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The Killing (1956) Movie Information

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The Killing (1956)
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Drama, Crime





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Stanley Kubrick


Sterling Hayden
Vince Edwards
Coleen Gray
Jay C. Flippen
Elisha Cook Jr.
Marie Windsor





Plot Outline:

A group of men try to knock off a horse track in an elaborate plan to make them all rich when something goes wrong.

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Quick Movie Reviews

Snoogans 04/29/2012 (0 of 0 found this helpful)

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A meticulously crafted and very influential caper film. It stays wound tight, even when the story has things becoming unwound and the characters are well defined in their roles with the heist. The ending carries a great irony that I liked. One of Kubrick's most satisfying films.

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dukeakasmudge 10/18/2011 (0 of 0 found this helpful)

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Not as good as I was hoping

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mitchellyoung 07/31/2011 (0 of 0 found this helpful)

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Leave it to Stanley Kubrick to craft one of the best noirs of all time. Everything works pitch-perfect here - the dark characters, the thematic sense of foreboding, the beautiful black and white cinematography, and the masterfully complex plot.

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Full Movie Reviews


09/09/2013 (0 of 0 found this helpful)

Stanley without the Kubrick.

One of Stanley Kubrick's earlier works, The Killing goes about as far as a Kubrick day-dream may go. The elements are there, but it's not as great at the end.

Let's just say it wasn't what I expected from the master. I can't call this a half-a*s Stanley Kubrick film, because it was one of his first directorial efforts, made for $320 000.
But all of his films contained a quality of fascination, this one doesn't. It's about as standard a crime film as they come, with some intelligent scenes and characters intercut.

The direction of course was great. The lighting in the movie was beautiful. Never did smoke ascending through a lamp shade seem so fascinating. When you don't have color, use what you have to make it look good.

It's probably Kubrick's worst script, though. While still s...

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  Daniel Corleone
Daniel Corleone
Movie God

10/22/2012 (0 of 0 found this helpful)

The Killing review

One of the influential and best film noir heist films ever produced. Johnny Clay (Sterling Hayden) creates a team consisting of a corrupt cop Randy (Ted de Corsia), betting window teller (Elisha Cook Jr.), wrestler Maurice (Kola Kwariani), track employee (Joe Sawyer) and a guns-man with an accurate aim (Timothy Carey) to steal two million dollars. Well paced (surprisingly coming from the legendary director), detailed narration, interesting characters and skillful direction were noticeable. Score was apt and performances were sincere. Wonderful screenplay with lines: "You have not yet learned that in this life you have to be like everyone else - the perfect mediocrity; no better, no worse." from Maurice and "You've got a great big dollar sign there where most women have a heart." from R...

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Movie God

03/02/2012 (0 of 0 found this helpful)

"The Killing" by Yojimbo

Fresh out of prison, a career criminal cooks up an ingenious scheme to rob a racetrack. The Killing is an early film from Stanley Kubrick and yet another masterclass. He takes to the visual trappings of Film Noir and creates one of the most efficiently told and tautly directed heist films ever made. Sterling Hayden is perfect as the straight-talking, street-wise mastermind, as is Marie Windsor's Machiavellian femme fatale who twists doomed sap Elisha Cook Jr round her little finger. So much of this film has influenced some of the best directing talent working today that it still feels remarkably contemporary; Tarantino owes much to the over-lapping timeline in particular and the mix of off beat characters, violent crime and cruel twists of fate is straight out of a Cohen brothers movie (T...

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