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    About This Item

    Unique ID Code: 0000023033
    Added by: DVD Reviewer
    Added on: 26/9/2001 01:06
    View Changes

    Kiss of Death (UK)

    6 / 10
    2 votes cast
    Rate this item
    Inline Image

    Barabet Schroeder`s gritty thriller
    Certificate: 18
    Running Time: 100 mins
    Retail Price: £15.99
    Release Date:

    In Barabet Schroeder`s gritty thriller, Jimmy Kilmartin is an ex-con who is attempting to set his life straight. However, fate intervenes when he is lured back into a life of crime for one last heist. When a detective offers him his freedom in return for turning on a gangster, he becomes a reluctant pawn caught between federal agents and the mob.

    Special Features:
    Interactive Menus
    Scene Access
    Cast and Crew Video Clips

    Video Tracks:
    Widescreen Anamorphic 1.85:1

    Audio Tracks:
    Dolby Digital 5.1 English

    Subtitle Tracks:
    CC: English

    Directed By:
    Barbet Schroeder

    Written By:

    Stanley Tucci
    Kathryn Erbe
    Helen Hunt
    Nicolas Cage
    Samuel L. Jackson
    David Caruso

    Casting By:
    Paula Herold

    Soundtrack By:
    Trevor Jones

    Director of Photography:
    Luciano Tovoli

    Lee Percy

    Costume Designer:
    Theadora Van Runkle

    Production Designer:
    Mel Bourne

    Barbet Schroeder
    Richard Price
    Susan Hoffman
    Chris Brigham

    Executive Producer:
    Jack Baran

    Twentieth Century Fox

    Your Opinions and Comments

    7 / 10
    This is a rather under-appreciated motion picture and it was never given a satisfactory push in this country. I`d hazard a guess that casual movie-watchers will probably be unaware of its existence. Considering it stars Nic Cage, Sam L Jackson, Helen Hunt and numerous other A-list actors, the reasons for the wide-spread ambivalence are a real mystery.

    The first time I saw the film was when it was screened on network T.V. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by it too. Of course, my low expectations played a really big part in how much I enjoyed it, but it`s a thoroughly satisfying no-nonesense production however you approach it. The story is a solidly plausible affair and the performances are consistenly top-notch throughout.

    "So why isn`t it more well-known?" I hear you cry. Basically, it`s a T.V movie in the body of a cinematic one. Or to put it another way, the money was obviously spent in extensive pre-production (and the actors pay-checks!) rather than on the screen. Maybe the name of the project was the most inappropriate idea of all, as there aren`t any "kisses of death" in it whatsoever, or any mention of anything vaguely related to that particular title. So the behind-the-scenes effort did fall at the last hurdle and it`s a shame they didn`t re-name and re-package the movie for the european market.

    If you expect a thrill-a-minute explosion-fest then you WILL be disappointed because the screenplay/acting/plot are the pivotal driving-forces and NOT exciting visuals (although there are some tense moments of real quality, generated purely by the actors and the narrative). It`s your call really. If a believable crime-story with some human drama is enough to hold your attention for an hour and a half, then this is a must and quasi-T.V movies don`t get any better than this.

    Compared to, say, 15 minutes (De Niro`s latest rental), Kiss of Death is a much more cohesive and entertaining film. The catch-22 drama is particularly resonant and you do feel sympathy for the leading-man (David Caruso). The "wearing a wire" going undercover angle has been seen several times before, but they execute it so effectively here that it almost seems fresh. Above all though, it`s a well-thought-out and believable tale which is evenly paced and well-performed.

    I bought myself this R2 release because it has an Anamorphic print AND 5.1 sound (a big step-up from network T.V!). The A/V quality is very respectable too. The AC3 audio has a spacious sound-stage and the picture is clean and free of distracting enhancements. Surprisingly, there are some extras on offer too!. It`s all press-pack stuff in all honesty (and uninspiring press-pack stuff at that), but at least they`ve gone to the trouble of locating this material. You get one featurette, some brief-ish interviews (titled "soundbites") and a 4:3 trailer.

    Basically, it`s worth a rent (at the very least) and the disc is better than usual for such a low-profile, back-catalogue title.
    posted by Tony Vado on 4/10/2001 05:15