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4.5 out of 5 stars68
4.5 out of 5 stars
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'Jodie Foster' delivers a stunning performance as 'Sarah Tobias' a young woman
who lives her life 'her-way'
'Sarah' becomes a victim of a gang-rape at the local bar, 'The Mill' in the games
room at the rear of the bar.
'Sarah' fully expects justice for the unprovoked actions of the three involved in the
attack.
'Attorney' 'Kathryn Murphy' (Kelly McGillis) is assigned to the case.
Trouble is the Attorney cannot find a credible witness even though, in truth, there
were indeed many, 'Kathryn' is determined to back her client to the hilt, however
the system initially lets 'Sarah' down as the level of charges are reduced, the
sentences do not reflect the crime.
'Sarah' cannot put the incident behind her, it seems everybody knows, she is goaded,
frequently.
'Kathryn Murphy' believes the system has sold 'Sarah' short, she decides to pursue
those that had 'Taunted' 'Goaded' 'Cheered and 'Encouraged' the actions of the of
the three rapists,.
Will the system fail 'Sarah' again ?
This time 'Sarah' will take the 'Stand' where she will have to relive the trauma of that
night.
This is a powerful, intense, absorbing and brilliantly portrayed drama, 'Jodie Foster'
remains one of todays finest actresses and fully deserved the 'Oscar'(1989) for best
actress for her role in this '1988' film.
Extra feature - 'Theatrical Trailer'
( Last time I watched this movie was on 'VHS' that was some time ago now even
though I've owned this DVD for several years)
WELL WORTH RE-VISITING
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VINE VOICEon 14 May 2006
This film by Jonathan Kaplan is remarkable and truly captivating. I've seen this film a number of times and it still gets me in the gut. This is deeply moving and extremely gripping.

It tells the story of Sarah Tobias (a magnificent Jodie Foster) who is gang raped in a bar full of people drinking and playing video games. This whole scene was witnessed by a college student who notifies the police from a call box. Soon a District Attorney, Kathryn Murphy (Kelly McGillis), takes up her case with relish and manages to convict the ones that did it. After that, she decides to bring the ones who encouraged the whole rape to justice and with the eventual help of the star witness, Kenneth Joyce (Bernie Coulson), she puts them away for a long time.

What makes this film work on so many levels, is its power to get the viewer involved and to believe in the victim of the case. Also it has a warmth and charm about it. Baring in mind the film deals with the subject of rape, it shows it in a raw, intense and moving way when shown in the courtroom scene.

The main performance of Sarah Tobias is staggeringly played by Jodie Foster who gives the character something to believe in and fight about. The viewer can truly believe in her pain and anguish she's going through. Kelly McGillis and Bernie Coulson give excellent support and the subject is handled brilliantly by the director, Jonathan Kaplan and is quite staggering.

