The Killers

The Killers

Ernest Hemingway’s simple but gripping short tale “The Killers” is a model of economical storytelling. Two directors adapted it into unforgettably virile features: Robert Siodmak, in a 1946 film that helped define the noir style and launch the acting careers of Burt Lancaster and Ava Gardner; and Don Siegel, in a brutal 1964 version, starring Lee Marvin, Angie Dickinson, and John Cassavetes, that was intended for television but deemed too violent for home audiences and released theatrically instead. The first is poetic and shadowy, the second direct and harsh as daylight, but both get at the heart of Hemingway’s existential classic.

Film Info

  • Spine #176

Films In This Set

Special Features

  • New high-definition digital restorations of both films, with uncompressed monaural soundtracks on the Blu-rays
  • Andrei Tarkovsky’s short film adaptation of Ernest Hemingway’s “The Killers,” made when he was a student in 1956
  • Interview from 2002 with writer Stuart M. Kaminsky about both films
  • Audio recording from 2002 of actor Stacy Keach reading Hemingway’s short story
  • Screen Directors’ Playhouse radio adaptation from 1949 of the 1946 film, starring Burt Lancaster and Shelley Winters
  • Interview from 2002 with actor Clu Gulager
  • Audio excerpt from director Don Siegel’s autobiography, A Siegel Film, read by actor and director Hampton Fancher
  • Trailers
  • PLUS: Essays by novelist Jonathan Lethem and critic Geoffrey O’Brien

New cover by Lucien S. Y. Yang