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Bitter Victory

  • Drama
  • 1957
  • Nicholas Ray
  • 101 mins
  • PG

Summary

Two British officers are assigned to lead a raid on a German stronghold in Libya and steal secret documents. However, one of the pair suspects the other of having had an affair with his wife and the tension between them threatens the mission. Second World War drama, starring Richard Burton, Curt Jurgens, Ruth Roman and Christopher Lee.

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Review

Rating: 3 out of 5.

In director Nicholas Ray's taut and fraught war drama, Richard Burton and Curt Jurgens lead an assault on Rommel's HQ. But as the mission proceeds, Jurgens cracks up under the strain and takes it out on Burton. Everything stems from an affair Burton has had with Jurgens's wife (Ruth Roman). The picture veers from realism to surrealism (at one point we see Jurgens watching a scorpion crawl over Burton) and then to overblown melodrama. Jurgens is an impressive fraudulent hero, while Burton, in what many regard as one of his finest performances, comes across as a sort of TE Lawrence figure, the neurotic scholar-soldier. It's also refreshing to see Christopher Lee on the side of the angels for a change, playing a cockney sergeant in Burton's unit. It was filmed in Libya and heavily cut for American release.

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Credits

Cast

rolename
Captain LeithRichard Burton
Major BrandCurt Jurgens
Mrs BrandRuth Roman
MakronRaymond Pellegrin
General PatersonAnthony Bushell
Lt Col CallanderAlfred Burke
Sergeant BarneyChristopher Lee
Lieutenant BartonSean Kelly
Lieutenant SaundersRamon De Larrocha
Private WilkinsNigel Green
Private BerowiningHarry Landis
Private SpicerJo Davray

Crew

rolename
DirectorNicholas Ray

Details

Theatrical distributor
Columbia Picture Corp
Released on
2004-01-02
Language
English
Formats
Black and white
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