U.S.A. • 1985 • COLOUR • DOLBY STEREO • 130 MIN.

Two contract killers (Jack Nicholson and Kathleen Turner) fall in love. He works for the Mafia, she freelances. Their marriage becomes contaminated by conflicting loyalties: who will be the first for the big sleep?

A screwball comedy about Family planning, ‘Prizzi’s Honor’ is also a film noir about love crushed by cruel circumstance and the ruthless claims of power politics (in this instance, a synonym for organised crime). Richard Condon’s novel was both satire and requiem on the ambience of ‘The Godfather’ and Huston is the most congenial of collaborators, never more at ease than when dealing with left-handed forms of human endeavour and directing with a deadpan gravity that conceals a lethal punch. This was the big mainstream success of his latter years, being nominated for eight Oscars and winning one for daughter Anjelica, superb in the role of Nicholson’s jilted fiancee, who, in this treacherous world, turns out to be the most dangerous and malevolent player of all.—Neil Sinyard.

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