I Hired a Contract Killer

  • Dir: Aki Kaurismäki

  • Finland, Swedeen, 1990, English, 79mins, DCP

  • Cast: Jean-Pierre Léaud, Margi Clarke, Kenneth Colley

Sacked from his civil service job, a lonely and desperate Frenchman tries to kill himself in vain, so hires a contract killer to bump him off. Tasting his first whiskey during his final hours, he falls for a flower girl, and life suddenly isn’t the dead end it seems – if he could cancel the contract. Aki dares to turn the symbol of new-wave romanticism, Jean-Pierre Léaud, into a misanthrope, giving him a sad-dog face shrouded in the London mist. Steeped in Hitchcockian suspense and noirish tropes, this droll thriller is sublimely sad yet achingly funny, moving from everyday realism through melodrama towards a surprising ending – proving that life is hard but still amazing!

Venice Film Festival: In Competition


    In-theatre Screening