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Kiss Me Deadly Details

FULL SYNOPSIS

Regarded by many critics as the ultimate film noir, and by many more as the finest movie adaptation of a book by Mickey Spillane, Kiss Me Deadly stars Ralph Meeker as Spillane's anti-social private eye Mike Hammer. While driving down a lonely road late one evening, Hammer picks up a beautiful blonde hitchhiker (Cloris Leachman), dressed in nothing but a raincoat. At first, Hammer assumes that the incoherent girl is an escaped lunatic; his mind is changed for him when he and the girl are abducted by two thugs. The men torture the girl to death as the semiconscious Hammer watches helplessly. He himself escapes extermination when the murderers' car topples off a cliff and he is thrown clear. Seeking vengeance, Hammer tries to discover the secret behind the girl's murder. Among those who cross his path in the film's tense, tingling 105 minutes are a slimy gangster (Paul Stewart), a turncoat scientist (Albert Dekker), and the dead woman's sexy roommate (Gaby Rodgers). All clues lead to a mysterious box -- the "Great Whatsit," as Hammer's secretary Velda (Maxine Cooper) describes it. Both the box and Velda are stolen by the villains, at which point Hammer discovers that the "Whatsit" contains radioactive material of awesome powers. The apocalyptic climax is doubly devastating because we're never quite certain if Hammer survives (he doesn't narrate the story, as was the case in most Mike Hammer films and TV shows). Director Robert Aldrich and scriptwriter Jack Moffit transcend Kiss Me Deadly's basic genre trappings to produce a one-of-a-kind melodrama for the nuclear age. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

  • Release date:May 18, 1955

Cast

Ralph Meeker
as Mike Hammer
Albert Dekker
as Dr. Soberin
Paul Stewart
as Carl Evello
Wesley Addy
as Pat Chambers
Cloris Leachman
as Christina Bailey, a.k.a. Berga Torn
Jack Elam
as Charlie Max
Juano Hernandez
as Eddie Yeager
Gaby Rodgers
as Lily Carver, a.k.a. Gabrielle
Jack Lambert
as Sugar Smallhouse
Marian Carr
as Friday
Jerry Zinneman
as Sammy
Leigh Snowden
as Girl at Evello's Pool
Percy Helton
as Morgue Doctor
Madi Comfort
as Singer
Fortunio Bonanova
as Carmen Trivago
James McCallion
as Super
Silvio Minciotti
as Mover
Robert Cornthwaite
as F.B.I. Man
James Seay
as F.B.I. Man
Mara McAfee
as Nurse
Mort Marshall
as Piker
Jesslyn Fax
as Mrs. Super
Strother Martin
as Harvey Wallace, Truck Driver
Kitty White
as Vocalist in Club (uncredited)
Leonard Mudie
as Athletic Club Clerk
Sam Balter
as Radio announcer
Bob Sherman
as Gas Station Man
Marjorie Bennett
as Manager

Crew

Robert Aldrich
Director
Robert Aldrich
Producer
Ernest Laszlo
Cinematographer
Frank De Vol
Composer (Music Score)
Frank De Vol
Songwriter
Michael Luciano
Editor
William Glasgow
Art Director
Victor Saville
Executive Producer
Howard Bristol
Set Designer
Jack Solomon
Sound/Sound Designer
Bob Schiffer
Makeup
Frank De Vol
Conductor
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