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3.9 out of 5 stars62
3.9 out of 5 stars
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on March 26, 2004
Washington, DC police detective Alex Cross (Freeman) receives a call that his niece Naomi has been abducted from the Durham area, and he decides that he needs to go there to help find her. Once he gets there, he is informed that one of the women abducted has been found dead tied to a tree. He, along with Nick Ruskin (Elwes) and Davey Skes (McArthur), the two Durham detectives heading up the task force, head out to the location. Alex is fearful that it's his niece, but is relieved that it's not her.
Meanwhile, we meet Kate McTiernan (Judd), a doctor at the local hospital. Not only is she a doctor, but she's also a kick-boxer. But that does her little good when she discovers a stranger in her house, who knocks her unconscious. When she comes to, she finds herself in a small room. And shortly after regaining conscious, the person who has abducted her appears at her bedside. She manages to get out of the room and escapes by jumping into a river. After she recovers, she decides to help Alex out with his investigation, against his protests. But he realizes that she's his best opportunity to find his niece, so reluctantly agrees.
The abducter starts taunting the police, sending them notes about the women. He signs his notes as Cassanova. Cassanova was a great lover, and Alex deduces that he isn't a killer, he's a collector. He only kills when the women disappoint or cross him. After some more investigating, he finds a connection between Cassanova and a plastic surgeon on the West Coast. It seems that there are also a string of abductions there, but these women all turn up dead, with one of their feet missing.
I can't say any more without giving away too much of the plot. KISS THE GIRLS has a good story, with very good acting by all involved. When Judd's character of McTiernan is in her cell communicating with the other girls, she's so convincing that it's like she was actually there. Morgan Freeman is very good in the role of Alex Cross. The supporting cast is pretty good, as well.
**SPOILER** The only real problem I have with KISS THE GIRLS is that the story, which is good as I said above, is just too similar to a lot of other movies in the thriller genre. It's really frustating to see movie after movie with the "killer is someone we met earlier" plot-line. It might have been clever at one time, but now it is just so common-place, that the viewer almost automatically look for clues as to who the killer is. I had this one pegged not too long after we first meet him.
Based solely on the story of this movie, I would give it a three. It's basically the same movie the viewer has seen before, but with a different twist on the plot. But I have to give it a four because of the acting, especially Freeman and Judd. If Freeman has made a bad movie, I haven't seen it yet. I recommend this movie, but if you pay attention, you can figure out who Cassanova is without too much difficulty. Story rates a three, but the acting pulls it up to a four. Go check it out.
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on March 20, 2003
I enjoyed thsi film for what it was. I'm sure that the books are much moere detailed into the characters but that for the sake of economizing time and plot, the movie moves along swiftly. The twist of a killer's victim getting away but still being necessary to being bait was a good twist as a plot point. I enjoyed Judd and Freeman working together---I don't think it could quite be called a sexual chemistry as much as an easiness with one another and a seeming respect for each other's abilities. That personal quality translates nicely to the screne so that I got the feeling that this police officer might trust Judd to help get his niece back. A good movie, though necessarily amazing, like Seven or Silence of the Lambs, but worth a viewing.
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on November 16, 2003
Nothing ingenious in the plot, nothing you wouldn't have seen before (it is almost "Se7en"-esque, come to think of it) but the handling of the crime thriller theme is different. There is a clever "bi-coastal" angle to the murders under investigation (I won't spoil it with an explanation) and the police investigators do well to identify it.
BUT, it's the terrible screenplay that makes the movie's flow rather jerky. So much sudden stuff happened during the course of the detective sleuthing that I couldn't help not caring towards the second half. The finale is mildly predicatable, and the last straw that identifies the killer is so knuckle-headed that it takes away from the overall smart flavor of the film.
On the upside, the shooting of the killer in the denouement is pretty novel (just so you wait until the end.) Morgan Freeman maintains every bit of his general quiet-yet-powerful screen charisma, and Ashley Judd delivers a very convincing performance of a woman with spirit.
The movie has a good deal of suspense too, kept me riveted. But it surely shows what bad story telling can do to an otherwise great theme.
On a scale of Freeman-Judd pairings, this is much better than "Along came a spider" (if you've seen it) but a weaker sibling to "High Crimes".
Nothing you'd want to own but definitely a recommended rental!
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on May 7, 2012
A very hard CD to find these days in new condition. Another one of my favourite movies. Morgan Freeman and Ashley Judd are two of my favourite actors. From the James Patterson novel of the same name. Great acting, great plot. Keeps you in suspense until the end. Extremely well made movie.
