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Bitter Victory

Bitter Victory (1957)

tomatometer

No Score Yet...

Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 4
Fresh: 4 | Rotten: 0

audience

65

liked it
Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 945

My Rating

Movie Info

A commander receives an undeserved citation for an attack on Rommel's headquarters. Unbeknownst to him, his wife is having an affair with one of his officers.

Feb 22, 2005

Sony Pictures Entertainment

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All Critics (17) | Top Critics (5) | Fresh (12) | Rotten (3) | DVD (5)

Nicholas Ray's direction of black-and-white CinemaScope, that freak child of the 50s, is consistently brilliant in this raw, confused masterpiece.

October 23, 2007 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Contemplating the dangerous games men play with macho self-images, this survives as one of Ray's greatest works.

October 23, 2007 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Fine thesping by Richard Burton leads a series of top performances by other members of large cast.

October 23, 2007 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The title tells all.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The film's military detail is in most respects quite ludicrous.

October 23, 2007 Full Review Source: Observer [UK]
Observer [UK]

Odd amalgam of a French film, starring a British, German, and American trio, directed by an American and written by three men from different countries.

October 23, 2007 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

There is a sense that while the men here are well-versed in the theories of war, they are clueless about the realities of combat.

October 30, 2006 Full Review Source: Cinematic Reflections

It's one of Ray's more powerful films.

October 5, 2006 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Nicholas Ray directs with an uncompromising austerity that puts the hypocrisy and the bitter inhumanity of war in focus...

July 5, 2005 Full Review Source: St@tic Multimedia

Bitter Victory shows Ray at the height of his powers, making beautiful use of his black-and-white Cinemascope frame.

April 25, 2005 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

The whole picture, deeply pessimistic and subversive, exerts a fierce grip.

April 9, 2005 Full Review Source: Guardian
Guardian

A starkly shot and probing inquiry into notions of cowardice and heroism.

April 9, 2005 Full Review Source: Film4
Film4

A brilliant, shamefully neglected war movie.

April 9, 2005 Full Review Source: BBC.com
BBC.com

Has almost become eclipsed by the thunder of Jean-Luc Godard's infamously rapturous tribute in the pages of Cahiers.

March 13, 2005 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

...characters remain woefully underdeveloped.

February 26, 2005 Full Review Source: Reel Film Reviews
Reel Film Reviews

Audience Reviews for Bitter Victory

one of ray's more neglected films, it's a stunning black and white widescreen character study of the intense struggle between two british officers on a hopeless mission in the libyan desert. i somehow never realized before that richard burton was hot at one point in time
November 15, 2012
rubystevens
Stella Dallas

Super Reviewer

Stark drama of principles in wartime. Excellent performances from the three leads. Ruth Roman's part is small but integral to the plot and she makes the most of it.
August 27, 2010
jjnxn
jay nixon

Super Reviewer

Burton is strong as is Ray's direction, but this story just falls flat
February 29, 2008
kenstachnik

Super Reviewer

This film succeeds with the acting, but fails with the story. Nicholas Ray gets everything he can out of every character, but the story is bland, the action is bad and the love story is tact on and unnecessary. Burton is fantastic and has a great screen presence. Burton, Jurgens,and the rest of their crew is what makes this film great. Everyone has a memorable character and the desert scenes look great. The story of a coward commander clashing with a noble one is not handled well. It's a forced story as is the love story which is a rip off of Casablanca. I am on the crossroads here,because loved the acting and was bored by everything else. Watch Sahara with Bogart to see a better desert war film.
August 5, 2009
codyfranklin2

Super Reviewer

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Foreign Titles

  • Bitter war der Sieg (DE)
  • Bitter Victory (1957) (UK)
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