Bitter Victory (1957)
Average Rating: 7.4/10
Reviews Counted: 15
Fresh: 12 | Rotten: 3
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 4
Fresh: 4 | Rotten: 0
Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 946
In Nicholas Ray's WWII drama, two British officers, Captain Leith (Richard Burton) and Major Brand (German character actor Curd Jürgens, who would later play Bond foe Karl Stromberg in The Spy Who Loved Me), a South African, are being considered to lead a daring raid to steal crucial documents from a Nazi stronghold in Libya. The two don't seem particularly fond of each other. Brand's wife, Jane (Ruth Roman of Strangers on a Train), arrives on the base. There's an odd awkwardness when Brand
Jan 1, 1957 Wide
Feb 22, 2005
Sony Pictures Entertainment
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Lt. Col. Callander
Ramon de Larrocha
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Nicholas Ray's direction of black-and-white CinemaScope, that freak child of the 50s, is consistently brilliant in this raw, confused masterpiece.
Contemplating the dangerous games men play with macho self-images, this survives as one of Ray's greatest works.
Fine thesping by Richard Burton leads a series of top performances by other members of large cast.
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.
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.
Nicholas Ray directs with an uncompromising austerity that puts the hypocrisy and the bitter inhumanity of war in focus...
Bitter Victory shows Ray at the height of his powers, making beautiful use of his black-and-white Cinemascope frame.
The whole picture, deeply pessimistic and subversive, exerts a fierce grip.
Has almost become eclipsed by the thunder of Jean-Luc Godard's infamously rapturous tribute in the pages of Cahiers.
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