Town Without Pity - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Town Without Pity Reviews

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½ February 25, 2016
Between a 6/10 and 7/10, A picture that raises important moral and judicial questions must do so in terms of rounded, dimensional characters if it is to register with impact. Town without Pity fails in this regard save for Douglas' electrifying performance.
February 11, 2016
The courtroom drama is strong, but the jazzy soundtrack is all wrong for this film.
½ January 2, 2014
The Ugly Hate the Beautiful and the Poor Hate the Rich--Gripping, powerful, shocking for its time!!
Super Reviewer
December 17, 2013
A bit numb courtroom drama. It wasn't tense, emotional, thrilling or gripping enough. It rather seemed to focus more on the state of the town's mindset. And it wasn't an appealing approach. Strong dialogues and aggressive performances might have helped. Otherwise, except for the Berta Kulig's testimony sequence, there isn't much in terms of entertainment. On the whole, numb as it is, it's still a watchable piece. More or less.
½ September 7, 2013
I saw this film on TV over 30 yrs ago. Just rented it from Netflix because it was that good. Great performances from all the cast.
September 4, 2013
A very powerful tale of unrelenting hate towards a young girl by the burghers of a small German town.

The real culprit in the crime the girl endures is not just the four soldiers who raped her, but the German town, with all its nasty people, who condemn a girl who endured a horrifying experience. From the nosy neighbor who watched her exercise to a nosy old busybody who repeated every word and action the young couple did, to the parents of both the girl and the boy that turned against their own flesh--they were all as guilty as the rapists in the girl's eventual suicide.

The part of Karin is played by Christine Kaufmann, who was only 16 at the time, and the audience is at first brought to think she is the town slut, when in fact she is just a normal girl who is violated first by the rapists, and then by the narrow-minded people (even her parents) that by the end of the film, the audience feels nothing but pity for what the girl has endured,

Even the Army attorney defending the doldiers involved who tears her apart in the courtroom (Kirk Douglas) becomes so disgusted at what he had to do to break her down, throws up violently when he hears she committed suicide.

The haunting Gene Pitney song closes with "Town Without Pity", reflecting the ugliness of the act of rape and the town that abandoned a troubled young woman.
Super Reviewer
August 30, 2013
Very well acted but an ugly look at the viciousness of the human race.
September 3, 2012
good plot development
½ September 3, 2012
what is social status to you?
February 7, 2012
gets a star 4 the still great theme song
November 30, 2010
even in 1960 germany you got gossip folks. Kirk Douglas does it again...
½ September 18, 2010
I once saw this movie on television. It's ok at best. Good acting from Kirk Douglas, but the rest of the cast was lacking.
½ August 7, 2009
Another Gene Pitney reference, but this time the song is the theme of the film. Very gritty film for it's day, Kirk Douglas gives a less restrained performance than Richard Widmark did in "Judgement At Nuremburg" two years later, playing much the same character. For years, when this was shown in NYC on TV, The Times TV section said "Very good drama but get rid of that song!" WRONG!
July 4, 2009
Okay so a German movie with no Nazis i know it sounds racist but hey what can you do. it was still good in its own right.
½ July 2, 2009
It seems rape trials brought out the best in classic Hollywood screenwriters (based on this and its equally smart predecessor, "Anatomy of a Murder"). While the trial participants, including the unusually uninteresting E.G. Marshall, are cookie cutters, Douglas' conflicted defense attorney prefigures the whole Law & Order gestalt of hoping information and logic can free one from the vise of moral ambiguity. Douglas seems to have been cast here on the strength of his overtaxed captain in "Paths of Glory" four years earlier. Look for Robert Blake and Gomer Pyle's mean boss as two of the freaked-out defendants. Oh and btw, the Gene Pitney song ("Pulp Fiction") is here, but it couldn't have less to do with the proceedings.
March 11, 2008
Fantasic military police thriller. Just great
October 23, 2007
A fascinating film. Much of the victim blaming would never fly today, but the film does a great job potraying the purely he/she nature of a rape trial. Kirk Douglas was incredible as the defense attorney. And I was paticularly impressed with Robert Blake and Richard Jaekel as two of the four soldiers. Jaekel, while he doesn't have many lines sits next to Douglas and has alot of camera time, and his reactions during the trial are amazing. A film that really makes you think.
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