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|Seventies & Eighties Made-For-TV Movies - K|
THE KANSAS CITY MASSACRE 1975 100 min. Dale Robertson, Bo Hopkins, Robert Walden, Scott Brady, Mills Watson, Harris Yulin, Matt Clark. Directed by Dan Curtis. Action-packed period piece, sequel to MELVIN PURVIS, G-MAN, has the indomitable Purvis (cigar-chomping Robertson) vying with Pretty Boy Floyd, John Dillinger, Alvin Karpis and other public enemies. Snappily directed, with a dandy cast and a sense of humor. Above average. KATE BLISS AND THE TICKER TAPE KID 1978 100 min. Suzanne Pleshette, Don Meredith, Tony Randall, Bergess Meredith, Harry Morgan, David Huddleston, Harry Carey, Jr. Directed by Burt Kennedy. Western comedy involving a lady detective from back east, a stuffy English rancher with a rustling problem, and a dapper bandit who fashions himself as a western Robin Hood. Good cast plays it well. Script by William Bowers and John Zodorow. Above average. KATE McSHANE 1975 78 min. Anne Meara, Sean McClory, Charles Haid, Carl Bellini, Christine Belford, Charles Cioffi. Directed by Marvin Chomsky. A flamboyant lady lawyer teams up with her dad, a retired cop, and her brother, a priest/university law professor, to defend a society woman accused of murder. Routine drama with Meara miscast here and in the series that followed. Average. KATHERINE 1975 100 min. Art Carney, Sissy Spacek, Henry Winkler, Julie Kavner, Jane Wyatt, Hector Elias, Jenny Sullivan. Directed by Jeremy Kagan. Absorbing drama written by Kagan about one young woman's radical experience, from innocent to activist to terrorist. Spacek is remarkable in the role. Subsequently cut to 78 min. Above average. KEEFER 1978 74 min. William Conrad, Kate Woodville, Michael O'Hare, Cathy Lee Crosby, Jeremy Kemp, Brioni Farrell. Directed Barry Shear. A crack team of WW2 secret agents led by Conrad (in this post-CANNON pilot) face predictable risks and formula action behind enemy lines. Average. THE KEEGANS 1976 78 min. Adam Roarke, Spencer Mulligan, Heather Menzies, Tom Clancy, Joan Leslie, Paul Shenar, Judd Hirsch, Janit Baldwin, Penelope Windust. Directed by John Badham. Crime drama concerning an investigative reporter's attempts to clear his pro-football brother of murdering their sister's attacker. Average. KENNY ROGERS AS THE GAMBLER 1980 94 min. Kenny Rogers, Bruce Boxleitner, Christine Belford, Harold Gould, Clu Gulager, Lance LeGault, Lee Purcell. Directed by Dick Lowry. In his first starring role Rogers brings his charisma and credible acting abilities to this Western, which used his hit song as a narrative springboard. Average; also known as THE GAMBLER; followed by KENNY ROGERS AS THE GAMBLER, PART II -- THE ADVENTURE CONTINUES. KENNY ROGERS AS THE GAMBLER, PART II -- THE ADVENTURE CONTINUES 1983 200 min. Kenny Rogers, Bruce Boxleitner, Linda Evans, Johnny Crawford, Cameron Mitchell, Mitchell Ryan, Gregory Sierra, Ken Swofford, Harold Gould. Directed by Dick Lowry. The title, ranking among the longest in TV-moviedom, just about sums it up. There's Kenny's charisma, Bruce's charm, and Linda in jeans as the fastest female gun in the West. The original held a record (for a while) as the most-watched TV movie ever, so why not give the fans twice as much of a good thing? Originally shown in two parts. Average. KENT STATE 1981 150 min. Jane Fleiss, Charley Lang, Talia Balsam, Keith Gordon, Jeff McCracken, Michael Higgins, John Getz, Ann Gillespie, Shepperd Strudwick, George Coe. Directed by James Goldstone. An uncompromising depiction of the four days in 1970 that ended in a tragic confrontation at Kent State University in Ohio with four students dead and nine others wounded. Incisive script by Gerald Green and Richard Kramer and intelligent direction by Goldstone, who won an Emmy as Outstanding Director. Above