The death of a young man leads to the discovery of a blackmail plot against a number of gay men in 1960s London.

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Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Melville Farr
...
Laura
...
Calloway
...
Lord Fullbrook
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Paul Mandrake
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Harold Doe
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Barrett
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Eddy
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Sandy Youth
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Det.Inspector Harris
John Cairney ...
Bridie
Alan MacNaughtan ...
Scott Hankin
...
Phip
Frank Pettitt ...
Barman (as Frank Pettit)
Mavis Villiers ...
Madge
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Storyline

A plea for reform of England's anti-sodomy statutes, this film pits Melville Farr, a married lawyer, against a blackmailer who has photos of Farr and a young gay man (who is being blackmailed and later commits suicide) in Farr's car. After the suicide, Farr tracks down other gay men being extorted for money by the same blackmailer. The well-educated police Detective Inspector Harris considers the sodomy law nothing more than an aid to blackmailers, and helps Farr in calling his blackmailer's bluff. The movie, far ahead of its time, ends with Farr and his wife coming to terms with his homosexuality after the public exposure he faces in the blackmailer's trial. Written by Mike Mills <mills@colorado.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A Daring Picture About the World's Most Un-talked About Subject. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

11 October 1961 (Denmark)  »

Also Known As:

Teufelskreis  »

Box Office

Budget:

£153,756 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (pre-censored) | (video)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The famous scene where Melville Farr (having been confronted by his wife about Barrett) finally admits to her that he "wanted him", was added at Dirk Bogarde's request and was partially written by him. Bogarde states in his autobiography that he felt the screenplay lacked credibility because it was too ambiguous and did not adequately explain Farr's involvement with Barrett, and skirted around the issue. See more »

Goofs

Camera shadow on the back of a patron as Barrett exits the phone/toilet room. See more »

Quotes

Detective Inspector Harris: Someone once called this law against homosexuality the blackmailer's charter.
Melville Farr: Is that how you feel about it?
Detective Inspector Harris: I'm a policeman, sir. I don't have feelings.
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Soundtracks

Long Stringy Baby
(uncredited)
Written by Trevor Peacock
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User Reviews

 
Drama Holds Up Well
28 March 1999 | by (Cleveland, Ohio USA) – See all my reviews

When first released in 1961 "Victim" was considered a bold comment on a then hushed-up subject. Looking at the film today, the work is still a forceful, frank account of British societal mores, firmly backed up by laws. While attitudes and behaviors have changed regarding alternative lifestyles, this drama powerfully documents conditions as they existed for many years in England. Sir Dirk Bogarde, one of Britain's most distinguished actors, adorns this presentation with his unique charismatic presence and skill. Ably supported by a strong cast, Bogarde subtly delineates a respected lawyer risking both his professional standing and his marriage by confronting hard-line blackmailers. A taut screenplay and tight direction enhance this thriller.


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