Saturday, November 17, 2012

The Killing Kind

The Killing Kind(Are You A Good Boy?) Directed by Curtis Harrington starring John Savage (1973)
I’ve always found John Savage, the actor who plays Terry Lambert to have a hidden level of psychotic tension before I saw him play a killer. Some of my favorites roles are The Onion Field where he plays a mentally shattered cop who witnesses Ted Danson getting shot in the face and it turns him into a kleptomaniac. In Inside Moves which is set in San Francisco, he plays a pathetic suicidal vet who can barely keep together different awkward relationships and contain his jealous rage against what little others surrounding him have. Sometimes I get him confused with John Heard who seems to be doing an impression of him in Cutters Way with Jeff Bridges. 

     This role may have been a springboard for later creepy roles, because he is incredibly effective as a reluctant gang rape participant. The Killing Kind opens with this rape flashback that continues to drive him to assault women. All his problems stem from his domineering mother and the forced gang rape. A pre-Laverne & Shirley Cindy Williams plays one of his victims who gets drowned in a bathtub. Ruth Roman (from The Baby) dies a hilarious death as Savage forces her to drink all night until she can’t move. The director Curtis Harrington has made a few turkeys in his time like Ruby (which I’ve attempted to watch 3 times and failed), Games and The Killer Bees. This drive in staple was often pared with the Arch Hall Junior opus The Sadist. As Harrington, I did really like Devil Dog: Hound of Hell and The Killing Kind has that sleazy 70’s tv movie feel sort of in the same vein as The Toolbox Murders (but less graphic). Dark Sky has since released a restored version on DVD but you can also watch it on Youtube. Check it out!


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