Well-made Kafkaesque story with undertones of 1984. Although THE REVOLUTIONARY was shot in London, its locale is never specified, and most of the lead actors are American. Voight is a radical student who feels that he has been betrayed by the political group to which he belongs because
they are establishing a policy of cooperation while he thinks more violent actions must be taken in order to alter the system. Voight and his lover, Wilcox-Horne, quit the student organization and join forces with Duvall, a tough factory worker who leads a local communist group. In his new role,
Voight becomes part of a general strike, which the authorities seek to quell. Once Voight is known to be a leader, he is forced to seek a hiding place to avoid being arrested for his activities. When he receives a draft notice, he goes into the service, then learns that his first assignment is to
squash the very strike he helped organize. Rather than battle against his political beliefs, Voight goes AWOL and stays with Salt, an attractive woman he'd met earlier who is somewhat sympathetic to him, if not his cause. With Duvall's group under surveillance and soft-pedaling themselves to avoid
arrest, Voight decides that he must move on. He becomes involved with Cassel, an extremist who wants to kill Reginald Cornish to punish the judge for his anti-labor rulings. Cassel plans to place a bomb in the courtroom, and Voight's job is to set off a second explosive if the first one is a dud.
Cornish sentences some of the workers to jail for their activities, Cassel's bomb doesn't go off, and Voight is left holding the second bomb as he stands in front of Cornish. Although full of ideas, THE REVOLUTIONARY doesn't stop to cram them down our throats. Instead, the film moves at a quick
clip while still managing to provide insights into Voight's carefully drawn character.
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- Rating: GP
- Review: Well-made Kafkaesque story with undertones of 1984. Although THE REVOLUTIONARY was shot in London, its locale is never specified, and most of the lead actors are American. Voight is a radical student who feels that he has been betrayed by the political gro… (more)