The Kill-Off

The Kill-Off is a rigorous, well-acted adaptation of a hardboiled novel by Jim Thompson, with an unrelentingly grim view of human nature.

With:
Loretta Gross Andrew Lee Barrett Jackson Sims Steve Monroe Cathy Haase William Russell

The Kill-Off is a rigorous, well-acted adaptation of a hardboiled novel by Jim Thompson, with an unrelentingly grim view of human nature.

Loretta Gross gives a strong performance as Luane DeVore, an acid-tongued gossipmonger hated by almost everyone in her little community. She feigns a bedridden, feeble condition so that her husband (Steve Monroe), 20 years her junior, will take care of her hand and foot.

Things come to a head when folks decide to get rid of her, including Monroe, a slow-witted fellow whose new girlfriend (Cathy Haase) plots against his wife. Gross’ death is followed by some bitter confrontations and a nihilistic finish.

Ensemble acting brings out the bitterness and hopelessness of a ragtag group of trapped characters. It’s not a pretty picture, but helmer Maggie Greenwald keeps tight control of mood and tone.

The Kill-Off

Production: Filmworld. Director Maggie Greenwald; Producer Lydia Dean Pilcher; Screenplay Maggie Greenwald; Camera Declan Quinn; Editor James Y. Kwei; Music Evan Lurie; Art Director Pamela Woodbridge

Crew: (Color) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1989. Running time: 95 MIN.

With: Loretta Gross Andrew Lee Barrett Jackson Sims Steve Monroe Cathy Haase William Russell

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