Video Review

A Kiss Before Dying (1991)

MPAA Rating: R

Details Movie Rated: R; Genre: Mystery and Thriller; With: Matt Dillon and Sean Young; Distributor: Universal

Renter beware: This adaptation of the Ira Levin novel, in which a rich woman (Sean Young) marries her twin sister's murderer (Matt Dillon), is one shoddy piece of moviemaking. James Dearden, who wrote Fatal Attraction, is a klutzy director, and his dialogue for A Kiss Before Dying is leaden enough to sink mobsters into Lake Michigan. Ideally the viewer would need to feel fearful for Young, unwittingly in love with a psychopath who tries to cover up his deed with more murders, but she's such an awful actress that it's hard to drum up much sympathy. Wait for the taut and unsettling 1956 version starring Robert Wagner as the sweet-faced killer to show up on late-night television (it's not available on videocassette). D-

Originally posted Oct 04, 1991 Published in issue #86 Oct 04, 1991 Order article reprints

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