The Hit (1984) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Hit1984

The Hit (1984)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The Hit Photos

Movie Info

In this offbeat crime film, Willie Parker (Terence Stamp) an English mobster turned informant, has been given a new identity and has been living in a small, isolated village in Spain for 10 years. Unfortunately for Parker, the men he has betrayed have ascertained his whereabouts and send Braddock (John Hurt), a professional hitman, and his apprentice Myron (Tim Roth) to bring Parker to Paris where his ex-associates await. After kidnapping Parker, nothing goes as planned. Now they are followed by a Spanish policeman (Fernando Rey) who seems to anticipate each of their moves, and they are burdened by Maggie (Laura del Sol), the mistress of a fellow mobster they were forced to kill. What should have been a routine hit becomes a psychological battle between all the participants as Parker, in a fight for time and for his life, plays one against the other. Set against the bleak Spanish landscape and featuring evocative and memorable theme music, the film builds to a surprising conclusion where the true nature of all the characters is revealed. Terence Stamp develops the character of Parker in a subtle but surprisingly comic performance and Laura del Sol shines as a woman who will do what is necessary to survive. Tim Roth, in his film debut, plays a brutal, but oddly endearing thug. But it is John Hurt, in a sensitive and nuanced performance, who brings a perceptive intelligence and depth to his role which adds a philosophical and psychological dimension to the film. Hurt plays his difficult role without a misstep and with a rare economy of action. Thoughtful and frequently amusing, The Hit, superbly written by Peter Prince, is both a compelling and suspenseful crime drama and also a deep and profound meditation on life, death and courage.

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Terence Stamp
as Willie Parker
John Hurt
as Braddock
Tim Roth
as Myron
Fernando Rey
as Chief Inspector
Carlos Lucena
as Uniformed Officer
Joaquin Alonzo
as Kidnapper
Emeko Olazagasti
as Young Basque
Freddie Stuart
as Government Agent
Ralph Brown
as Government Agent
A.J. Clarke
as Government Agent
Lennie Peters
as Mr. Corrigan
Bernie Searl
as Hopwood
Brian Royal
as Fellows
Jim Broadbent
as Barrister
Manuel de Benito
as Juan, Willie's Bodyguard
Juan Calot
as Priest
Camilo Vilanova
as Kidnapper
Miguel Garmendia
as Tavern Keeper
Carlos Zabala
as Young Basque
Patxi Barko
as Young Basque
Xavier Aguirre
as Young Basque
Carlos Tristancho
as Garage Attendant
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News & Interviews for The Hit

Critic Reviews for The Hit

All Critics (15) | Top Critics (5)

It is a dexterously balanced killer thriller by the idiosyncratic Frears, whose every scene becomes a matter of life and death. A lighter clicks, a gun clicks; life or death, it all sounds the same.

September 15, 2015 | Full Review…

"The Hit" is something special: thoughtful, perfectly performed and carrying the clear stamp of an extremely interesting director.

September 15, 2015 | Full Review…

Frears and writer Peter Prince have taken a potentially familiar tale of a gangland betrayal and revenge and made something richly inventive and most entertaining.

July 6, 2010 | Full Review…

All in all, a very palpable hit.

June 24, 2006 | Full Review…
Top Critic

These guys don't have to use guns. All they have to do is open their mouths and bore each other to death.

August 30, 2004

A "crime and punishment" saga that's more interested in ideas than actions, it's a choice choice for discerning viewers up for vigorous bouts of wordplay between its characters.

October 30, 2020 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Hit

Antagonizing conceptions of life and death among criminals. An stylish and multi-layered examination of that moment of truth, of coming to terms with the vague but terrifying notion of parting this world. Fantastic performances by the leading triad. Probably Frears' best and most underrated cinematic venture.

Pierluigi Puccini
Pierluigi Puccini

Super Reviewer

Pretty good little film. A sparse script and an amazing Terence Stamp performance kept my eyes peeled to this slow-moving snail of a film. I can't say that I didn't enjoy every bit of it though. The way Stamp works everyone in a little chess game is reason enough to see it, but Fernando Rey was completely invisible in this film!

matt sigur
matt sigur

Super Reviewer


It's a hit ! A little gem of a picure this one. Great casting, great performances and strong and complex characters give this fairly low budget movie a punch that hits (groan) above its weight and keeps the viewer thoroughly involved from start to finish.

The  Shrewlord
The Shrewlord

Super Reviewer

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