HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Perfect 10
Octaman
Red Penguins
China Syndrome, The
Babyteeth
Round-Up, The
Around the Sun
Once There Was Brasilia
Peripheral
Dead Pigeon on Beethoven Street
Ice
She Demons
Good Girls, The
Hail, Hero!
Faces in the Crowd
Tamango
Traitor, The
Tomorrow
Third Generation, The
Saxon Charm, The
Spy Intervention
Moonrise
Mulan
Killer with a Thousand Eyes, The
Vigil, The
Liberation of L.B. Jones, The
Wizard of Baghdad, The
Ride
Good Manners
Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo
Sweet Home
Big Score, The
Siddhartha
Three Outlaw Samurai
Echoes of Fear
Guinea Pig, The
Truth, The
Good Die Young, The
Old Guard, The
Gumnaam
   
 
Newest Articles
Eve Knew Her Apples: The Lady Eve on Blu-ray
Network On Air: Tempo - Gallery One
Network On Air: Nights In with ABC 1 - Welcome Once Again to Manchester!
Transformative Apocalypses: Phase IV and Southland Tales
The Happiest Days of Their Lives: The Guinea Pig on Blu-ray
Faced Poe: Three Edgar Allan Poe Adaptations Starring Bela Lugosi on Blu-ray
Hard Luck, Buster: The Cameraman on Blu-ray
At the Hop: Mr. Vampire on Blu-ray
Divine Madness: Female Trouble on Blu-ray
Country Matters: Further Out of Town on Blu-ray
Bat-Damn: Was Joel Schumacher's Batman Really That Bad?
The Beat Goes On: Takeshi Kitano Collection on Blu-ray
Dream Treats: Scorsese Shorts on Blu-ray
It's Only Money: Laughter in Paradise on Blu-ray
A Regular Terpsichore: Dance, Girl, Dance on Blu-ray
Teenage Trauma: Baby Love on Blu-ray
The Happening: Pet Shop Boys It Couldn't Happen Here on Blu-ray
Who Watched The Watchmen?
The Golden Age of Colonic Irrigation: Monty Python Series 4 on Blu-ray
Lady of Pleasure: Lola Montes on Blu-ray
Take You to the Gay Bar: Funeral Parade of Roses on Blu-ray
Hit for Ms: Mark Cousins' Women Make Film on Blu-ray
Look Sinister: The 1000 Eyes of Dr. Mabuse on Blu-ray
Star Wars Triple Threat: The Tricky Third Prequel and Sequel
I Can See for Miles: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes on Blu-ray
   
 
  Nightkill Fallen Angel
Year: 1980
Director: Ted Post
Stars: Robert Mitchum, Jaclyn Smith, James Franciscus, Mike Connors, Fritz Weaver, Sybil Danning, Tina Menard, Belinda Mayne, Angus Scrimm, Michael Anderson Jr., Melanie McQueen
Genre: ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  4 (from 1 vote)
Review: Adulterous lovers Kathy Atwell (Jaclyn Smith) and Steve Fuller (James Franciscus) share a steamy shower room clinch, while unbeknownst to them a tape-recorder hidden somewhere in the house eavesdrops on their every word. Kathy is unhappily married to Wendell Atwell (Mike Connors), a business tycoon in Phoenix, Arizona who seemingly can’t go five minutes without heaping abuse upon the poor woman. However, her beauty and popularity earned through charitable work with local orphans makes Kathy his prized possession, so divorce is out of the question. To Kathy’s horror, Steve poisons Wendell then convinces her to stash the body in her freezer. His plan is to pick up a briefcase with $1 million dollars in dirty money that Wendell stashed in an airport locker, whereupon he and Kathy will flee the country. The next morning Kathy awakens to discover Wendell’s body has vanished while another corpse lies in its place. Then suspicious cop Lt. Donner (Robert Mitchum) starts snooping around.

Often misleadingly tagged a horror film (since early days when posters featured a naked Jaclyn Smith menaced in the shower, to its most recent release as an unlikely “former video nasty” from schlock merchants VIPCO), Nightkill was intended to be a breakout vehicle for the beautiful Charlie’s Angels star but wound up going straight to television. Smith - who initially tested the waters with some fun exploitation TV movies, notably Escape from Bogen County (1977) - never joined the big leagues but did become queen of the mini-series, from which this tepid thriller is fairly indistinguishable. One wonders whether the Coen Brothers ever saw Nightkill given how it shares a few plot elements in common with their infinitely superior Blood Simple (1983), but stands as a textbook example of how not to do this kind of thriller right.

It clearly wants to update The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946) by way of Les Diaboliques (1955) but the shapeless script by writers Joan Andre and John Case fumbles every twist, piling one after another till this winds up a convoluted mess. The conclusion seems obvious in hindsight but remains frustratingly vague. More problematically, given Kathy is no murderous femme fatale but an essentially decent, downtrodden victim, the plot proves something of a demoralizing sequence, especially the nasty denouement that involves a scalding hot shower and seems unnecessarily harsh. Though Jaclyn Smith seems ill at ease, her mannerisms seem appropriate to the material and she engenders sympathy for her harried heroine.

By unfortunate contrast, Robert Mitchum sleepwalks through his pivotal role as Lt. Donner, bringing none of the menace of his famous film noir roles. Of the supporting cast: B-movie queen Sybil Danning is wasted as a socialite, Fritz Weaver over-acts as Kathy’s lecherous lawyer who can’t stop slobbering over her, and James Franciscus barely registers. Mike Connors, star of Mannix the long-running Seventies detective show, is amusingly cast against type as a bullying cowboy tycoon who sells biological weapons, bullies his Mexican servants, berates Kathy for her charity work, and keeps caged monkeys in his living room whom he goads into fighting each other. Presumably, he also enjoys punching old ladies and kicking puppies. His resemblance to J.R. Ewing from then-popular TV soap Dallas was surely intentional.

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam

 

This review has been viewed 4792 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Ted Post  (1918 - 2013)

American television director who made a few films, mostly in the 1970s. They include Hang 'em High, Beneath the Planet of the Apes, Magnum Force, trash favourite The Baby, The Harrad Experiment, Go Tell The Spartans and Good Guys Wear Black.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
Andrew Pragasam
  Lee Fiveash
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
   

 

Last Updated: