Il portiere di notte (The Night Porter)
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Il portiere di notte (The Night Porter)
A sexual relationship based more on pain than pleasure becomes a metaphor for the post-war era in this controversial drama. Max (Dirk Bogarde) was an officer at a Nazi concentration camp during WWII, but in 1958 he's a porter at a luxury hotel in Vienna, where many of his guests are war criminals like himself, and he's involved in a sadomasochistic relationship with the owner. Max and his fellow fugitives believe that most of the witnesses to their crimes have been silenced, but one night Max sees Lucia (Charlotte Rampling) checking into the hotel with her husband. Lucia was an inmate… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 67%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"A strange, brooding tale."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"The movie's visual virtues are negated by infinite absurdities -- particularly by the sentimentality with which the director views this luckless couple."
‑ Nora Sayre, New York Times
"Not rich in plausability of plot or character development, but tonally interesting in places."
‑ Kim Newman, Empire Magazine
"It retains a certain importance -- as much for understanding the history of film as for its intrinsic merits."
‑ Ken Hanke, Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
"A compelling and disturbing testament to the enduring power of evil and the complexity of human nature."
‑ Sam Jordison, Film4
"With a little application and imagination I suppose one might read themes of political and philosophical import into this work, but Cavani's style remains stupidly literal and gaga."
‑ Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
"The Night Porter is as nasty as it is lubricious, a despicable attempt to titillate us by exploiting memories of persecution and suffering."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"People can read artistic significance into anything and lots of people have read gobs of it into this, but it is a silly movie with lots of perverse sex and no redeeming values, artistic or otherwise."
‑ Douglas Pratt, DVDLaser
"Groundbreaking might not be the right word, but it's certainly the right sentiment."
‑ Christopher Null,
"This undignified film couldn't quite get past all the sleaze it dredged up."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"Somewhere along the way, the film's handling of serious themes, and its attempts to examine the Nazi legacy in terms of repression and guilt, both sexual and political, get lost amid all the self-conscious decadence."
‑ , Time Out
"Morbidly fascinating work, choreographed from within a vacuum devoid of feeling and retribution, and spearheaded by a director who must find some sadistic pleasure in being such an exacting provocateur."
‑ David Keyes,
"A strange and unforgettable picture that questions deeply the psyches of torturers and the tortured."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"A estranha relação entre o casal de protagonistas transforma o filme em uma experiência nada agradável - o que não quer dizer que ele não mereça ser admirado como belo estudo de personagens e por revelar sombras assustadoras da natureza humana."
‑ Pablo Villaca, Cinema em Cena
More reviews for Il portiere di notte (The Night Porter) on Rotten Tomatoes