What would be your reaction if, say, a friend invited you to a home screening of Robert Siodmak‘s The Killers? Not a viewing of the Criterion 1080p Bluray version on a 77-inch Sony Bravia OLED 4K UHD TV, but a 16mm print projected onto a big sparkly screen or perhaps even a bedsheet?

If you’re a serious film buff, your reaction would be “damn right” — a church service with friends! The rickety-clickety-rickety-clickety sound of the projector, two big reels, the sharp beam of light, the bassy-squawky sound.

Miklos Rosza‘s main-title theme (hohm-buh-BUM-bohm) was half-stolen by the Dragnet series, which premiered in 1951 — the composer was Walter Schumann.

The nub of The Killers is this — Burt Lancaster‘s Pete Lund is a loose cannon and pretty close to an idiot — he has the emotional constitution of a sullen, poorly raised ten-year-old. If you ask me Lund had those bullets coming for ripping off his partners in that robbery so he could spend the dough on Ava Gardner, except she was no good for the start…that was obvious. So he was a fool, a sap.