The Servant

  • 15
  • Joseph Losey (1963)
  • UK
  • 110 min
Film Review
Reviewed By
4 out of 5

Scripted by Harold Pinter from Robin Maugham's novel, this claustrophobic tale of envy and manipulation sees James Fox descend from a champagne lifestyle into a decadent dependence upon his servant, Dirk Bogarde. The snarling story is handled with great insight by director Joseph Losey, who had keenly studied the British class system since being exiled from Hollywood in 1951 during the Communist witch-hunt. Sarah Miles and Wendy Craig impress as the women caught in the powerplay, but this is essentially a two-hander, with Fox admirable as a latter-day Sebastian Flyte and Bogarde (finally nailing his matinée reputation) chilling as the mercenary valet.

Plot Summary

Drama starring Dirk Bogarde, Sarah Miles, Wendy Craig and James Fox. Tony, a rich young man, takes on a manservant, Barrett, to run his Chelsea home. Barrett seizes the opportunity to turn Tony's house into an elegant home. But gradually the relationship between master and servant begins to change.

Cast and crew


Hugo Barrett
Dirk Bogarde
Sarah Miles
Wendy Craig
James Fox
Lady Mounset
Catherine Lacey
Lord Mounset
Richard Vernon
Society woman
Ann Firbank
Older woman
Doris Knox
Patrick Magee
Society man
Harold Pinter


Joseph Losey

Other Information

Black and White
Theatrical distributor: 
Studio Canal
Available on video, DVD and BluRay
Released 22 Mar 2013
Certificate 15