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Author Topic: In Cold Blood (1967)  (Read 1041 times)
emmo26
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« on: June 07, 2012, 04:33:26 AM »

Apologies  in advance if this thread has already been done...Could  not find it in search.

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After a botched robbery results in the brutal murder of a rural family, two drifters elude police, in the end coming to terms with their own mortality and the repercussions of their vile atrocity.


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I saw this the other day, Scott Wilson reminded me very much of a cross between Dennis Hopper and Michael Madsen

Other things I noted was the "Nature born killer" line, the camera shot from the boot (very QT)

and the middle finger salute....was this the first film to do this???

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drinkanddestroy
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« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2012, 05:27:37 PM »

one of the all-time greatest movies about crime/criminals on the run. Maybe it could have been perfect if they had someone better in Scott Wilson's role, but it's still a 9/10  Afro Afro

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« Reply #2 on: November 20, 2016, 05:55:59 AM »

In Cold Blood (1967) A Noir/Neo Noir Masterpiece



You'll know it when you see it. Just like you know a Noir when you see it. In Cold Blood is a Masterpiece and it's a Masterpiece of Film Noir, to boot, no doubt about it. It was made right at the end of Black & White film production and that format, along with the Classic Noir look/aesthetic couldn't have gone out with a bigger or more powerful bang.

Masterfully directed by Richard Brooks (Deadline - U.S.A. (1952), Blackboard Jungle (1955), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958), Elmer Gantry (1960), Looking for Mr. Goodbar (1977)). Written by Richard Brooks who's previous credits include (The Killers (1946), Brute Force (1947), Crossfire (1947), Key Largo (1948), Mystery Street (1950), Storm Warning (1951), Deadline - U.S.A. (1952), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958), Elmer Gantry (1960)) and based on Truman Capote's book "In Cold Blood"

The incredibly crisp and strikingly artistic cinematography was by Conrad L. Hall (The Outer Limits  TV Series (1963–1965), Harper (1966), Cool Hand Luke (1967), Black Widow (1987)). Editing was by Peter Zinner (The Professionals (1966), The Godfather (1972), The Godfather: Part II (1974)). The film also has an excellent score by Quincy Jones (The Pawnbroker (1964), In the Heat of the Night (1967), The Getaway (1972)).







In Cold Blood stars Robert Blake (The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948), Black Hand (1950), Naked City TV Series (1958–1963), Electra Glide in Blue (1973), Lost Highway (1997)) as greaser Perry Smith. Scott Wilson (In the Heat of the Night (1967), ) as farm boy Dick Hickock.

The film has a plethora of Classic Film Noir veterans, John Forsythe (The Captive City (1952), The Glass Web (1953), ) as Alvin Dewey the lead investigator for the Kansas Bureau of Investigation (KBI). Paul Stewart (Johnny Eager (1941), Champion (1949), The Window (1949), Edge of Doom (1950), Appointment with Danger (1951), Deadline - U.S.A. (1952), Loan Shark (1952)) as Jensen, the reporter. Gerald S. O'Loughlin (Cop Hater (1958)) as Harold Nye KBI. Jeff Corey (Somewhere in the Night (1946), The Killers (1946), Brute Force (1947), The Gangster (1947), Scene of the Crime (1949), Once a Thief (1965)) as Dick's father, Charles. Charles McGraw (ten Classic Noir under his belt) as Perry's father Tex. Vaughn Taylor (The Lineup (1958), Screaming Mimi (1958), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958), Party Girl (1958), Psycho (1960)) as the Good Samaritan. James Flavin (High Sierra (1941), Laura (1944), Mildred Pierce (1945), The Spider (1945), The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (1946), Nora Prentiss (1947), Nightmare Alley (1947), Armored Car Robbery (1950), The Naked Street (1955) ) as Clarence Duntz KBI. Will Geer (Johnny Allegro (1949), The Tall Target (1951), Seconds (1966)) as Prosecuting attorney. Jim Lantz as Officer Rohleder, John McLiam as Herbert Clutter, Paul Hough as Kenyon Clutter, Ruth Storey as Bonnie Clutter, Brenda C. Currin as Nancy Clutter, Donald Sollars as Clothing Salesman and John Gallaudet as Roy Church fill out the rest of the cast.

In Cold Blood is both intensely horrific and starkly beautiful at the same time. The incredibly random violence visited upon a Kansas family triggered by an off hand remark to Dick Hickok from a prison cell mate, should send shivers down your spine. The film is an electrifying reenactment (in the actual locations) of the brutal murder of the Clutter Family near the town of Holcomb, Kansas on November 14, 1959, the subsequent six week flight of Perry Smith and Dick Hickock to Mexico, and their final track down by law enforcement in Las Vegas.























continued.....

