Let Him Have It

Watch Let Him Have It

"The shocking story of an unbelievable miscarriage of justice."
  • R
  • 1991
  • 1 hr 55 min
  • 7.2  (3,766)

Based on true events, "Let Him Have It" is a powerful and thought-provoking drama that tells the story of the infamous Derek Bentley case, a landmark in British legal history. Set in the late 1950s, this tense and emotional film explores themes of justice, accountability, and morality and asks the difficult question: should a man be hanged for a crime he did not commit?

The film begins in a working-class neighborhood in London, where we are introduced to Derek Bentley (Christopher Eccleston), a simple-minded young man with epilepsy and learning difficulties. Derek's life is a struggle, filled with poverty, bullying, and frustration. Despite his difficulties, he has a deep love for his family, particularly his younger sister, Iris (Tracey Wilkinson), with whom he shares a strong bond.

One day, while hanging out with his friends, Derek is introduced to a notorious local thief, Christopher Craig (Paul Reynolds), who impresses the young man with his daring and charisma. Eager to please his new friend, Derek joins Craig on a series of burglaries, hoping to make some quick money and gain respect.

As Derek and Craig's crimes escalate, the police begin to close in on them. One fateful night, they break into a warehouse, only to be confronted by the authorities. A violent standoff ensues, during which Craig shoots and kills a police officer. The two boys are apprehended and put on trial for murder.

The majority of the film revolves around the trial, in which Derek's fate hangs in the balance. The prosecution argues that he was a willing accomplice to Craig's crime, and therefore guilty of murder. However, Derek's defence team, led by the passionate and determined David Maxwell Fyfe (Tom Courtenay), argues that Derek was not in his right mind during the incident, and that Craig was the true mastermind behind the crime.

As the trial progresses, tensions run high both in the courtroom and outside of it. The media circus surrounding the case causes divisions in the community, with some people arguing that Derek deserves to hang, while others believe he is innocent. Meanwhile, Derek's family and friends struggle to cope with the stress and uncertainty of the situation, and begin to question the fairness of the legal system.

The performances in "Let Him Have It" are exceptional, particularly those of Eccleston and Courtenay. Eccleston portrays Derek with heartbreaking vulnerability and sincerity, earning the viewer's sympathy and empathy throughout. Courtenay is equally compelling as Fyfe, providing a powerful counterpoint to the prosecution's case and passionately arguing for Derek's life.

The film also benefits from its excellent direction and cinematography. Director Peter Medak creates a moody and tense atmosphere, using shadows and light to great effect. The camera work is tight and intense, simulating the feeling of being trapped in the courtroom with the characters.

Overall, "Let Him Have It" is a gripping and emotional drama that raises important questions about justice and accountability. It is a must-watch for fans of true crime stories and courtroom dramas, and a powerful reminder of the consequences of the legal system's flaws.

Let Him Have It is a 1991 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 55 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.2.

Let Him Have It
Where to Watch Let Him Have It
Let Him Have It is available to watch free on Kanopy. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Let Him Have It for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 55 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.2  (3,766)