7.8/10
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The Killers (1946)

Passed | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 30 August 1946 (USA)
Hit men kill an unresisting victim, and investigator Reardon uncovers his past involvement with beautiful, deadly Kitty Collins.

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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 3 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Ole 'Swede' Anderson
... Kitty Collins
... Jim Reardon
... Big Jim Colfax
... Police Lt. Sam Lubinsky
... Charleston
... Lilly Harmon Lubinsky
... 'Dum-Dum' Clarke
Charles D. Brown ... Packy Robinson - Ole's Manager
... R.S. Kenyon
... Al
... Max
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Storyline

Two professional killers invade a small town and kill a gas station attendant, "the Swede," who's expecting them. Insurance investigator Reardon pursues the case against the orders of his boss, who considers it trivial. Weaving together threads of the Swede's life, Reardon uncovers a complex tale of treachery and crime, all linked with gorgeous, mysterious Kitty Collins. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

One Moment with Her...And He Gambled His LUCK...LOVE...and His LIFE! See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 August 1946 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ernest Hemingway's The Killers  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 1956, director Andrei Tarkovsky, then a film student, created a 19-minute short based on the story, entitled The Killers (1956). It is featured on the Criterion Collection DVD release of this film. See more »

Goofs

In the jail house scene, Charleston (Vince Barnett) tells The Swede (Burt Lancaster) of his love for the stars. As he looks out the window, he says that he says he sees Orion and a prominent star, Betelgeuse. He says that Orion is the "Great Bear" and that Betelgeuse is the "brightest star in the sky." Orion is actually The Hunter. Ursa Major (containing the Big Dipper) is the Great Bear. Betelgeuse, while quite bright, is actually the 9th brightest star. See more »

Quotes

Jim Reardon: How much time has he got?
Lieutenant Sam Lubinsky: He's behind schedule now.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Visions of Light (1992) See more »

Soundtracks

With Plenty of Money and You
(1936) (uncredited)
Music by Harry Warren
Played on piano in Lou Tingle's cafe
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Has aged unbelievably well.
11 November 2004 | by See all my reviews

Maybe I've just seen too many old movies, but for me, other than the period fedoras and suits, nothing about this movie would really give away that it's almost 60 years old.

The plot is solid and keeps you guessing until the end, with many twists and turns along the way, and is told asynchronously (perhaps necessary for today's audiences, which may be why it holds up so well). The acting is great, quite realistic, and for the most part avoids the maudlin sentiment and overacting that characterizes some older films.

The Killers is an incredibly enjoyable crime film, perhaps the perfect crime film. I haven't seen the remake, so I can't comment on that, but I hold this film in high regard.


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