The Night Porter

Watch The Night Porter

  • R
  • 1974
  • 1 hr 58 min
  • 6.6  (14,632)

The Night Porter is a provocative and controversial 1974 film directed by Liliana Cavani. The story of the film is set in Vienna and revolves around the relationship between two characters - Lucia (Charlotte Rampling) and Max (Dirk Bogarde). The plot of the film takes place over a span of several years, with frequent flashbacks to the characters' pasts.

The film opens with Lucia, a former concentration camp prisoner who is now married to an American composer, arriving in Vienna on a business trip. While staying at a hotel, she stumbles upon Max, a former SS officer, who is now working as a night porter. The two characters recognize each other from their time at a concentration camp during World War II. As the story unfolds, it becomes clear that Lucia and Max had a sadomasochistic relationship in the camp. Despite the horrific circumstances under which they lived, their bond was real, and it continued to linger over the years.

The Night Porter is a film that delves into the darker aspects of human nature. It deals with themes such as guilt, shame, power dynamics, and the long-term psychological effects of trauma. At its core, the movie is a character study. The two central characters have a complicated history, and their interactions reveal more about themselves than the plot does.

Dirk Bogarde is the standout performer in this film. His portrayal of Max shows a man who is haunted by his past while trying to come to terms with his present. Max is a complex character, and Bogarde expertly navigates the different emotions that he has to convey throughout the film. He does an excellent job of balancing the different aspects of Max's personality - his vulnerability, his brutality, and his need for control.

Charlotte Rampling plays the role of Lucia with equal finesse. Her performance shows a character who is torn between her feelings for Max and her desire to move on from their past. Rampling is at her best in the scenes where her character is conflicted, unable to decide whether to leave Vienna or stay and confront her demons.

The cinematography in this film is worth noting as well. The Night Porter makes ample use of camera angles, lighting, and color to convey the story's themes. The dim lighting in the hotel gives the film an eerie, almost dreamlike quality, and the use of red and black adds to the film's sensuality and violence.

The screenplay of the Night Porter is sparse on details, which can be frustrating at times. The movie's pacing is slow, and there are moments where the characters' motivations are unclear. However, these minor quibbles can be overlooked in light of the film's powerful themes and excellent performances.

The Night Porter is a polarizing film. It is a movie that deals with difficult subject matter and is not for everyone. However, those who are willing to engage with the movie's themes will find a thought-provoking film that stays with them long after the credits roll. It is a testament to the film's power that it still elicits strong reactions today, nearly fifty years after its initial release.

The Night Porter is a 1974 war movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 58 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.6.

The Night Porter
Where to Watch The Night Porter
The Night Porter is available to watch free on Tubi TV. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Amazon Prime, Max, Apple TV and Amazon. Some platforms allow you to rent The Night Porter for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 58 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.6  (14,632)