Rolling Stone - 09/08/1994
"...The movie is a technical marvel, stunningly photographed..."
Entertainment Weekly - 04/01/2000 Ranked #1 in Entertainment Weekly's "10 Favorite Films of the '90s" -- "...Fevered genius....[A] hypnotic, revolutionary head trip..."
New York Times - 08/26/1994
"...Stone's vision is impassioned, alarming, visually inventive, characteristically overpowering..."
Film Comment - 11/01/1994
"...[A] brilliantly outrageous film..."
Sight and Sound - 03/01/1995
"...[Harrelson and Lewis are] superb at exaggerating the archetypes of cool psychopathology..."
Chicago Sun-Times - 08/26/1994
"...NATURAL BORN KILLERS is like a slap in the face, waking us up to what's happening..."
Oliver Stone's over-the-top satire on America's worshipful fascination with tabloid criminals stars Woody Harrelson as Mickey Knox and Juliette Lewis as girlfriend-wife Mallory Wilson. Commencing with the dual murder of Mallory's sexually abusive father (Rodney Dangerfield) and grossly negligent mother (Edie McClurg), the anomic couple take off on a three-week killing spree across the country, telling everyone who they are so that they get the credit for their crimes. The media are immediately enthralled with the couple, especially Wayne Gale (Robert Downey Jr.), the bloodthirsty host of a tabloid TV show who follows their every move. By the time they're finally arrested, they've become such huge media stars that the cops treat them more like celebrities than criminals. Even the maniacal limelight-hogging warden of the Batongaville State Prison, Dwight McClusky (Tommy Lee Jones), is in awe. Stone pulls out all the stops in the prison riot, as the unwitting Gale becomes an unwilling participant in his own broadcast of the event. Again the director switches from film to video, from color to black and white, from sitcom parody to newsreel parody, and from one film stock to another, hoping to jar the audience out of its complacency with visual hyperbole.
Woody Harrelson and Juliette Lewis star as Mickey Knox and Mallory Wilson, two young, attractive mass murderers in love in Oliver Stone's wild-eyed satire on the American fascination with criminals. After killing Mallory's loathsome parents, the pair perform a ritual "marriage" and take off on a "honeymoon" killing spree that wipes out 52 people. Bloodthirsty tabloid reporter Wayne Gale (Robert Downey Jr.) reports their every move to an adoring public while warden Dwight McClusky (Tommy Lee Jones) is only too eager to welcome such celebrities to his prison.
Black Comedy |
Essential Cinema |
Love Story |
Prison / Prisoners |
Road To Ruin |
Theatrical Release |
Theatrical release: August 26, 1994.
The prison riot scene took place at the Stateville Correctional Center in Crest Hill, Illinois--342 maximum security prisoners were cleared to act in the Hollywood riot.
The Director's Cut restores footage that was edited from the original release version so it could receive an MPAA R rating. It also includes seven complete scenes that Oliver Stone had voluntarily excised from the movie for its theatrical release. One of these sequences features Ashley Judd as the sister of one of Mickey and Mallory's victims.
"'It's such an outrageous story,' [Oliver Stone] said, 'and in the time between oppositioning the film and making it, tremendous things have happened on America's landscape.'"--interviewed by Bernard Weinraub, New York Times, 8/16/1994
"I shoot good violence. I mean, I know I do."--Oliver Stone