|From 1966 Movie Trailer|
Despite its slightly morbid title, Kiss the Girls and Make Them Die
is a fun action/comedy. Released 50 years ago today, this 1966 Eurospy film boasts some noteworthy set pieces and studio interiors due to a substantial budget granted by producer Dino De Laurentiis.
Mike Conners (Kelly) and Dorothy Provine (Susan) play an appealing pair of special agents (Kelly is CIA, Susan is MI6) who team up in Rio de Janeiro to thwart the Brazilian Ardonian (played with style by the wonderful Raf Vallone), a wacky, wealthy mad scientist/industrialist who has invented a way to render the Earth sterile so he could repopulate it in his image. Ardonian prepares for this worldwide catastrophe by kidnapping beautiful women and keeping them frozen in a hibernation harem for safe-keeping and breeding stock. Just in the nick of time our agents stop this nefarious scheme with the help of Susan’s chauffer, gadgets galore and lots (and lots) of bananas!
The plot is fantastical, but the exceptional acting keeps the movie grounded, not just with the three leads, but with supporting actors as well. Terry Thomas is well cast as Susan’s high capable butler James, and the sultry Seyna Seyn plays the alluring, capable Chinese spy Wilma Soong!
The sparkling comedy combined with fluid action makes Kiss the Girls and Make Them Die
a movie that is highly watchable with key highlights being a (still) spectacular chase sequence
at Rio’s Christ of the Redeemer Statue, a tricked-out Rolls Royce and a women preservation factory developed by main villain Ardonian.
It was this very dedication that enabled many more to rediscover this movie after many decades. And when a high-tech, damsel-in-distress idea with the working title "Pretty Vacant" was optioned to go to script, there were scenes that paid homage to Kiss the Girls and Make Them Die
Blogger Note: Too often, people on the internet take pictures, words or video and repost them without context to fit in a subject catalogue or worst, stroke his ego (you know who you are) by claiming the work. It’s much harder to give tribute to something while staying true to your original voice, but I am more than happy to do it for this hidden spy-fi gem!
When Pretty Vacant
needed a victim who would be subjected to a fate prettier than death, Wilma Soong’s role in Kiss the Girls and Make Them Die
was the obvious inspiration. Right before the film’s climatic scene, Ardonian betrays his Chinese benefactors, cold-heartedly killing all of them except the stunning Soong, as he deems her worthy to be in his new world order. She is then sedated, frozen and moved to cold storage:
The freeze sequence is three minutes long. That’s a huge number of individual movie frames. Comic books don’t have the luxury of unlimited frames, only having 28 pages to tell this year’s Pretty Vacant: Hong Kong Bound. Furthermore, the main character Gigi Gutierrez was to be subjected to the same process as her frozen friend Mindy Soong (a tribute character to her movie counterpart Wilma Soong). Between the tight plotting of the author (me!) and a highly detailed contribution by the artist, Daniel Vega, the sequence was compressed on page five into four panels...
... neatly summed up by the caption: Three minutes later.
It is disconcerting that exposure to many great films has decreased over the years. Between current movie distribution tactics by studios and lack of interest with younger generations, one must make a deliberate attempt to seek out these obscure cult movies. The effort is certainty worth it with Kiss The Girls and Make Them Die. This small Eurospy film not only provides five decades old lessons to Pretty Vacant: Hong Kong Bound, but it is still an entertaining movie today!