8.0/10
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365 user 133 critic

The Killing (1956)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 6 June 1956 (USA)
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Crooks plan and execute a daring race-track robbery.

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(screenplay), (dialogue) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Johnny Clay
... Fay
... Val Cannon
... Marvin Unger
... Patrolman Randy Kennan (as Ted DeCorsia)
... Sherry Peatty
... George Peatty (as Elisha Cook)
... Mike O'Reilly
... Track Parking Attendant
... Nikki Arcane
Kola Kwariani ... Maurice Oboukhoff
... Leo the Loanshark
... Joe Piano
... Ruthie O'Reilly
Herbert Ellis ... Second American Airlines Clerk
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Storyline

After just being released from a five year stint in prison, Johnny Clay has assembled a five man team, including two insiders, to carry out what he estimates will be a $2 million heist at Lansdowne Racetrack, that take, minus expenses, to be split five ways. Besides Johnny, none of the men truly are criminals in the typical sense. In addition to the other four team members, Johnny has hired two men external to the team to carry out specific functions for a flat fee, the other four who will not meet the two men for hire or know who they are, while the two men for hire will not be told of the bigger picture of the heist. None involved are to tell anyone, even their loved ones, about the job, each of the five who has a specific reason for wanting his share of the money: Johnny, in wanting to get married to his longtime girlfriend Fay, the two who have known each other since they were kids, realizes that to live comfortably, he has to shoot for the moon instead of carrying out the penny ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

These 5 Men Had a $2,000,000 Secret Until One of them told this Woman! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

6 June 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bed of Fear  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$320,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Marie Windsor landed the part of Sherry Peatty after Stanley Kubrick saw her performance in The Narrow Margin (1952). See more »

Goofs

The bird in the cage (after George has shot Shelley and is about to fall down) is obviously stuffed. In the next shot on the ground, it's a living bird. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: At exactly 3:45 on that Saturday afternoon in the last week of September, Marvin Unger was, perhaps, the only one among the hundred thousand people at the track who felt no thrill at the running of the fifth race. He was totally disinterested in horse racing and held a lifelong contempt for gambling. Nevertheless, he had a $5 win bet on every horse in the fifth race. He knew, of course, that this rather unique system of betting would more than likely result in a loss, but he didn't...
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Connections

Referenced in Silent Rain in the Ninth (1999) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Kubrick-Noir: recommended
16 July 2004 | by See all my reviews

Everything about this movie fascinates me. Even the unexpected ending has a compelling and unique flavor to it. Sure, it looks like many crime dramas of the 50's. But we are talking about of a movie with a director of the prodigious talents of Stanley Kubrick.

Sometimes you wonder which genre Kubrick could not have handled brilliantly. He seems to know exactly what to do in such a wide variety of movies...Crime, Drama, War, Surreal, Historical Epic, Science Fiction and Black Comedy. My only wish would have been if Kubrick could have made MORE movies. When he died, that left only Woody Allen as the only major director who is working as a pure artist in the film medium.

THE KILLING is filled with crime-noir touches that form an absorbing whole that is hard to beat. The acting is top-notch, the scenes are set in gold taking from every crime movie and creating a whole that could not have been done so well by just any director - perhaps only Hitchcock could have pulled this off. Then there's the jazzy score that underlines the action which punch and atmosphere that just curdles off the screen.

Even if you're not a Kubrick fan (which might surprise many people when they find out he was the director) you will enjoy this movie.

Right to the end...which I won't reveal...but has an inevitability written with classical balance and a submission to fate that leaves a wry smile on your face.

Sterling Hayden is great in this role and he populates this character with just the right sort of mystery to keep you guessing until the end.

Recommended without reservation.


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