The Killing
Want to See
Not Interested
Rate it ½ star
Rate it 1 star
Rate it 1½ stars
Rate it 2 stars
Rate it 2½ stars
Rate it 3 stars
Rate it 3½ stars
Rate it 4 stars
Rate it 4½ stars
Rate it 5 stars
The Killing was director Stanley Kubrick's first major film effort -- though, like Kubrick's earlier films, it was economically produced with an inexpensive cast. In a variation of his Asphalt Jungle role, Sterling Hayden plays veteran criminal Johnny Clay, planning one last big heist before settling down to a respectable marriage with Fay (Colleen Gray). Teaming with several cohorts, Johnny masterminds a racetrack robbery. The basic flaw is that all the crooks involved are losers and small-timers who find themselves in way over their heads despite their supposed cleverness. None of… More

Available Online

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 97%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Faultless and enjoyable."
‑ David Thomson, The New Republic
"Arguably Stanley Kubrick's most perfectly conceived and executed film."
‑ Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
"One of the undisputed high-water marks of the American crime film whose reverberations can still be felt in a number of ways."
‑ Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy
"Despite this only being his third feature and his first with a significant budget, Kubrick displays many of the thematic preoccupations and visual traits that would come to define his unique, cinematic voice."
‑ James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk
"1956 and it's already Kubrick, being Kubrick."
‑ Dan Jardine, Cinemania
"At 27 Writer-Director Stanley Kubrick, in his third full-length picture, has shown more audacity with dialogue and camera than Hollywood has seen since the obstreperous Orson Welles went riding out of town on an exhibitors' poll."
‑ , TIME Magazine
"Characteristically Kubrick in both its mechanistic coldness and its vision of human endeavour undone by greed and deceit, this noir-ish heist movie is nevertheless far more satisfying than most of his later work."
‑ Geoff Andrew, Time Out
"Underneath The Killing's clockwork violence is a pungent layer of irony, something Kubrick would further explore many times later in his career."
‑ Glenn Heath Jr., Slant Magazine
"A tight heist thriller from master director Stanley Kubrick."
‑ Wesley Lovell, Cinema Sight
"Kubrick made grander and greater films, but this is among his most dramatic."
‑ , Film4
"[The film] at first tends to be somewhat confusing, soon settles into a tense and suspenseful vein which carries through to an unexpected and ironic windup."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"An engrossing little adventure."
‑ A.H. Weiler, New York Times
"A brisk, satisfying film noir that features all the details of a racetrack heist gone wrong - even if the timeline is all shuffled out of order. It's thick with atmosphere and razor-sharp dialogue."
‑ Eric Melin, Scene-Stealers.com
"May be the greatest of American heist films because it bursts the genre to the point of existentialism."
‑ Rob Gonsalves, eFilmCritic.com
"Even though he was just staring out, Kubrick instantly mastered the crime genre. A stunning film."
‑ Kim Newman, Empire Magazine
More reviews for The Killing on Rotten Tomatoes

More Like This

L.A. Confidential
99%