BARRY NORMAN: FILM OF THE DAY The Servant★★★★ 11.00pm-1.00am True Entertainment
Adapted by Harold Pinter from Robin Maugham’s novel [he was nephew to Somerset Maugham] and directed by Joseph Losey, this is a brilliant psychological study of class and sexual warfare in 1960s Britain. James Fox is the indolent young aristocrat who employs Dirk Bogarde as his manservant. But this is no Jeeves and Wooster relationship. Gradually the servant begins to dominate the master until their positions are reversed. Fox’s girlfriend Wendy Craig realises what’s happening but is powerless to stop it, especially when Bogarde introduces Sarah Miles, ostensibly his sister but actually his lover, into the household. A dark, chilling, absorbing movie, laced with sharp humour and splendidly played, especially by Bogarde, here far from the sexy pin-up boy he portrayed in those early Rank Organisation movies.