THE HONEYMOON KILLERS (1969)
Article 5144 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Leonard Kastle and Donald Volkman
Featuring Shirley Stoler, Tony Lo Bianco, Mary Jane Higby
What it is: Crime / romance
A lonely, overweight and miserable nurse meets and falls in love with a Spanish man through a lonely hearts club. She discovers he is a gigolo who romances women for their money, but she loves him enough that she decides to stay with him and aid him in his schemes. But she’s a jealous woman, and when pushed, she begins using murder to eliminate her lover’s marks.
Most of my sources do not list this as a horror movie, and though it does to some extent deal with serial killing, it is very marginal in that regard. Plotwise, it’s something of a cross between MONSIEUR VERDOUX and PRETTY POISON, but the emotional center of the movie is a love story; most of the pivotal events in the movie are the result of the characters’ love for each other. Because of that emotional center, you do become somewhat attached to these characters and you care about them, even though they engage in some heinous activities. One of the most interesting aspects about the movie is that the two lovers look nothing like your usual Hollywood love interest, and because of this, you keep expecting that the love will ultimately fail or that someone is merely using the other person. The movie is fascinating, though it isn’t perfect; things get rather slow in the middle of the movie when it spends too much time with the attempt to bilk a somewhat paranoid older woman of her money. The ending is, however, truly memorable, and is one of my favorite parts of the movie. This one is worth catching, even if it remains marginal in a genre sense.