Average Rating: 7.9/10
Reviews Counted: 18
Fresh: 18 | Rotten: 0
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Average Rating: 8.5/10
Critic Reviews: 5
Fresh: 5 | Rotten: 0
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 3.9/5
User Ratings: 1,188
In its time, Victim was considered as a daring a film as had ever been made in England. Taken at face value, Janet Green and John McCormick's screenplay is nothing new: Dirk Bogarde plays a lawyer who agrees to defend an old friend (John McEnery) on a theft charge, only to be enmeshed in a blackmailing scheme. What set this one apart is the fact that the lawyer had once been the male lover of his client. At a time when homosexuality was a criminal offense in England, any film that depicted the
Aug 1, 1961 Limited
Jan 21, 2003
Detective Inspector ...
Charles Lloyd Pack
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[Victim] has a careful performance by Bogarde, and it pursues with eloquence and conviction the case against an antiquated statute.
Bogarde is subtle, sensitive and strong. Syms handles a difficult role with delicacy.
There are many pleasures to be found in the quirky supporting cast, expressive, noir-style lighting and an effectively suspenseful opening.
The very fact that homosexuality as a condition is presented honestly and unsensationally, with due regard for the dilemma and the pathos, makes this an extraordinary film.
Recent critics find Victim timid in its treatment of homosexuality, but viewed in the context of Great Britain in 1961, it's a film of courage.
What a gripping film -- melodramatic and self-conscious, yes, but forthright and bold.
Impeccably liberal, weirdly restrained and, aside from anything else, a fascinating historical document.
The intensity of Bogarde's performance, not least where he confesses to wife Sylvia Syms his homosexual desires, transcends the film's well-intentioned cautiousness.
Immensely significant in its plea for tolerance for gay men (interestingly, lesbianism is not discussed here), Victim works hard arguing that gays are part of the typical, healthy fabric of society.
If it now appears quaintly old-fashioned in its attitudes and assumptions, it still impresses thanks to Dirk Bogarde's performance.
Moralistic thriller with a sincere plea for Great Britain to end its oppressive law that makes it a criminal offense to be a homosexual.
... a startlingly handsome feature with a theatrical flair and a shadow of a crime thriller running through it.
Still convincing as a thriller, if a little quaint now, in its approach to the themes surrounding homosexually.
Shot in widescreen black and white, Victim is an exceptionally well-produced film with bracing contrast in its dark shadows.
One can only hope this re-release awakens people to the true power of Basil Dearden's film and the extraordinary bravery of Dirk Bogarde's performance.
Audience Reviews for Victim
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