6.3/10
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9 user 9 critic

The Name of the Game Is Kill! (1968)

A desert family offers a traveling stranger its hospitality, but the stranger doesn't realize exactly what they have in store for him.

Director:

Gunnar Hellström (as Gunnar Hellstrom)

Writer:

Gary Crutcher
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Retrospective documentary on the making of the 1968 cult classic "The Name of the Game Is Kill!".

Director: Daniel Griffith
Stars: Jeff Burr, Gary Crutcher, Joe Dante
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Cast

Cast overview:
Jack Lord ... Symcha Lipa
Susan Strasberg ... Mickey Terry
Collin Wilcox Paxton ... Diz Terry (as Collin Wilcox)
Tisha Sterling ... Nan Terry
T.C. Jones T.C. Jones ... Mrs. Terry
Mort Mills ... Sheriff Fred Kendall
Marc Desmond Marc Desmond ... The Doctor
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Storyline

A desert family offers a traveling stranger its hospitality, but the stranger doesn't realize exactly what they have in store for him.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Slowly the suspense tightens...and tightens as the most unusual shocker of the year grips you in a web of fear and terror! See more »

Genres:

Thriller

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

May 1968 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Lovers in Limbo See more »

Filming Locations:

Sedona, Arizona, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$325,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Poore-Todd Productions See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Curtis Harrington and Roman Polanski were both briefly attached as directors while Rock Hudson was considered to play the lead. Moreover, when Polanski was in the running to direct he wanted to change the main character from a Hungarian refugee to a Polish one. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Dark Side of Eden: The Making of 'Stanley' (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Shadows
Written by Michael Z. Gordon (as Mike Gordon) and Stu Phillips
Sung by The Electric Prunes
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User Reviews

 
Well ... Who wants to play?
20 November 2007 | by CoventrySee all my reviews

Another sadly forgotten late 60's shocker, "The Name of the Game is Kill" features pretty much all the ingredients cult-cinema collectors could be looking for. The title alone will make certain people (= me) froth at the mouth, apparently the original spool went missing for several years (or so I read) and – last but not least – it has one of those typically engaging & challenging 60's promotional taglines! The VHS copy I held in my dirty little hand shout out: "You can't buy a ticket for this movie unless you sign a pledge not to reveal the surprise shock ending to anyone!" Call me easily enticed, but that's what I call salesmanship. The plot is wondrously weird and full of unpredictable twists – albeit cheesy and absurd twists – and demented character. The handsome Hungarian stranger Sim passes through a remote little US town and gets invited to the home of the uncanny Terry family. Mother Terry lives with her three daughters and a bizarre collection of poisonous snakes and tarantulas. The second oldest daughter Mickey is adorable, but the other women in the house behave somewhat odd and hostile. Sim nearly dies the next morning and ends up in the hospital were a dodgy Sheriff advises him not to go back there. Naturally he doesn't listen and returns to the house, only to encounter some of the freakiest family rituals and traditions imaginable. The movie is mysteriously compelling, original, well-directed and … swinging! The soundtrack is quite awesome and it definitely helps you, along with the masterful photography, to get through the overly talkative and slightly tedious moments. And I'm pleased to say the VHS cover didn't lie! Although the ending certainly won't sweep you off your feet, the last 20-25 minutes are offbeat, creepy, convoluted and even somewhat disturbing. But most of all, the climax is deliciously insane! Sure the idea will have crossed your mind at the beginning of the film, but when the big twist eventually becomes revealed, you still don't expect it. Just the way we love it. Recommended, if you can find a copy.


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