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109 Ratings

The Dresser

Directed by Peter Yates
United Kingdom, 1983


In a touring Shakespearean theatre group, a backstage hand – the dresser, is devoted to the brilliant but tyrannical head of the company. He struggles to support the deteriorating star as the company struggles to carry on during the London blitz. The pathos of his backstage efforts rival the pathos

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The Dresser Directed by Peter Yates

Awards & Festivals

Berlin International Film Festival

1984 | 3 wins including: Best Actor

Academy Awards

1984 | 5 nominations including: Best Picture

National Board of Review

1983 | Winner: Top Ten Films

BAFTA Awards

1985 | 7 nominations including: Best Actor

Critics reviews

I’m sorry to report that The Dresser has none of the small-scale virtues of the other two films, unless one counts the quiet detailing of the period atmosphere of wartime England—which is virtually the only thing about the film that’s quiet, as The Dresser exudes the sort of boilerplate bombast that garners more Oscar nominations than intimations of anyone’s life as it is plausibly lived, even inside a Shakespearean touring company.
June 23, 2015
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