worked on a plot outline and the rest just happened). The great moments occur with the detectives played by Haywood and Gilbert, two skilled actors who bounce off each other so well that you sometimes feel as if you are watching a documentary. The technics used with the jump-cuts is an old one but works here. Just glad they didn't give us a picturesque of the Australian outback.
The comments from "Niro" have really got it right. This movie seems to
belong squarely in that niche genre, the couple caught up in violence,
lovers on the run. And it *is* that, and does as good a job of it as I've
seen, even while breaking out of your expectations for that story
Some of the plot development is worth reserving as a surprise; so I can't be specific about my satisfaction that this movie does not, after all, celebrate or justify violence -- as some other entries in this subgenre callously slip into doing.
All the performances were carried out well. I particularly liked Barry Otto in a smallish but crucial supporting role, and am fast learning to stop confusing him with Geoffrey Rush.
From the superbly jumpy cinematography to the tremendous performances from
the leads, this is the "lovers on the run" film that you likely thought
you'd seen already... until you see it.
An obviously indie film set in Australia, this is a look at two small time cons (the remarkable Frances O'Connor & Matt Day) who stumble onto the wrong mark.
OK, so you say you've still seen this before. Kiddie porn, an ex-big league Aussie soccer player, oddball characters you really haven't ever witnessed and some surprisingly (unstereotypically) good cops make this a wonderful treat.
This is what the dreadful "Thelma and Louise," the somewhat better "Thunderbolt and Lightfoot" and all those road films which followed should have been.
Rent it, buy it, or miss out,
4 Niro~Stars [of 4]
The attention-grabbing beginning of this movie finds two scam artists,
having accidentally killed a victim, stumbling on the possibility of
blackmailing a football star, and setting in motion a quirky road movie with
hints of black humour.
I have to say, this sketchy synopsis recalls the type of plotline the Coen brothers might use. This is slightly misleading - the film is darker, less gimmicky and ultimately less fun than standard Coen brothers fare - but nonetheless the film does share several of the brothers' failings - noticeably an inability to create a consistent tone or convincing psychologies for the lead characters. We know the most important character suffered severe trauma as a child, yet we learn little about her other than that, and her boyfriend seems an even bigger mystery.
Also, to illustrate the problems the film has with tone, the film has noirish themes, but has incongruously bright sunny photography. It also contains one brilliantly funny sequence, in which a cop finds he knows his partner less well than he thought, but frankly this scene looks like it comes from another movie.
However, the film is always watchable. It does look attractive, even if its main stylistic tic - continual jump cuts, presumably in homage to Godard - does jar after a while. Moreover, a brash, confident central performance from Frances O'Connor definitely holds the attention, and I did feel that I cared for her basically hard-to-like character.
Although the film is only a partial success, it still looks like the type of film that could develop a cult following.
I thoroughly enjoyed Kiss or Kill. I thought it was well acted, stylistically shot and terribly romantic! I recommend this film for couples that want to make it a Blockbuster night. Written and directed by Bill Bennett, this movie is about two cons who accidentally end up on the wrong side of the law and on the lam. Frances O'Connor absolutely sizzles stealing almost every scene. Matt Day holds his own as her tough as nails boyfriend with the big heart. Kiss or Kill's supporting cast charms as well with each character introduced breathing new life, meaning and comedy to the movie. I didn't think there was one bad performance in it. Kiss or Kill was witty, clever and, in some scenes laugh out loud funny. Kiss or Kill get's my seal of approval. Bust out the popcorn!
This is probably one of my favorite movies.I first saw Kiss or Kill when it first came out in 1997.It is not your run of the mill road movie it is more complex.There is a sense of paranoia between the lead characters throughout which adds to the mystery of the whole movie.I highly recommend this movie and I hope it comes out on DVD soon.9 out of 10****
Any film that is prefaced with an extract from a Dylan Thomas poem deserves some praise and this film doesn't disappoint in most departments. This is essentially a film for students of film because it plays with so many cinematic conventions and mixes seemingly irreconcilable genres. Kiss or Kill is both film noir and a road movie, playing both genres against each other with the aid of Godardian jump-cuts to heighten the uneasiness and underlying menace the film evokes so well. In this sense, the film is visually audacious and technically brilliant and that's thanks to the direction which is on-target most of the time. My only gripe was the inclusion of some dubious story lines that detracted from the film's overall uneasy effect. Thankfully the acting of both leads compensates such flaws. Worth watching with a Film Theory book in one hand and popcorn in the other.
The only other Bill Bennett film I've seen is TWO IF BY SEA, but after this unusual and entertaining film, he's forgiven. This was nothing like I expected it to be. Sure, it's a crime movie, lovers-on-the-run movie, and a road movie, but it's a whole lot more. We get to care about the characters a lot more than we would in a formula Hollywood picture, and we also explore the relationship between Nikki and Al. Bennett's style also fits, with his use of jump-cutting and no music on the soundtrack. If there was a fault with this film, it's that sometimes I was a little confused about where the plot was going, but that's only a quibble. The twists this movie takes will definitely keep you interested, and Bennett deserves praise for going off the beaten path.
Bill Bennett and the entire crew put together a great film in "Kiss or
Kill." After first viewing the trailer on the VHS of The Jackal, I
waited two years before coming across this movie. Both Matt Day and
Francis O'Connor play a great role. The story is marvelously put
together and one you will have to watch closely. This movie was the
breakout role for Francis O'Connor, which she can also be seen in
Bedazzled, Windtalkers, and About Adam.
This film made me a fan of Australian film. Much better than a 6.3 ranking, head over to overstock.com and pick up a copy. It is only, ONLY, $2.00. Best two bucks you'll ever spend! Highly recommended!
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