The Killer

Director: John Woo
Screenwriters: John Woo

Institute History

  • 1990 Sundance Film Festival


"Miami Vice" on speed. Sergio Leone meets Sam Fuller meets Kurosawa meets Sam Peckinpah meets Edgar Ulmer. A film concocted with nitroglycerin, which has the combined energy of The Rood Warrior, RoboCop, and The Terminator. All the antihero icons and energy from the dark side of American films compressed into a one-hundred-minute feature, yet so schizophrenic that Disney is an influence.

The result is The Killer, a devastatingly kinetic gangster melodrama, crazy with violence, muted romance, bizarre humor and implicit homoeroticism. The setting is Hong Kong, a world changing so fast that life is cheap, honor gets you killed, and the future holds no justice. Starring the Dirty Harry of Hong Kong, Chow Yun-Fat, The Killer plays by its own rules.

While the "Hong Kong gangster films" delighted even the most exacting cineastes, leaving them shell-shocked and breathless, The Killer exceeds all precedents.

Monday, January 22, 7:00 p.m.
Prospector Square Theatre

Thursday, January 25, 10:00 p.m.
Egyptian Theatre


— Alberto Garcia, Tony Safford

Screening Details

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