Tuesday, April 22, 2008


Connoisseurs of silver screen cinema, particlularly of the old-time westerns, screwball comedies and noir crime pictures often use the phrase 'they just do not make 'em like they used to,' when describing a certain style that has faded into history. Well in the case of Robert Aldrich's 1955 Mike Hammer film Kiss Me, Deadly the phrase, 'they never made them this way' is probably more appropriate. One of the earliest genre mashing stories that is that is part noir, boiled right down to the ether, part cold war commentary and well ending not with a whimper, but with a bang (and and then whimper), it set an unusual standard for many genre and art-house filmmakers to come. Any film which visually inspired such diverse fair as Raiders of the Lost Ark , Pulp Fiction , Repo Man and Lost Highway is all good in my book. And something tells me that on top of all that, David Mamet might just get a charge out of this film for its level of machismo dialed up to 11 and set to grapple the societal conditionings of the human animal.

Mike Hammer, badass PI and all around misanthrope gets way in over his head when he picks up a mysterious woman half-naked on the side of the road. An investigation involving a rogues gallery of characters along with stupidity, greed and hamfisted blunders. The film goes places that Mickey_Spillane's novel (which the film is really only loosely based on) never went.


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