average. KENTUCKY WOMAN 1983 100 min. Cheryl Ladd, Ned Beatty, Peter Weller, Philip Levien, Sandy McPeak, Tess Harper, Lewis Smith, John Randolph. Directed by Walter Doniger. A waitress turns coal miner to support her son and her black-lung afflicted dad. This "Charlie's Angel" doesn't cut it greased up and coal dusted. Below average. THE KID FROM LEFT FIELD 1979 100 min. Gary Coleman, Robert Guillaume, Tab Hunter, Tricia O'Neil, Gary Collins, Ed McMahon. Directed by Adell Aldrich. An appealing remake of the 1953 baseball movie about a bat boy who guides the San Diego Padres from the cellar to the World Series, using the strategy passed on by his father, a big league has-been reduced to hawking hot dogs in the stands. Above average. THE KID FROM NOWHERE 1982 100 min. Beau Bridges, Susan Saint James, Loretta Swit, Ricky Wittman, Lynn Carlin, Rene Auberjonois, Nicholas Pryor, Janet Maclachlan. Directed by Beau Bridges. Sentimental drama about a retarded child's involvement with the Special Olympics. Young Wittman, a real-life Downs Syndrome victim, is especially good in his acting under the tutelage of actor-turned-director Bridges (who plays the coach at a school for the handicapped). Script is by Judy Farrell. Above average. THE KID WITH THE BROKEN HALO 1982 100 min. Gary Coleman, Robert Guillaume, June Allyson, Mason Adams, Ray Walston, John Pleshette, Lani O'Grady, Telma Hopkins, Kim Fields, Georg Stanford Brown. Directed by Leslie Martinson. Apprentice angel Coleman is out to win his wings by patching up the lives of three families in this prospective pilot, teaming for the third time with Guillaume. Average. THE KID WITH THE 200 I.Q. 1983 96 min. Gary Coleman, Robert Guillaume, Dean Butler, Kari Michaelsen, Mel Stewart, Harriet Nelson. Directed by Leslie Martinson. Yet another Coleman vehicle; this time he's a thirteen-year-old genius who goes to college and copes with campus life, with expected results. Average.
KILL ME IF YOU CAN 1977 100 min. Alan Alda, Talia Shire, John Hillerman, Walter McGinn, Barnard Hughes, John Randolph, Ben Piazza. Directed by Buzz Kulik. Fact-based drama by John Gay about Caryl Chessman, the "red light bandit" who spent twelve years on San Quentin's death row before being executed in 1960. Alda's superb portrayal of Chessman gives this one guts. Takes, naturally, the anti-capital-punishment view. Death-penalty advocates should stick with CELL 2455, DEATH ROW, taken from Chessman's best-seller. Above average. KILLER BY NIGHT 1971 100 min. Robert Wagner, Diane Baker, Greg Morris, Theodore Bikel, Robert Lansing, Mercedes McCambridge. Drected by Bernard McEveety. A somewhat tame attempt at a two-sided approach to the mad-killer-on-the-loose story. A diphtheria outbreak conflicts with police efforts until a source for both problems is found to be one and the same. The only asset is good atmosphere. Average. A KILLER IN THE FAMILY 1983 100 min. Robert Mitchum, James Spader, Lance Kerwin, Eric Stoltz, Salome Jens, Lynn Carlin, Stuart Margolin. Directed by Richard T. Heffron. Mitchum cons his three teenaged sons into springing him and a psycho pal from prison and then involves them on a murderous spree. Mitchum towers over the material, as usual. Based on a true story. Average. KILLER ON BOARD 1977 100 min. Claude Akins, Beatrice Straight, George Hamilton, Patty Duke Astin, Frank Converse, Jane Seymour. Directed by Philip Leacock. So-so drama involving vacationers on a cruise ship who are infected with a deadly virus and must be quarantined. Echoes of THE CASSANDRA CROSSING with a change of locale. Average. THE KILLER WHO WOULDN'T DIE 1976 100 min. Mike Connors, Samantha Eggar, Patrick O'Neal, Clu Gulager, James Shigeta, Robert Colbert, Robert Hooks, Gregoire Aslan, Mariette Hartley. Directed by William Hale. A detective-turned-charter boat operator