Pretentious Pictures Presents:

Kiss of death
A thriller and a black comedy
about a boy with a fatal kiss
and the women who need it
in the spirit of roger corman.
Supporting cast and crew are attached; for the leads we’re looking at Freddie Highmore, who’s done so well in The Good Doctor, and at Melia Kreiling.
Budget: €2 million; need €1 million.
Finance plan: Subsidies to 50%, including 
40% cash-back on the spend in Greece,
where we'll shoot also the American 
interiors, i.e. most of the movie; plus equity,
pre-sales, gap.
Set in New York, it begins on a Greek island
When Otto brings his young mistress Anita on a day trip to an island, she wants to go to the beach. It’s hot! But he wants to climb to the monastery.
Mule-driver Manos watches them pass.


Halfway up, Anita rebels, takes off her clothes and runs in among the trees, daring him, teasing him. He calls to her but she’s gone, and he gets on with his uphill trudge. Manos happens by and follows her to a spring she’s bathing in.
"I know who you are," she says. "I read about you in the guide book. You’re a satyr. And I am a nymph." Otto sees them, and dies.
After dark she finds his body, and sits with it, waiting for help, for dawn. Suddenly Otto grabs her ankle. No he didn’t. He looks at her. She screams. No, he’s just lying there. He pulls her down to him and rapes her. No wait—this is not real. No wait—yes it is. No wait—
Dawn. Has it happened? "Oh, Otto, I hope you didn't make me pregnant. What would come out?" What comes out is Felix.
At the baptism his godmother kisses him—and dies.
In high school a girl corners him. And dies. The islanders believe he has the evil eye, and run them off. Manos half-blieves it himself, and Anita angrily abandons him and takes Felix back to America—
—where she works as a waitress. "Get a girl," she says. "Don't believe all that guff." So he gets a girl. And she dies in his arms. Her parents are distraught, Anita is distraught, and a police inspector comes around wanting to know what happened.
So does Felix, who slaps the truth out of his mother. Now he has nightmares about Otto, who talks to him and, like Hamlet’s father, wants to make his son a sword of vengeance.
At high school the other kids have heard, and won’t go near him. He doesn’t dare even touch Dorothy, the girl he's in love with. Which is not something she can accept or understand.
"What is it, a kiss?" 
"A kiss. A caress. An intention." 
"An intention to what?" She reaches her hand across the table for his. 
"Careful." 
"It would be romantic, to die together." 
"What makes you think I’d die?"
He's a bright student at university, but without Dorothy, without any love life, it isn’t much. At graduation his embarrassing and guilt-ridden mother embarrasses him, and sees the look he exchanges with Dorothy, and Dorothy’s new fiancé.   
On Wall Street he’s a wunderkind, very successful, and climbing fast. So what? Come night, he gets real real drunk and stands on the roof of his building daring himself to jump. But he can't.
Goes to a bar. A woman, also drunk, says, "Ever tried to kill yourself?" "Me? " "See anyone else in here? " "Yeah. Now that you mention it, I have." "Couldn’t do it, huh? Neither could I."
She’s dying, wants out, picks him up, takes him home, and he has his first sex with another human being. In the morning, she’s dead. And he, finally, is alive!
He doesn’t pause, he goes straight to a chemo clinic looking for his next lover. And finds her. And finds another. And another. Now he has his niche: financial advisor by day, mercy seducer by night. 
 
The inspector is right on his trail—the morgue is filling up with mysteriously dead women—but what can he prove? 
His father coaches him in his dreams. “I like the way you’re handling this.”
When his mother visits him in his fancy office he introduces his boss Jack, who immediately flirts. "This is a mother?"
She is miserable about Felix’s fate, so over lunch he confides to her his secret. She is horrified:
"Do they know they’re going to die? Talking about it isn’t the same as wanting it!"
"Each case is different," he says.
"You’re making the decisions for them! " But she can’t help but be curious. "How long does it take?"
He puts cash by his plate, counts more out for her. "Ten minutes, half an hour. It varies."
"Is it when you kiss them?"
"Kiss, touch—anything that’s warm with desire."
With an accusing whisper, "Do you make love to them after they’re dead?"
He gives her some money and gets up. "Got to go."
But life isn’t perfect. Dorothy, who works in finance too, and who has never been able to marry, is out of his reach. She doesn’t know about his night job and, passionate that they sleep together, introduces a sword to separate them, à la Tristan and Isolde.
Only with Bald Woman does he decline to follow through. Motorcycle tough, she has made her chemo baldness part of her butch style, and is after Felix, not only because she’s hot for him. Word is out, and she wants that kiss.
But close to death as she is, she’s just too alive to kill. He evades her, but she finds him and wreaks havoc on his day job—gets him fired—and on his chaste relationship with Dorothy.
In a dream Anita finds herself back on the island, begging Otto to lift the curse. 
"Lift it yourself," he says. 
"Otto, please! You don't want me to do that!" 
He laughs demonically. 
So when Felix has lost everything, and shows up dead drunk, she puts him to bed, and gets in with him. And he wakes up in horror with his mother’s corpse.
But the curse is lifted—for the moment.
Pretentious pictures presents
kiss of death
A thriller and a black comedy
about a boy with a fatal kiss 
and the women who need it.

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