08/02/2015  
1931 The Front Page on Blu-ray & DVD Aug 11Madama Bovary on DVD & Blu-ray Aug 4Rookie Blue: Season Five, Volume One on DVD Aug 18The Erotic Rites of Frankenstein on Blu-ray & DVD Jul 28The Blacklist: The Complete Second Season on Blu-ray & DVD Aug. 18What We Do in the Shadows on Blu-ray & DVD Jul 21Goodbye to All That on DVD Jul 14

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

1931 The Front Page on Blu-ray & DVD Aug 11...
Betty White Heartbroken Over Cecil the Lion's Killing a...
Italy town petitions for Foo Fighters concert with band...
EXCLUSIVE: Valerie Harper Rushed to Hospital, 'It Doesn...
'Mission: Impossible -- Rogue Nation' is breakneck, bre...
Ted Cruz backs out of scheduled 'Daily Show' appearance...
'Ant-Man' inches past 'Pixels' to take No. 1 spot at bo...
Jake Gyllenhaal's Evolution of Hotness, From Bubble Boy...
Judd Apatow: Bill Cosby "One of the Most Awful People t...
Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert Split 10 Years After ...



Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

MGM Studios DVD presents
Kill Me Again (1989)

Fay Forrester: "I always wondered what it would be like to die a really violent death."
Jack Andrews: "Well now you know."



Review By: Dan Heaton   
Published: December 16, 2000

Stars: Val Kilmer, Joanne Whalley-Kilmer
Other Stars: Michael Madsen, Jonathan Gries
Director: John Dahl

Manufacturer: Wamo
MPAA Rating: R
Run Time: 1h:34m:27s
Release Date: December 19, 2000
UPC: 027616855589
Genre: film noir


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B- CCB- D

DVD Review

The scene is familiar. A mysterious female visitor enters the office of a worn-down private investigator. She flaunts her beauty and shows a lot without revealing too much of herself. Her story contains numerous lies, but has just enough truth to keep the investigator interested. While he listens to her sketchy and unbelievable tale, it is obvious that this girl is setting him up for a violent downfall. But he decides to help her anyway. The trap is set.

In the modern film noir Kill Me Again, Jack Andrews (Val Kilmer) has hit the ultimate bottom of life. His wife died in a car accident several years ago, and it sent him into a downward spiral. Now, he is broke and works in a failing job as a private investigator. He owes the mob $10,000, and they've already broken one of his fingers as a warning. When knockout Fay Forrester (Joanne Whalley-Kilmer) enters his office, Jack is searching for a lifeboat. Instead, he becomes involved in a twisted scheme that leads him into a series of deadly encounters.

I enjoyed watching the ways Fay uses her physical charms to swindle the money away from the men in her life. Vince Miller (Michael Madsen), her psychopathic boyfriend, falls into the trap of underestimating her headstrong will. When Fay asks Jack to help her fake her death, he begins hesitantly, but soon starts to enjoy this cat-and-mouse game. Unfortunately, even though he realizes that she is using him, Jack still falls in love with her. Thus lies the downfall of the film noir "everyman." He believes that once they get away, this vibrant girl will settle down with him in Maine. Unfortunately, as numerous film noir protagonists have learned, the femme fatale will use them and then lose them.

Joanne Whalley-Kilmer does a wonderful job expressing the sensuality and allure of a woman obviously incapable of real love. She makes no real qualms about it, and only needs to use her eyes to draw men into her web. Val Kilmer performs decently as the straight man in over his head. Even his character's name is boring and a typical American name. Michael Madsen gives his usual over-the-top performance as the criminal with a knack for brutal violence. His gruesome interrogation of Jack's friend Alan (Jon Gries) is a precursor to his infamous nasty scene in Reservoir Dogs. Madsen is known for this type of role, and displays his usual mix of energy and menace.

Director John Dahl (Red Rock West, The Last Seduction) obviously has a great deal of admiration for the film noir genre and its classic films. Kill Me Again takes plenty of its story and action from the old staples and more recent movies such as Chinatown and Body Heat. Dahl inserts some modern touches into the mix, but the basic structure remains the same. Unfortunately, this story lacks enough originality to distinguish it from the mold. The actors do a solid job, but the characters lack the extra flair necessary to keep the story interesting amidst the workings of the plot. Also, the twists become too predictable, especially in the final supposedly shocking surprise.

In 1974, Chinatown invigorated filmgoers with its gritty storyline, fascinating characters, and violent tension. It took the conventions of the film noir genre and turned them on their head for a remarkable result. Kill Me Again does none of these things. This makes the story fairly dull and an imitator instead of an originator. The actors give it their best shot, and the atmosphere generates a few chilling moments, but the story lacks innovation. It provides entertainment for a while, but falters and begins to grow tedious as the film progresses.

