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Killer's Kiss (1955)

Following Fear and Desire, Kubrick began working on ideas for a new boxing film. Due to the commercial failure of his first feature, Kubrick avoided asking for further investments, but began working on a film noir script with Howard O. Sackler. Originally under the title Kiss Me, Kill Me, and then The Nymph and the Maniac, Killer's Kiss is a 67-minute film noir film about a young heavyweight boxer's involvement with a woman being abused by her criminal boss. Like Fear and Desire, it was privately funded by Kubrick's family and friends, with some $40,000 put forward from Bronx pharmacist Morris Bousse. Kubrick began shooting footage on Times Square, and on one night he was approached by curious policemen on Wall Street, to each of whom he gave $20 to keep quiet. Kubrick had the time to do much exploration during the film, discovering new angles and ways to generate imagery, and experimenting with lighting. He initially decided on recording the sound on location but encountered difficulties with shadows from the microphone booms, restricting camera movement. His decision to drop the sound in favor of imagery was a costly one; after 12–14 weeks shooting the picture, he spent some seven months and $35,000 working on the sound. Although the film met with limited commercial success, with mediocre acting, film historian Alexander Walker finds it was "oddly compelling". The film's striking aspects, states Walker, include Kubrick's lighting and photography, and the tone of the film with its urban loneliness and melancholy. One of the film's most prominent scenes is a finale fight in a mannequin warehouse, which while unusual was an intentional metaphor for the way the central characters become other people's puppets and are forced to act against their own will earlier in the film.

Quick facts

Directed by Stanley Kubrick Produced by Stanley Kubrick and Morris Bousel Screenplay by Howard Sackler Story by Stanley Kubrick Starring Frank Silvera Jamie Smith Irene Kane Ruth Sobotka Music by Gerald Fried Cinematography Stanley Kubrick Edited by Stanley Kubrick Production company Minotaur Productions Distributed by United Artists Release dates September 28, 1955 Running time 67 minutes
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Killer's Kiss (1955)

Following Fear and Desire, Kubrick began working on ideas for a new boxing film. Due to the commercial failure of his first feature, Kubrick avoided asking for further investments, but began working on a film noir script with Howard O. Sackler. Originally under the title Kiss Me, Kill Me, and then The Nymph and the Maniac, Killer's Kiss is a 67- minute film noir film about a young heavyweight boxer's involvement with a woman being abused by her criminal boss. Like Fear and Desire, it was privately funded by Kubrick's family and friends, with some $40,000 put forward from Bronx pharmacist Morris Bousse. Kubrick began shooting footage on Times Square, and on one night he was approached by curious policemen on Wall Street, to each of whom he gave $20 to keep quiet. Kubrick had the time to do much exploration during the film, discovering new angles and ways to generate imagery, and experimenting with lighting. He initially decided on recording the sound on location but encountered difficulties with shadows from the microphone booms, restricting camera movement. His decision to drop the sound in favor of imagery was a costly one; after 12–14 weeks shooting the picture, he spent some seven months and $35,000 working on the sound. Although the film met with limited commercial success, with mediocre acting, film historian Alexander Walker finds it was "oddly compelling". The film's striking aspects, states Walker, include Kubrick's lighting and photography, and the tone of the film with its urban loneliness and melancholy. One of the film's most prominent scenes is a finale fight in a mannequin warehouse, which while unusual was an intentional metaphor for the way the central characters become other people's puppets and are forced to act against their own will earlier in the film.

Quick facts

Directed by Stanley Kubrick Produced by Stanley Kubrick and Morris Bousel Screenplay by Howard Sackler Story by Stanley Kubrick Starring Frank Silvera Jamie Smith Irene Kane Ruth Sobotka Music by Gerald Fried Cinematography Stanley Kubrick Edited by Stanley Kubrick Production company Minotaur Productions Distributed by United Artists Release dates September 28, 1955 Running time 67 minutes
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