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« Reply #3 on: November 20, 2016, 05:56:24 AM »

continuing....

The film is stylistically nonlinear in format and there are multiple time jumps and flashbacks to Perry's and Dick's past, giving you quasi insights as to the why. There are occasional daydreams and escapist sunken pirate treasure fantasies that sometimes just add to the mystery and other times add to the explanation of what tipped the incident into brutal hideous murder in cold blood.





An interesting take away from the film is that neither Perry or Dick by themselves singly would have committed the murders, but together they formed a third sort of super personality that fed off the weaknesses of both of them and canceled any inhibitions they may have had.

It's not until the trip with the two fugitives back towards Holcomb do we get to hear Perry's confession with a flashback that reconstructs the fatal events of the night. What we don't see is actually far more suggestively appalling in Brook's skilled direction. The isolated farmhouse. A howling prairie wind. A foreboding interior darkness stabbed crazily about by erratic flashlight beams. Pleas for mercy cut off by gun blasts. Muzzle flash, juxtaposed with eerie silences. The actual massacre of innocents is solely in your imagination.

Perry Smith: It doesn't make sense. I mean what happened. It had nothing to do with the Clutters. They never hurt me. They just happened to be there. I thought Mr. Clutter was a very nice gentleman... I thought so right up to the time I cut his throat.

The film takes you along with the marauders on their getaway in their 1949 Pontiac Chieftain, excellently weaving their backstories with the various objects, encounters, and incidents that trigger the aforementioned revealing flashbacks. It's almost jarring upon reflection in the way that we get to know, and on some level, even feel some sympathy for the killers. Traditional Hollywood would have either painted these two murderers all in basic black or glamorized them, but Brooks shows us that despite their having no moral compass, there is still some modicum of humanity even in these two deplorables.







I can't emphasize enough the powerful performances of Robert Blake and Scott Wilson, they make these two sleazeballs BONAFIDE. Combined that with the vivid realism of the direction, the artistry of the cinematography, and the score from Quincey Jones and you have a film for the ages. This is undoubtedly Robert Blake's best performance, and I was also deeply impressed with the supporting work of Charles McGraw as Perry's grizzled, broken down and out, cowboy father Tex, living in what looks like the back of derelict box truck, outfitted with a bed pallet, a hot plate, wrangler gear, festooned with rodeo posters, horse blankets, and lit by kerosene lanterns, setting in a auto junk yard.









The film was nominated for four Academy Awards: Director, Original Score, Cinematography, and Adapted Screenplay. It should have nominated Blake and McGraw also, and it should have won all of them. Screencaps are from the Columbia Pictures DVD 2003. It's chilling 10/10.

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« Reply #4 on: November 20, 2016, 08:41:46 AM »

Great movie, great review by CJ  Afro Afro

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« Reply #5 on: November 20, 2016, 11:19:06 AM »

Bah, I found the movie a bit boring and the novel too long.

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« Reply #6 on: November 20, 2016, 04:40:29 PM »

Only thing I did not like very much: Scott Wilson. Otherwise a great movie.

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« Reply #7 on: November 28, 2016, 10:11:14 AM »

I will give this a go one of these days I hope. Afro

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« Reply #8 on: June 21, 2017, 07:13:47 PM »

From The Wichita Eagle: A 2,300 word article, and video interview, with the prosecutor in the "In Cold Blood" case. He never read the book. He calls it "garbage."

http://www.kansas.com/news/local/crime/article155205179.html

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« Reply #9 on: June 21, 2017, 08:53:26 PM »

I liked the story about going to NYC where Capote got them tickets to Hello, Dolly and made it possible for them to meet Carol Channing.  Grin

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« Reply #10 on: June 22, 2017, 04:51:29 AM »

Nice read thanks.

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« Reply #11 on: July 19, 2017, 02:40:39 AM »

That article got me in the mood of seeing the movie again, so I rented the BRD from Netflix a little while ago. Terrific movie, 9/10. This time around, Scott Wilson didn't bother me. I didn't like him the first time I saw the movie, but now I think he was fine.

Funny thing: Whoever rented the Netflix BRD before me had a (macabre) sense of humor: The white disc sleeve was full of blood splotches! (Yeah, I know it sounds gross, but I appreciated the joke too much to be grossed out!)  Grin

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