Defence of the Realm

  • PG
  • David Drury (1985)
  • UK
  • 91 min
Defence of the Realm
Film Review
Reviewed By
4 out of 5

The role of the sozzled veteran reporter who for once finds himself involved in a meaningful story is brought wonderfully to life by Denholm Elliott, here attempting to clear the name of an MP who's forced to resign after a sex scandal. Gabriel Byrne, as Elliott's ambitious young colleague, is less effective, but the film has plenty of tension and co-star Greta Scacchi proves a worthy accomplice. This unsettling movie proves the truth of the maxim that all governments are up to no good.

Plot Summary

Thriller starring Gabriel Byrne, Greta Scacchi and Denholm Elliott. When a British politician and an East German military attaché are linked in a call-girl scandal, journalist Nick Mullen is assigned to the story. Meanwhile, Mullen's drunken colleague Vernon Bayliss is convinced of the politician's innocence.

Cast and crew


Nick Mullen
Gabriel Byrne
Nina Beckman
Greta Scacchi
Vernon Bayliss
Denholm Elliott
Dennis Markham
Ian Bannen
Victor Kingsbrook
Fulton Mackay
Jack Macleod
Bill Paterson
Harry Champion
David Calder
Arnold Reece
Frederick Treves
Leo McAskey
Robbie Coltrane
Trudy Markham
Annabel Leventon
Micky Parker
Graham Fletcher-Cook
Steven Dyce
Steven Woodcock


David Drury

Other Information

Theatrical distributor: 
Rank Film Dists Ltd
Available on video and DVD
Certificate PG