The Kiss

  • Film
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Densham's daft and derivative 'possession' pic (his debut) starts in the Belgian Congo, with a sickly child miraculously revived when her aunt kisses her passionately, passing on an invigorating power before herself expiring. Some years later in America, soon after child-woman Salenger's religious confirmation, her mysterious aunt (Pacula) materialises at a family funeral. With the help of a blood-dripping African talisman and a bright-eyed black cat, Pacula seduces Salenger's father and incites much psychic chaos. The film soon degenerates into screeching incoherence, and - crucially - fails to explore the erotic undercurrents hinted at by Salenger's burgeoning sexuality and her aunt's corrupting desire. Salenger's tearful teen is too pathetic to elicit either sympathy or interest, Pacula hams it up as the demonic aunt, and Mimi Kuzyk provides the only shred of credible humanity as a sympathetic neighbour. Chris (The Fly) Walas' special effects are often more eye-catching than the inane plot deserves.

Release details

Duration: 101 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Pen Densham
Screenwriter: Stephen Volk, Tom Ropelewski
Cast: Joanna Pacula
Meredith Salenger
Pamela Collyer
Peter Dvorsky
Mimi Kuzyk
Nicholas Kilbertus
Sabrina Boudot
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