Born to Kill DVD
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Directed by Robert Wise
Produced in 1947
Main Language - English
Countries & Regions - American film
A hard-bitten film noir that is truly deserving of the name, Born to Kill is filled with amoral people doing very bad things. It's filled with a miasma of corruption, writes James Oliver.
'Film noir' is a much abused term, a tag often erroneously attached to films that can't justify its tenebrous taint. But make no mistake: Born to Kill is the real thing, as noir as noir gets. For those with a taste for the hard stuff, it's essential.
Our leading man is the all-too-aptly named Sam Wild (Lawrence Tierney), a cold-eyed psycho prone to killing those who cross him. Fleeing town after an unfortunate double murder, he encounters Helen Brent (Claire Trevor), a cynical gold digger. Their initial connection slowly mutates into a twisted love affair and Sam leads Helen ever further into the dark.
Its lack of major stars means that Born to Kill is comparatively little known but this is one of the major film noirs. Even by the jaundiced standards of crime pictures of the era, it's a hard-bitten joint, filled with amoral people doing thoroughly bad things. Indeed, it's suffused with such a miasma of corruption, you have to wonder how its director, Robert Wise, could go on to make The Sound of Music.
James Oliver on 18th June 2012
Author of 146 reviews
Sam Wild (Lawrence Tierney) is a real lady-killer. He's irresistible to women - but has a murderous and uncontrollable temper. He's already killed twice, without conscience or remorse - and he's ready to kill again...
Helen Brent (Claire Trevor) already has her suspicions about Sam when he marries her vulnerable half-sister, heiress Georgia (Audrey Long). At the same time she's irresistibly drawn to his brutal animal magnetism. Should she turn him into the police - or seduce him and share in his vicious crimes?
Publisher: Odeon Entertainment
Length: 92 mins
Aspect ratio: 4:3
Cat No: ODNF246
Format: DVD B&W