I thought that the score by Brad Fiedel was very moody and atmospheric with refreshing hints of lightness sprinkled in the mix. There are some extremely moving scenes where Sarah is on the phone to her mother when she comes home from the hospital and when Sarah is in her hospital bed when Kathryn visits her that are enhanced by the soft sound of the piano and keyboards of the score. This is one of the best films that I've seen.
11 comment|18 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
This 1988 drama opens with a college student running out of a roadside bar and calling the police to report an assault on a girl, moments later a dishevelled girl runs out of the same bar. So begins the tale of Sarah Tobias (Jodie Foster) as she makes accusations of rape against three men whilst others cheer and goad them on. Enter Kathryn Murphy (Kelly McGillis) as the assistant district attorney assigned to the case. The problem is Sarah has a liberated lifestyle, drinking heavily, using pot, going to bars on her own and lives with her latest boyfriend in an isolated caravan. There is little chance of a conviction so Kathryn plea bargains for a lesser charge [which excludes rape] and the men are given a short sentence. Sarah feels betrayed and eventually Kathryn decides to bring charges of ‘solicitation to rape’ against those that cheered them on and the real film begins.
For a film dealing with a vicious and violent rape, the sex is very low key and until the end we only get the spoken descriptions. This is a great strength of the film as we do not really know the extent of Sarah’ ‘willingness’ as Kathryn is always thrown onto her back foot as Sarah continually hides information, whereas many other films would have turned this into a sexploitation movie. Instead we get a clever and moving film in which Sarah has to prove she’s not the ‘trailer trash’ everyone thinks she is.
This film was one of the first of its genre to deal with rape in a direct manner, and identified onlookers as just as guilty as the perpetrators of the crime. The movie also sparked a massive ’No! means No!” anti rape campaign bringing the crime fully into public view. Excellently acted, this is a definite ***** movie and shouldn’t be missed.
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on 15 September 2013
I don't like what the films entails but the actual story and portrayal of jodie fosters character sarah is excellent also is kelly mcgillis who plays lawyer catherine the story begins with sarah fleeing the mill which is the place where she has been put through a horrific experience being attacked by 3 men and jeering crowd she eventually gets the chance to go to court to tell her story of the attack and ultimately get the guys who jeered brought to justice catherine makes sure of this with her defence the perpitraitors are brought to justice and rightly so (slimebags) but this story is worth watching have the tissues ready can see why jodie foster won an oscar for her performance.
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on 11 June 2004
Jodie Foster won an Oscar for her portrayal of Sarah, a young woman from the wrong side of the tracks, who is gang raped in a bar after a drunken night out. Foster delivers a mesmerising performance as the traumatised victim fighting for justice against a system that has labelled her as 'worthless' due to her previous lifestyle. Kelly McGillis plays the district attorney who initially lets Sarah down and agrees to a plea bargain that Sarah doesn't want. When the realisation hits of what she has done, she fights to ensure the perpetraters of this brutal rape are brought to justice.
This is never an easy film to watch. The crime is too violent and the emotions too raw for that. The audience is left with a feeling of unease at the brutality of the crime and at the judicial system that is supposed to protect the innocent.It is however, a compelling film due to the outstanding performances of the lead actors and it cannot fail to touch and move the most hard hearted of viewer.
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on 30 January 2016
I remember going and seeing this in the cinema and the rape scene was so harrowing... the fact the subject matter was also personal to me in my life, I never thought I should never of watched this, it actually empowered me to also fight for mental and spiritual well-being. I have watched this again over the years and it is a story that can never date, yes laws may have changed but the inner story of just being believed and not being the victim who has brought it on their selves is just as profound and raw as it was nearly 30 years this film was made.
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on 15 February 2014
I have to agree with all the positive reviews on here. This is a fantastic film. Jonathan Kaplan handles the matter well and makes a very well balanced film. It is a complement to the film when I say that you will be yelling at you TV at how stupid some of the characters are. There is not a bad performance to be had and Jodie Foster deserved her Oscar. If the Accused wont touch you nothing will. To conclude if your reading this deciding weather to buy it, please do. It's not a film your going to forget!
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on 4 September 2014
Very graphic in depicting a gang rape, An experience that would make any women feel despicable. Worthless and of no esteem .

Until the victim can analyse what violation has taken place. Then the victim can mull over the indignity and then to fight back in a court of law to bring the assailants to justice. The DVD The Accused does these things showing that justice does prevail . For the stalwarts who choose fight. Nothing sensational, but solid contending argument
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on 20 January 2015
The adult content here is very strong indeed (no need for details), this drama certainly challenges our morality - the setting maybe 'smalltown' America - this could happen anywhere in our world.

The key word here - as said previously - is "challenge", the year this film was made: 1992, of course our world has changed alot since then, no doubt it is an unflinching & powerful drama indeed that is always going to question what justice is all about!.
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on 20 January 2003
Kurosawa's fans do not feel offended if I dare say that somehow this movie can remind of the celebrated masterpiece " Rashomon ", because of the way the same, crude facts ( a woman is raped in a pub ) are presented many times, in a different way, according the points of view of the characters.
Who's really guilty ?
the rapers - mostly rich young men who do not seem really aware of what they did ?
or the woman ( a surprising JF ) - who maybe instigated them with all her winking and sexy dancing ?
or maybe the witness - not bold enough to defend the woman, but just up phoning to the police when it's already too late ?
or even the woman's attorney, who prefers the easy way out - looking for an agreement with the rapers' lawyers instead of insisting for a severe sentence ?
The film's conclusion is surprising, and deeply disturbing: guilty are all those who were there in the pub, and stared, and did nothing. Nothing, besides looking at what was going on, screaming, laughing and incitating.
This is an hard critic to our everyday's lifestyle, when everybody is minding his own affairs but no more, without knowing even who lives one door far , and trying to look elsewhere as " not concerned " if just a beggar gets close to us. " It's not my business " - isn't this perhaps our common attitude ? We prefer look, but at a distance, what somebody else is doing rather than do anything ourselves.

A movie which offers starting points for bitter reflections indeed.
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