Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments

Kiss Me Deadly (1955)


Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

Kiss Me Deadly (1955)

In Robert Aldrich's classic film noir thriller based on Mickey Spillane's hard-boiled novel, with inventive camera angles depicting violence and murders during the Cold War-Era:

  • in the startling pre-credits sequence, the view of a pair of naked feet stumbling and running down the middle of a lonely highway at night - a near-hysterical, panting, barely-clothed woman with closely-cropped hair who wore only a white trenchcoat, rasped and breathed heavily on the highly-amplified soundtrack, as she helplessly tried to flag down passing cars that flashed by her; she strategically positioned herself in the middle of the road, by standing and holding her arms out in a V [or crucifixion pose] as a two-seated, Jaguar sports car/convertible approached and blinded her in its high-beamed headlights
  • the driver was on his way to Los Angeles - the character of violent, self-serving, mean and misogynistic gumshoe Mike Hammer (Ralph Meeker), who snarled as he picked up the doomed hitchhiker (later identified as Christina Bailey (Cloris Leachman) - "a fugitive from the laughing house"): "You almost wrecked my car. Well? Get in!"
  • the strangely-presented opening credits - the camera positioned itself behind the two and was pointed toward the windshield and the highway's white line as the most disorienting, skewed, upside-down set of film credits began to scroll; the slanted credits cryptically moved from the top to the bottom of the screen, yet they had to be read backwards from bottom to top
  • their drive in Hammer's sportscar, her description of her name, and her words of warning: ("Christina Rossetti wrote love sonnets. I was named after her....Get me to that bus stop and forget you ever saw me. If we don't make that bus stop...if we don't, 'Remember me'") before they were run off the road by a black car
  • the horrifying scene of Christina's screaming torture/murder (mostly off-screen) -- with only her twitching legs dangling off a table, as an unidentified criminal mastermind told his underlings that the victim couldn't be brought back from the dead: ("If you revive her, do you know what that would be? Resurrection, that's what it would be. And do you know what resurrection means? It means raise the dead. And just who do you think you are that you think you can raise the dead?")
  • the image of Lily, aka Gabrielle (Gaby Rodgers) with closely-cropped blonde hair and sitting up in bed with her gun pointed at Hammer's crotch, posing as Christina's roommate
  • the final apocalyptic scenes in the isolated beach house when Lily shot to death her deceitful boss Dr. Soberin (Albert Dekker) (a trafficker in atomic material produced during the Manhattan Project (in Los Alamos, NM)), as he was warning her about the leather-strapped, metal-lined box: ("Listen to me, as if I were Cerberus barking with all his heads at the gates of Hell, I will tell you where to take it. But don't, don't open the box")
  • the scene of Hammer bursting into the room, where Lily greeted him and commanded sexual favors: ("Hello, Mike. Come in. Come in. Kiss me, Mike. I want you to kiss me. Kiss me. The liar's kiss that says 'I love you.' It means something else. You're good at giving such kisses. Kiss me"), and then shot him in the abdomen
  • the amazing sequence of Lily opening the 'whatz-it' box (Pandora's Box), producing a hissing, hellish, unearthly noise that emanated from its interior as the searing light hit her face - she had unleashed the apocalyptic forces inside and the box couldn't be closed, as she became a flaring pillar of fire consuming her
Lily Opening Up The 'Whatz-It' Box - Unleashing Apocalypse
  • the after-math - the nuclear conflagration of the beach house in the brutal finale, as Hammer and his secretary-assistant Velda Wakeman (Maxine Cooper) raced out of the exploding house to the beach, and hugged waist-deep in the foaming waves of the ocean - with the superimposed THE END

Pre-Credits Sequence

Christina to Hammer: "Remember me"

Christina's Torture/Murder

Lily (aka Gabrielle) with Gun Pointed at Hammer's Crotch

Lily: "Come in. Kiss me, Mike"


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