takes up the search for the killer of his undercover agent friend, and becomes entangled in a network of espionage. Busted pilot with Connors back in the Mannix mold. Average. A KILLING AFFAIR 1977 100 min. Elizabeth Montgomery, O.J. Simpson, Rosalind Cash, Dean Stockwell, Dolph Sweet. Directed by Richard Sarafian. Two detectives working on a homicide case become involved in an (interracial) love affair. A cop show is a cop show, even if the leads make a handsome couple. Average. Retitled BEHIND THE BADGE. KILLING AT HELL'S GATE 1981 100 min. Robert Urich, Deborah Raffin, Lee Purcell, Joel Higgins, George DiCenzo, John Randolph, Mitch Carter, Brion James. Directed by Jerry Jameson. River rafters' pleasure trip becomes a whitewater nightmare when snipers begin stalking the group. DELIVERANCE with a couple of girls added. Average. THE KILLING OF RANDY WEBSTER 1981 100 min. Hal Holbrook, Dixie Carter, James Whitmore, Jr., Jennifer Jason Leigh, Nancy Malone, Gary McCleery. Directed by Sam Wanamaker. Holbrook is terrific as a grieving father who wages a tireless investigation into his son's slaying by the Houston police. Based on an actual incident and adapted from a magazine article, "The Throwdown" (police parlance for a weapon planted on a victim after a shooting), by Texas journalist Tom Curtis. Above average. KILLING STONE 1978 100 min. Gil Gerard, J.D. Canon, Jim Davis, Matthew Laborteaux, Corinne Michaels, Nehemiah Persoff. Directed by Michael Landon. A writer is freed after ten years in prison, determined to find the real murderer of a U.S. Senator's son. Pilot for a prospective series, believe it or not. Landon also wrote and produced. Average. KIM 1984 150 min. Peter O'Toole, Bryan Brown, John Rhys-Davies, Ravi Sheth, Julian Glover, Lee Montague. Directed by John Davies. An enthusiastic new version of the Kipling tale about an Indian boy recruited by the British for some high adventure. Brown has the old Errol Flynn role, Sheth makes an impressive debut as Kim, and O'Toole has a high old time as an Indian mystic in a bald wig. James Brabazon wrote this flavorful adaption. Above average. KING CRAB 1980 105 min. Barry Newman, Julie Bovasso, Jeffrey DeMunn, Joel Fabian, Gail Strickland, Harold Gould. Directed by Marvin J. Chomsky. Well-acted drama about two brothers who turn the family business into a battleground, where they wage war for their father's love. Strong performances in an original film that revives memories of the kind of drama that was the mainstay of TV's Golden Age. Writen by Preston M. Ransome. Above average. KINGSTON 1976 100 min. Raymond Burr, Bradford Dillman, Dina Merrill, James Canning, Biff McGuire, Robert Sampson. Directed by Robert Day. Freelance journalist Burr is hired by a publishing mogul to investigate strange editorial positions on her papers and uncovers a plot using nuclear power plants to take over the world. Pilot for the series. Also known as KINGSTON: THE POWER PLAY and THE NEWSPAPER GAME. Average. KISS ME, KILL ME 1976 78 min. Stella Stevens, Michael Anderson, Jr., Dabney Coleman, Claude Akins, Bruce Boxleitner, Pat O'Brien, Robert Vaughn, Tisha Sterling. Directed by Michael O'Herlihy. D.A.'s special investigator Stevens goes on the trail of a young schoolteacher's killer and allows herself to be the bait to trap a psycho. Strictly in the POLICE WOMAN rut, but a nice bit by O'Brien as a morgue attendant. Average. KOROSHI 1967 93 min. Michael Truman, Patrick McGoohan, Yoko Tani, Amanda Barrie, Ronald Howard, George Coulouris. Directed by Peter Yates. British agent John Drake is sent to Japan to combat a deadly sect of assassins based on a secret offshore island. First half better than second (originally two episodes of the SECRET AGENT series); generally uncontrived, exciting. Average.
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