Bitter Victory (1957) - Rotten Tomatoes

Bitter Victory (1957)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Bitter Victory Photos

Movie Info

A commander receives an undeserved citation for an attack on Rommel's headquarters. Unbeknownst to him, his wife is having an affair with one of his officers.

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Richard Burton
as Capt. Leith
Curd Jürgens
as Maj. David Brand
Ruth Roman
as Jane Brand
Anthony Bushell
as Gen. Paterson
Alfred Burke
as Lt. Col. Callander
Christopher Lee
as Sgt. Barney
Sean Kelly
as Lt. Barton
Ramon de Larrocha
as Lt. Sanders
Nigel Green
as Pvt. Wilkins
Harry Landis
as Pvt. Berowing
Jo Davray
as Pvt. Spicer
Sumner Williams
as Pvt. Anderson
Ronan O'Casey
as Sgt. Dunnigan
Fred Matter
as Col. Lutze
Andrew Crawford
as Pvt. Roberts
Raoul Delfosse
as Lt. Kassel
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Critic Reviews for Bitter Victory

All Critics (18) | Top Critics (7)

Nicholas Ray's direction of black-and-white CinemaScope, that freak child of the 50s, is consistently brilliant in this raw, confused masterpiece.

October 23, 2007 | Full Review…

Contemplating the dangerous games men play with macho self-images, this survives as one of Ray's greatest works.

October 23, 2007 | Full Review…

Fine thesping by Richard Burton leads a series of top performances by other members of large cast.

October 23, 2007 | Full Review…

The title tells all.

June 24, 2006 | Full Review…
Top Critic

A brilliant, shamefully neglected war movie.

April 9, 2005 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

The whole picture, deeply pessimistic and subversive, exerts a fierce grip.

April 9, 2005 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Bitter Victory

In "Bitter Victory," General Paterson(Anthony Bushell) is in a bit of a pickle with a sudden dangerous mission to steal documents behind enemy lines in Benghazi requiring recruits. Major Brand(Curt Jurgens) is an obvious choice, especially considering his experience. Even though Captain Leith(Richard Burton) is very familiar with Libya, Paterson has doubts about him, especially about his being an intellectual...and Welsh. But that doesn't mean Brand and Leith have nothing in common, like say Brand's wife Jane(Ruth Roman). "Bitter Victory" is an offbeat war movie with some interesting casting(Jurgens playing a hero on dry land while Richard Burton is not yet Richard Burton) and very good use of location photography being the main points of interest. While Brand and Leith are outsiders(yes, I know Brand is a white South African but that's a conversation for another time), the movie attempts a psychological portrait of war. The fact that it takes the most cliched approach possible(of all the suicide missions in this war, you had to choose this one...) including a shaky resolution is a huge shame and lost opportunity.

Walter M.
Walter M.

Super Reviewer


one of ray's more neglected films, it's a stunning black and white widescreen character study of the intense struggle between two british officers on a hopeless mission in the libyan desert. i somehow never realized before that richard burton was hot at one point in time

Stella Dallas
Stella Dallas

Super Reviewer

Stark drama of principles in wartime. Excellent performances from the three leads. Ruth Roman's part is small but integral to the plot and she makes the most of it.

jay nixon
jay nixon

Super Reviewer

Bitter Victory Quotes

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