THE KILLING (1956) B/W 83m dir: Stanley Kubrick
w/Sterling Hayden, Colleen Gray, Vince Edwards, Jay C Flippen, Marie Windsor, Ted de Corsia, Elisha Cook Jr., Joe Sawyer, Timothy Carey, Jay Adler
Crooks plan a daring racetrack robbery.
From The Movie Guide: "Hardboiled early Kubrick. This lean, mean genre film is similar in mood and structure to John Huston's earlier THE ASPHALT JUNGLE, but many of Kubrick's characteristic obsessions are already firmly in place: fatally flawed humans, complicated interlocking timetables and meticulous plans gone awry. ...
"THE KILLING brought Kubrick to the attention of the industry as a major directorial talent even though this film was produced on a small budget of $320,000 --- and it shows. The sets are like cardboard but Kubrick emphasizes that fact, showing partitions, devising every conceivable angle from which to shoot, so that the space in which his actors move appears as it really is, confining, cramped, and claustrophobic, reflecting the attitudes of his characters. The film's semi-documentary feel is only enhanced by its meticulous intersecting flashback structure. Time becomes a palpable presence in this fatalistic film.
"Hayden gives a stoical top drawer performance as the nominal leader of this unprofessional gang of thieves. Cook gives one of the best performances of his career as the henpecked little man who suffers an avalanche of insults from his wretched wife, Windsor, whose own performance is spectacular."