Defence of the Realm (Defense of the Realm) (1985) - Rotten Tomatoes

Defence of the Realm (Defense of the Realm)1985

Defence of the Realm (Defense of the Realm) (1985)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Defence of the Realm (Defense of the Realm) Photos

Movie Info

This fast-paced thriller examines the amorality of a nation's secret services and the responsibility of journalistic investigations in an era of nuclear tensions and bureaucratic deceit. The film examines an unspooling series of events occurring after a near crash of a nuclear bomber at an American Air Force base in the English countryside. When Dennis Markham (Ian Bannen), a well-respected member of Parliament, is reported by a London paper to have been seen leaving a woman's home, and the woman is found to also be familiar with a dignitary from East Germany, his loyalty to his country is questioned, and he is forced to resign. The author of the newspaper exposé, Nick Mullen (Gabriel Byrne), continues his investigation with his colleague Vernon Bayliss (Denholm Elliott). But when Vernon dies from a mysterious heart attack, Mullen suspects something deeper at work and finds evidence of a complex web of deceit concerning a secret Air Force base. With the help of Vernon's secretary, Nina Beckman (Greta Scacchi), Nick fights the dark forces in order to bring the truth to light.

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Gabriel Byrne
as Nicholas 'Nick' Mullen
Denholm Elliott
as Vernon Bayliss
Greta Scacchi
as Nina Beckman
Ian Bannen
as Dennis Markham
Fulton Mackay
as Victor Kingsbrook
Bill Paterson
as Jack Macleod
David Calder
as Harry Champion
Frederick Treves
as Arnold Reece
Robbie Coltrane
as Leo McAskey
Annabel Leventon
as Trudy Markham
Prentis Hancock
as Frank Longman
Michael Johnson
as Humphrey Channing
Mark Tandy
as Philip Henderson
Daniel Webb
as Danny Royce
Oliver Ford Davies
as Anthony Clegg
Daniel Benzali
as Lt. Col. Lehane
Steven Woodcock
as Steve Dyce
Harriet Bagnall
as Peace Girl
John Challis
as Challis
Alexei Jawdokimov
as Dietrich Kleist
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Critic Reviews for Defence of the Realm (Defense of the Realm)

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (1)

The acting is strong throughout, but Elliott is especially effective. What is it about this actor, who has been in so many different kinds of movies and seems to make each role special?

January 1, 2000 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Mostly pleasing old-fashioned political thriller.

October 5, 2011 | Rating: B | Full Review…

There are marvelous performances by several British character actors, especially Denholm Elliott and Ian Bannen, and feelings of nerve-racking paranoia are evoked as a reporter, played by Gabriel Byrne, uncovers unexpected motives while investigating a Ca

June 14, 2007 | Rating: 4/5

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