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on July 2, 2001
Morgan Freeman plays a Crime Scene Physcologist who leaves his jurisdiction to head to the college town in North Carolina, where his neice has been abducted by a serial killer/abductor. The intense criminal mind of the abductor feels he must capture smart, beautiful women and hold them captive until they fall inlove with him. If they disobey he ties them to trees for the wild animals. Ashley Judd plays an extremely smart doctor who gets abducted and then ultimately escapes. She then helps Morgan Freeman head up the investigation into the world of one sick mind. It's a very intensive thriller that will have you hanging on the edge of your seat and you won't know the true identity of the killer until the end. Ashely Judd gives her usual outstanding performance, as does Morgan Freeman. I'm not usually a thriller movie buff, but this one might just make me change my mind.
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on July 6, 2015
I'm a sucker for Morgan Freeman thrillers and this one does not disappoint. It's about this guy who calls himself Casanova. He kidnaps women to be his "Lovers" and one night one of the women (Ashley Judd) gets away, barely. She goes to the police and tells them her terrifying tale. Alex Cross (Morgan Freeman) agrees to take her case because he learns that one of his relatives has been taken by this sadistic serial killer. the woman helps the police narrow their search for this psycho and it leads to a pretty exciting climax. You will never guess who the killer is until the very end, they did that very well.
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Kiss the Girls is a disturbing, well-crafted movie that exceeded all of my expectations. It is not what I would call horror per se, but there are certainly some realistic scenes of violence in it. This movie pulls no punches; any ghastly images are there not for shock value but for the simple reason that the story demands them to be there in order for the film to be as powerful as it is. Someone is kidnapping young, attractive girls in North Carolina's Research Triangle area; three have been found dead in the woods, but the rest remain missing. One of the missing is the niece of Washington, D.C. forensic investigator Alex Cross (Morgan Freeman), and he goes to Durham to help find her. Soon thereafter, medical doctor Kate McTiernan (Ashley Judd) is kidnapped from her home. She wakes up to find a masked man telling her how much he loves her; this self-named Casanova has assembled a harem of sorts for himself, keeping the missing girls locked up in separate rooms in an unknown stone-walled location. McTiernan is the only victim to break her captor's rules and survive, and she becomes Cross' greatest asset in his hunt for the criminal. The eventual outcome is somewhat complex, but the terrific script allows for little misunderstanding on the part of the viewer. Most importantly, the conclusion is both spectacular and largely unforeseen; Kiss the Girls triumphs in delivering a thoroughly satisfying ending, a fact which distinguishes it from the majority of action/thriller/psychological horror movies.
Is there a better actor in Hollywood than Morgan Freeman? His virtually perfect acting is greatly complemented here by Ashley Judd's own superb performance. The role of Casanova is also played extremely well, guaranteeing the high-impact drama of the incredible conclusion. As a native North Carolinian, though, I would like to say that the accents of the Durham policemen were not really accurate. I have no other complaints at all. Some may be interested in knowing there is no nudity in this film, which is somewhat refreshing. If you like a suspenseful thriller along the lines of Silence of the Lambs, you will almost certainly enjoy Kiss the Girls immensely.
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on October 27, 1999
I can't remember any major Hollywood movie to ever deliver such an anti-white message as this slick racist rant, glossed over with a plot so predictable you've seen it a million times on TV. Every white person in this movie--with the exception of Ashley Judd--are all so red-necked and bigoted that you watch them in disbelief. Yet, every black person in this Afro-Centrist screed were so sweet, heavenly and martyred that I was surprised they didn't create computer-generated halo and wings. Yes, they suffer. Oh, how they suffer and weep. Can't some modern-day filmmaker ever portray a real-life person of color without making them unbearable martyrs? Or so weak, they have to have a brave, white amazon like Ashley Judd to come to their rescue? We expect this hate-filled-for-whites garbage from a no-talent Spike Lee. But from a major studio and a so-called major cast? I've visited this particular police station in Chapel Hill, North Carolina and I can promise you, the racist behavior exhibited on the part of cops as portrayed in this progagandist movie would have them all fired within a day. There are dozens of civil rights and black rights groups in that area always on the lookout for even the slightest suggestion of racial condesention. My politically correct friends here in New York--of all skin colors--were also astounded by the deviously slanted portraits of whites in this movie. This is a movie that should be shown in sociology, psychology and history classes on how to dessiminate racist propaganda under the guise of a Hollywood thriller.
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on May 14, 1999
I was not expecting a masterpiece in the art of film making but I have to admit I was taken aback by the sheer awfulness of what I saw. Kiss the Girls tried and failed to live up to the atmospheric thrillers of its type it was trying to immitate. It was indeed a very dark film, but at no time did I remotely feel tense or particulary interested in its outcome. Even the otherwise excellent Morgan Freeman failed to gave this film that extra edge it was so badly needing. Having said that there was little any cast could have done with a script straight from the textbook of Hollywood film writing combined with one of the most cliched endings I have ever seen, which went even further to undermine the rest of the film. Flawed on so many fronts it is hard to find a single redeeming feature and is definiteley one to avoid.
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on February 16, 2010
I love this movie!!! It is such a fantastic thriller, with wonderful cast & such an unexpected ending. I have always wanted to own a copy of my own & now I have!
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