Let Him Have It
Let Him Have It (1991)

The Derek Bentley Case has been an uneasy blight on the British legal system since the early 1950s. Two young, frightened boys were caught by police trying to break into to a building. One of the boys had a gun. When the policeman reached… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: January 1, 1991
DVD Release Date: August 9, 2010
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Critic Score: 81% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Led by a gripping performance from Christopher Eccleston, Let Him Have It sounds a compelling call for justice on behalf of its real-life protagonist.

Peter Rainer
Los Angeles Times

Courtenay slowly works his way into the center of the movie's sympathies. When he embraces his remaining family at the moment of his son's execution, his sorrow seems boundless.

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Michael Upchurch
Seattle Times

The script, by Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, finds enough quirks in its protagonists to lift them above the issues-movie premise. Michael Kamen's atmospheric chamber score is also crucial to the film's success.

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David Sterritt
Christian Science Monitor

The last 30 minutes of the story are overwhelmingly strong, blending human drama and social history into a series of extremely moving scenes, leading to a brief coda that's as unexpected and audacious as anything seen on a movie screen in years.

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Clifford Terry
Chicago Tribune

As the protagonist/victim, Eccleston gives a superb, riveting performance in his feature-film debut, as does Reynolds, another newcomer who deftly handles the role of the gun-crazy and trigger-happy Chris.

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Mary Makarushka
Entertainment Weekly

A chiaroscuro drama of unstoppable tragedy.

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Stephen Hunter
Baltimore Sun

It's the kind of resonant, controlled and moving film that is all but unmakeable in America today. More's the shame.

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Desmond Ryan
Philadelphia Inquirer

Let Him Have It is unabashedly weighted toward the perspective of the murderer as victim -- a notion that does not enjoy much public currency in our more violent times. But if ever there was a victim of the judicial system, it was Derek Bentley.

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Jay Boyar
Orlando Sentinel

Fairness isn't the issue here, dramatic depth is: You don't have to favor capital punishment to feel yourself being manipulated.

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Phillipa Bloom
Empire Magazine

Let Him Have It is strongest in the human interest department and weakest as a thriller.

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More reviews for Let Him Have It

Flixster Audience Score: 86% Flixster User Reviews
familiar stranger
Quite a strong movie, based on a true story, highlighting miscarriage of justice.
Randy Tippy
Well made, dramatic case study of the crime, trial and subsequent execution of Derek Bentley. Director Peter Medak and a very talented cast have put together a… More
xGary Xx
Intelligent drama in which a mentally challenged petty criminal is railroaded onto the gallows, causing the establishment to re-evaluate it's use of the… More