A Kiss Before Dying
Time Out saysWriter/director Dearden's version of Ira Levin's novel is routine stuff, neither thrilling nor revealing as a portrait of a psychopath. Jonathan Corliss (Dillon) comes from the wrong side of the tracks and dreams of being tycoon Thor Carlsson (von Sydow). Getting that status means marrying into the family, but the first daughter (Young) gets inconveniently pregnant, so he courts and marries the second (also Young). But the fly in the ointment is her obsession with investigating her sister's death. There's an untidiness about the film that suggests something else was intended. Why those fierce opening shots of the copper furnace if we are to be denied Levin's final Götterdämmerung? Dillon does his best; Young doesn't seem equipped to do a lot with a woman who discovers she's nurtured a viper at her bosom; Ladd brings pathos to the role of the killer's mother.