Rating for Style: B-
Rating for Substance: C

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Rationo
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: Widescreen transfers are becoming fairly standard issue for DVD releases these days, and this makes the absence of one on this disc more frustrating. I don't mind when studios give viewers the option of choosing either a widescreen or full-screen version on a two-sided disc. Kill Me Again relies heavily on its atmosphere and mood, and this suffers when the picture is cropped.

The overall transfer on this disc is mediocre, with no major drawbacks or positives. A significant amount of defects exist, including some graininess and muted colors. However, the outdoor scenes remain fairly bright and clear, with well-defined images in the foreground and background.

Image Transfer Grade: C

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0English, Frenchyes


Audio Transfer Review: The 2.0-channel Dolby soundtrack for Kill Me Again functions well to convey the sordid mood and tension involved in Jack's actions. The score does its best to keep the film moving and retain the mystery that is inherent in the story. While the sounds failed to move remarkably well from left to right, the end results are clear and efficient. Considering the limits of two channels, this is a decent audio transfer, with no obvious drawbacks.

Audio Transfer Grade: B-

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 24 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in French, Spanish with remote access
1 Original Trailer(s)
Packaging: Alpha
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: While I did not expect much from this fairly obscure MGM catalog title, the lack of any noteworthy extras still irks me. Even a short section of production notes or cast information would have helped.

This disc does contain the original theatrical trailer in the full-screen form. It succeeds in generating interest for the film without giving away the entire plot. The tone of the preview is eerie and conveys the dark, shady nature of the story. Overall, the lack of extras, combined with the full-screen transfer, shows MGM's minimal interest in promoting this film on DVD.

Extras Grade: D

 

Final Comments

Kill Me Again attempts to recapture the essence of film noir classics such as Out of the Past or Double Indemnity. On the surface, it succeeds with a gloomy tone, mysterious immoral characters, and a luscious femme fatale. However, it lacks the liveliness or inventiveness of the past masterpieces and eventually becomes a subpar imitation. Director John Dahl does begin to convey the promise that he would fulfill with his next film, the impressive Red Rock West.

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 



Microsoft Store

Keywords

comedy, classic, music, foo fighters, learn to fly, fabio zaffagnini, celebrity, betty white, walt palmer, cecil the lion, mia farrow, jimmy kimmel, valerie harper, nice work if you can get it, ogunquit playhouse, mary tyler moore show, movie, mission: impossible -- rogue nation, tom cruise, simon pegg, ving rhames, jeremy remmer, alec baldwin, television, late night, jon stewart, ted cruz, david mccullough, ant-man, disney, marvel, pixels, adam sandler, jurassic, inside out, minions, trainwreck, southpaw, jake gyllenhaal, october sky, donnie darko, bubbly boy, brokeback mountain, prisoners, jeff apatow, cnn, new day, bill cosby, blake shelton miranda lambert, you are the reason god make oklahoma, gunpowder and lead, drama, payton reed, paul rudd, michael douglas, corey stoll, evangeline lily, horror, tom selleck, calleguas municipal water district, movies, star wars, harrison ford, dead pool, ryan reynolds, muppets, batman v superman, ben affleck, westworld, hbo, j.j. abrams, the gallows, cassidy gifford, kathie lee gifford, frank gifford, amy schumer, judd apatow, bill hader, inside amy schumer, ariana grande, dough-nut licking video, wolfee donuts, netflix, wet hot american summer: first day of camp, michael showalter, david wain, elizabeth banks, michael ian black, bradley cooper, judah friedlander, janeane garofalo, joe lo truglio, ken marino, christopher meloni, marguerite moreau, zak orth, amy poehler, david hyde pierce, molly shannon, sci-fy, star trek, justin lin, star trek beyond, zoe soldana, chris pine, donald trump, republican presidential candidate, nbc, televisa, ora tv, lupita jones, carlos slim, larry king, sex-assault lawsuit, associated press, george m. gowen iii, disneyland, disney california adventure, selfie sticks banned, california screaming, coachella, lollapalooza, jimmy fallon, tonight show, hand injury, x files, david duchovny, gillian anderson, fox, january 24, 2016, apple music, allen kovac, motley crue, taylor swift, elvis costello, calvin harris

On Kindle!
On Facbook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too

Visit:

Zarabesque.com

Original Magic Dress.com

Susti Heaven

Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact
Microsoft Store