The Naked Kiss
From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
"This theme is central to The Baron of Arizona. Reavis's ancient European claims are seen as a threat to the individuality of the settlers in Arizona , his assumption of aristocratic European manners as part of a strategy of deceit and of an unhealthy obsession. The same link is enforced in The Naked Kiss where Grant's culture, his love for Beethoven, Byron and Baudelaire, are seen as a mere gloss to underlying depravity. This is a traditional American view of Europe, expressed by Henry James among others; pure, innocent America - depraved, devious, corrupt Europe."--Samuel Fuller (1971) by Nicholas Garnham
Christina: You're angry with me, aren't you? Sorry I nearly wrecked your pretty little car. I was just thinking how much you can tell about a person from such simple things. Your car, for instance.
Hammer: Now, what kind of a message does it send ya?
Christina: You have only one real lasting love.
Hammer: Now who could that be?
Hammer: You against good health or somethin'?
Christina: I could tolerate flabby muscles in a man who may be more friendly. You're the kind of a person who never gives in a relationship - who only takes. (Sardonically) Ah, woman, the incomplete sex. And what does she need to complete her? (Mocking) Why, man, of course. A wonderful man.
Hammer: All right, all right, let it go. That bus stop will be comin' up pretty soon and I don't even know your name.
Christina: Yes, Mike. I got your name from the registration certificate, Mr. Hammer. Get me to that bus stop and forget you ever saw me. If we don't make that bus stop...
Hammer: (confidently) We will.
Christina: ...if we don't, 'Remember me.'
--The Naked Kiss (1964) by Samuel Fuller
Kelly (Constance Towers), is a prostitute, and shows up in the town of Grantville, where she engages in a quick tryst with sheriff Griff (Anthony Eisley), who then tells her to stay out of his town and refers her to a cat-house in a nearby town.
Instead, she decides to give up her illicit lifestyle, and becomes involved in working with handicapped children.
Griff doesn't trust reformed prostitutes, and continues trying to run her out of town.
Kelly falls in love with Grant (Michael Dante), the scion of the town's founding family and Griff's best friend. After Kelly convinces Griff that she loves Grant and has given up prostitution for good she murders Grant because she discovers he's a child molester. Kelly has to convince Griff and the town of her motivations for killing Grant were reasonable.
- Constance Towers as Kelly
- Anthony Eisley as Capt. Griff
- Michael Dante as J.L. Grant
- Virginia Grey as Candy
- Patsy Kelly as Mac, Head Nurse
- Marie Devereux as Buff
- Karen Conrad as Dusty
- Linda Francis as Rembrandt
- Bill Sampson as Jerry
- Sheila Mintz as Receptionist
- Patricia Gayle as Nurse
- Jean-Michel Michenaud as Kip
- George Spell as Tim
- Christopher Barry as Peanuts
- Patty Robinson as Angel Face
The staff at Variety magazine gave the film and acting a positive review, writing, "Good Samuel Fuller programmer about a prostie trying the straight route, The Naked Kiss is primarily a vehicle for Constance Towers. Hooker angles and sex perversion plot windup are handled with care, alternating with handicapped children 'good works' theme...Towers' overall effect is good, director Fuller overcoming his routine script in displaying blonde looker's acting range."
Critic Jerry Renshaw liked the film and wrote, "The Naked Kiss finds Sam Fuller's tabloid sensibilities boiling to the surface, as it dwells on the uncomfortable and taboo subjects of deviancy, prostitution, and small-town sanctimony. In typical Fuller style, it's a hard look at a nightmarish world, lurid and absorbing enough to demand that the viewer watch. It's part melodrama, part sensationalism, and part surreal, but above all it's absolutely, positively 100% Sam Fuller, with all the nuance and subtlety of a swift kick in the butt."
- Beethoven's Moonlight sonata
- Baudelaire quote
- Goethe reference
- Reference to male version of Brigitte Bardot