- The Killers (1964 film)
Infobox Film | name = The Killers
caption =The Killers movie poster
producer = Don Siegel
Ernest Hemingway(story) Gene L. Coon
Lee Marvin Angie Dickinson John Cassavetes Ronald Reagan
Richard L. Rawlings
editing = Richard Belding
art direction = Frank Arrigo
released = flagicon|USA
July 7, 1964
runtime = 93 minutes
country = USA
language = English
amg_id = 1:27316
imdb_id = 0058262
"The Killers", sometimes marketed as "Ernest Hemingway's The Killers", is a
1964 crime filmreleased by Universal Studios. It is the second Hollywoodadaptation of Ernest Hemingway's short story of the same name, following a version made in 1946. It was directed by Don Siegeland stars Lee Marvin. It is notable for being Ronald Reagan's last film. At the time of its release, Marvin said that it was his favorite film. [cite news
last = Epstein
first = Dwayne
title = Lee Marvin: The Mind Behind the Muscle
publisher = Outre
url = http://www.tedstrong.com/lee-marvin-outre.shtml
accessdate = 2007-08-09 ]
Charlie (Marvin) and Lee (
Clu Gulager) are well-dressed, professional hitmen hired to kill ex-race car driver Johnny North ( John Cassavetes) — now working as a teacher at a school for the blind. Despite being warned in advance, North does nothing and allows the two men to kill him. Afterwards, Charlie, the older and more experienced of the duo, is bothered by the job. He and Lee decide to track down the people that knew North and find out why their victim didn’t run when he had the chance. This includes his mechanic and best friend Earl Sylvester ( Claude Akins) and his lover Sheila Farr ( Angie Dickinson).
The two killers piece together North's story. He fell in love with Sheila who convinced him to be the getaway driver for an armored car heist masterminded by her boyfriend Jack Browning (Reagan). The job goes wrong when Browning, finding out that what North did, decides to double cross the driver and eventually hire Charlie and Lee to kill him.
Steve McQueenand George Peppardwere considered for the Johnny North role.
Director Don Siegel had originally been hired as director of the earlier 1946 version of the same story, but had been fired. Actress
Virginia Christinehad also appeared in the 1946 version.
According to the
DVDcommentary, leading lady Angie Dickinsonreceived the news during filming that her friend (and rumored romantic partner) President John F. Kennedyhad been shot and killed.
"The Killers" was
Ronald Reagan's last acting role before entering politics, and the only villainin his career. According to Kirk Douglas' autobiography"The Ragman's Son", Reagan hated the movie because of a scene in which he slaps Dickinson.
Marvin received the 1965
BAFTA Award for Best Actorfor this role as well as for his role in " Cat Ballou".
* [http://www.criterion.com/asp/release.asp?id=176&eid=275§ion=essay Criterion Collection essay by Geoffrey O'Brien]
Ronald Reagan films
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