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The Killing Gene

3.7 out of 5 stars 28 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

How far would you go to save the one you love? Stellan Skarsgard (Exorcist: The Beginning) stars as Eddie Argo, a veteran cop investigating a string of bizarre serial murders. In each case, the victims were forced to make the unconscionable decision to save themselves or the life of a loved one. Now Eddie and his rookie partner (Melissa George, Alias) must stop the carnage before the killer strikes too close to home. Featuring Selma Blair (Hellboy) in a terrifying performance, The Killing Gene is a "thought-provoking and brutal horror-thriller that keeps the audience on the edge of the seat until the gripping conclusion" (evildread.com).

Amazon.com

A murderer with a bizarre formula and a thirst for revenge is loose in The Killing Gene, a trendy-looking thriller that has a few genuine surprises up its sleeve. In a dark, dank metropolis (shot in Belfast), hard-bitten veteran cop Stellan Skarsgard is paired with a svelte new partner (Melissa George) straight out of a hand-lotion ad. Their by-the-numbers bickering needs to end soon, because the killer is carving weird symbols in the flesh of the victims, and a Seven-like system is behind it all. There's no denying the oppressive atmosphere here, although by contrast Seven included recognizable signs of human life, such as humor and sadness, which this film noticeably lacks. More damagingly to the cop-movie point, the two leads are miscast, with George too deft for her one-note role and the able Skarsgard trying too hard to fit into the mold of the gruff American detective who gargles with rocks. He's an excellent actor, but the accent seems to have distracted him from concentrating on the performance. Selma Blair turns in an interesting turn as a woman connected with a former case, but her dark madness alone isn't enough to lift the film above its disagreeable level. --Robert Horton

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Barbara Adair, Stellan Skarsgård, Peter Ballance, Selma Blair, Melissa George
  • Directors: Tom Shankland
  • Writers: Clive Bradley
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Dimension Extreme
  • DVD Release Date: August 12, 2008
  • Run Time: 104 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00151QY9Y
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #51,302 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Killing Gene" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
"The Killing Gene" stars Melissa George as rookie detective Helen O'Mara who is paired with veteran Eddie Argo [Stellan Skarsgard] who is reputed to be a by-the-book cop. They find themselves on the trail of a mysterious killer who seems to target members of a local gang notorious for their acts of violence, each of whom is murdered and carved with "W Delta Z". As they dig deeper, they find that the killings are all related and Helen's in-depth investigation reveals a troubling aspect to the case that is linked to an old case, one which Det Argo would rather not revisit.

This is quite a compelling thriller that makes the viewer think and try to sort out the clues that reveal the motives behind the gruesome murders. There are scenes of torture here that are reminiscent of movies like Saw and Hostel, and disturbingly one involving a kid. The basic premise here has to do with retribution, and this theme is truly convincingly portrayed. The two leads as portrayed by Skarsgard and George are credible in their roles, especially Skarsgard, and finally, there is Selma Blair in one of the most intense roles of her career thus far. Without revealing too much of the plot, I would recommend this movie for those who like compelling thrillers with twists.
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Format: DVD
The premise of Sartre's "No Exit" is that hell is other people. The flip side plays in "The Killing Gene" directed by Tom Shankland. Hell is choosing to kill someone you love in place of yourself.

The premise begins in a research laboratory with animals. Put one wild card animal in a cage with a group of like kind: snake in with monkeys. Would one monkey sacrifice his life for the others? The research says no. The researcher said the monkeys become just genes. Then two lab assistants decide a twist of provocation on people, beginning with the third lab assistant (Selma Blair) and her mother. They savagely rape and torture her until she kills her mother to stop the hideous assault. The brief snippets of these brutal, bloody hours are not for the squeamish.

Then the serial killings begin through twists and turns of who does what to whom. It becomes a grisly story of extreme betrayal of love and trust. Or are we turned into "genes" in the savage grip of shrieking pain, and it becomes every person for him or herself.

The two newly paired detectives, veteran cop Eddie Argo, played by Stellan Skarsgard (who performs a 180 from his recent role in "Mamma Mia") and Melissa George, a terrified rookie in desperate circumstances but who has the guts to do her job and do it well. This is a detective squad taken right from the set of "Shield"--gritty, profane, probably dirty, and weary and numb from the rawness and violence of their daily lives. As Eddie tells his partner, "There are always shades of gray."

The story is truly film-noir with dark, ugly streets, littered, grafittied halls and walls, dirty, stinking settings in most scenes. So add this bizarre form of serial killing for this squad to solve. Nothing is as it seems.
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Format: DVD
THE KILLING GENE is a bleak thriller filled w/ revenge, torture, and murder. A past crime has caused its victim to exact vengeance in a most grisly, yet intriguing manner. Stellan Skarsgard and Melissa George play the cops who must solve the case before the killer finishes this grim business. Selma Blair (HELLBOY 1 and 2) is chilling in her cold, almost dead portrayal of the woman out for revenge and release. She is superb in this role. Skarsgard and George are also good, as are the rest of the cast. If you enjoyed the SAW or HOSTEL films, or SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, SE7EN, or tv's WIRE IN THE BLOOD, then GENE should satisfy...
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Format: DVD
One of the most harrowing and psychologically disturbing torture-themed horror movies out there, The Killing Gene (aka W-Delta-Z) is one that was good upon watching it, but that I actually came to appreciate more in the days following it, as events and ideas played around in my mind and I looked at it in different ways. On the surface an overwhelmingly nihilistic movie, you realize after a while that there are subtle aspects and rays of imperfect light peaking through all the vicious darkness that add an unexpected texture.

A jaded police veteran (Stellan Skarsgard of 'The Exorcist: The Beginning') and a young rookie (Melissa George of '30 Days Of Night' and 'Turistas') are the main investigators who uncover a ghastly trail of serial double-murders where in each case, one victim appears to have been tortured into killing the other, usually someone close to them. The case leads down a dark and bloody trail of clues and possible motivations, and surprisingly, the mastermind behind the double-murders turns out to be far from the most vicious character in the series of events. The Killing Gene starts painting a very cynical, very unflattering portrait of humanity, full of loathesome low-lifes and utterly battered-down, mentally defeated would-be good guys, and it's not easy to shrug it off because it's done so damn well. But there are glimmers of other things in there amidst all the raw evil too: shades of characters who've done terribly the wrong thing but thought at the time it was for the right reason; a burgeoning compassion that emerges only in a desperate scene of viciousness; and the strange attempt at a path to redemption taken by a character who was bent into something dark by events absolutely beyond their control.
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