Butterfly Kiss (1994)

UK, 1995
88m, 2537 metres
35mm, colour, black and white
Dolby Stereo Digital, English

A British borderline film directed by Michael Winterbottom.

Plot Summary

The psychotic Eunice roams the motorways of northern England, going one filling station to another in search of Judith, who she claims to be in love with. Then she meets Miriam, who takes pity on Eunice and takes her home. The naive Miriam joins Eunice's on her search for Judith, but soon comes to realise that Eunice is a cruel and vicious killer…


Director: Michael Winterbottom
© Dan Ltd MCMXCIV []
British Screen and Merseyside Film Production Fund present a Dan Films production
Producer: Julie Baines
Script: Frank Boyce Cottrell
From an idea by Frank Boyce Cottrell & Michael Winterbottom
Director of Photography: Seamus McGarvey
Editor: Trevor Waite
Original Music: John Harle
Sound Recordist: Ronald Bailey
Costume Designer: Rachael Fleming
Make Up/Hair Designer: Maureen McGill
Art Director: Rupert Miles

Amanda Plummer (Eunice)
Saskia Reeves (Miriam)
Paul Bown (Gary)
Freda Dowie (Elsie)
Fine Time Fontayne (Tony)
Des McAleer (Eric McDermott)
Ricky Tomlinson (Robert)
Kathy Jamieson (Wendy)
Lisa Jane Riley (Danielle)
Paula Tilbrook (Ella)
Elizabeth McGrath (waitress)
Joanne Cook (Angela)
Shirley Vaughan (waitress)
Emily Aston (Katie)
Katy Murphy (Judith)
Adele Lawson (wife)
Jeffrey Longmore (husband)
Suzy Yannis (motel receptionist)
Julie Walker (shop assistant)
Kelly (Kelly)

Alternative Titles

Besos de mariposa – Spanish title
Butterly kiss – il bacio della farfalla – Italian title
Butterfly Kiss – tappaja tiellä – Finnish title
Killer on the Road


New Musical Express 19 August 1995 p.30
“An English road movie unafraid of big themes like redemption, death, magic and loss. […] [A] truly modern celluloid portrait of this country as a wasteland of grubby motorway services and cheesy theme parks, all scabby surfaces with brooding nastiness beneath. The bad news is, Butterfly Kiss is still to verbose and theatrical in getting its point across. […] Former Brookside and Coronation Street writer Frank Cottrell Bryce loads his script with religious symbolism but never delivers any clear conclusions. Then there's Plummer's Hollywood-ised Lancashire accent, grating sorely along Reeves' expert version. The ultimate effect is of a confused journey, setting off with great purpose but gradually getting lost on the back road of its intentions.” – from an illustrated review by Stephen Dalton

Videoscope no.25 (Winter 1998) p.7
“Unless you're aching to see a Brit-accented Amanda Plummer naked, save for tattoos, bruises and chains (hey, dude, whatever curls your toes!), you may want to pass on this derivative serial-killer romp. An undeniably intense Amanda portrays a plainly daft over-aged punk lesbian highway psycho (you know the type) who proves mysteriously irresistible to emotionally regressive petrol-station nonentity Reeves, who, though she disapproves of random violence, joins Amanda on her slay spree. The pair emerge as older, less credible variations on the antisocial distaff tandems on view in Rafael Zielinski's Fun […] and Peter Jackson's infinitely superior Heavenly Creatures. In short, we've been down this road too many times before to make Butterfly Kiss a trip worth taking.” – from a review by “The Phantom of the Movies”


Cinema 29 June 1995 – review (by Roland Huschke)
Empire no.75 September 1995 p.42 – illustrated credits, review
European Film Review no.5 (Summer 1995) p.4 – credits, synopsis, review
Film Comment vol.34 no.1 (January/February 1998) pp.44-47 – illustrated article
Film Ireland no.48 (August/September 1995) p.32 – illustrated review
Film Tutti i Film della Stagione vol.6 no.40 (July/August 1999) pp.25-26 – credits, synopsis, review
Films in Review vol.47 no.5/6 (May/June 1996) pp.68-69 – illustrated review
Films in Review vol.47 no.7/8 (July/August 1996) pp.79-81 – illustrated interview
Films in Review vol.48 no.1/2 (January/February 1997) pp.73-74 – illustrated interview
New Musical Express 19 August 1995 p.30 – illustrated review (by Stephen Dalton)
Positif no.420 (February 1996) pp.18-20 – illustrated credits, review
Première January 1996 p.29 – review (by Christian Jauberty)
Premiere vol.3 no.8 (September 1995) p.34 – illustrated interview
Premiere vol.4 no.10 (November 1996) p.84 – note
Screen International no.964 (1 July 1994) p.22 – credits
Screen International no.999 (17 March 1995) p.2 – note
Screen International no.1020 (11 August) p.III – credits, review
Sight and Sound vol.5 no.8 (August 1995) p.42 – credits, synopsis, review
Sight and Sound vol.5 no.9 (September 1995) pp.18-19 – illustrated interview
Trauma no.4 pp.14-15 – review
Variety 20 February 1995 pp.73, 76 – illustrated credits, review
Videoscope no.25 (Winter 1998) p.7 – review (by “The Phantom of the Movies”)

Svenska Dagbladet 24 November 1995 – review (Starkt om kvinnor utan spärrar by Elisabeth Sörenson)