This listing is for Kiss Or Kill VHS Video Tape Australian Thriller.
Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Original recording reissued, NTSC
Rated: R - Restricted
Number of tapes: 1
Studio: Universal Studios Home Video
VHS Release Date: November 2, 1999
Run Time: 97 minutes
Kiss Or Kill kept me on the edge of my seat for nearly two hours. Young lovers Nikki and Al are petty scam artists. Nikki picks up wealthy business men in bars, takes then back to their hotel room, then drugs them to sleep. Al arrives, and the two are off with the booty. Only something goes wrong this time, and the perp goes to sleep never to wake again. There stolen treasure, and their demise, is a homemade chicken video featuring a famous and wealthy ex-footballer (soccer player) named Zipper Doyle. Robbery is a messy business, but blackmail would be much more clean and profitable.
Nikki and Al escape across the Australian outback pursued by the police and Zipper. During their travels, the people they meet end up dead. Not unusual for a road adventure, except that the viewer doesn't witness the murders. Al is prone to violent outbursts, where Nikki is shaken by the string of murders. Nikki's character is the more complex and elusive. She witnessed a horrifying act as a child, and she also sleep walks. Much like the relationship of a conventional couple, Nikki and Al surmount mistrust, selfishness, greed and loathing; their trials are on the road (surrounded by corpses), not at home. Their love is always precariously balanced between bliss and self-destruction. And in the end, their love is triumphant.
Most interesting about Kiss Or Kill is the supernatural aura of the outback. Only Nikki feels its magnetism. Writer-director Bill Bennett is an excellent storyteller: revealing just enough to satisfy the viewer's appetite, but always keeping some of the storyline secret to hold the viewer's attention. He loves jump shoots. The effect is unsettling, just as intended. He also shoots the lovers from different angles. Back and forth between the two: profile, side, back. We can't tell if they're siting or standing, moving or still. Very disorienting. We've kept guessing as to exactly what the couple are doing. So are the police, so is Zipper Doyle, and so are the other characters in the film. Nikki and Al are on a trip with no destination. The only thing that we are certain of (and proven wrong) is that they will not be successful.
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