Love Is the Devil: Study for a Portrait of Francis Bacon (1998)

Unrated  |   |  Biography, Drama  |  7 October 1998 (USA)
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Biography of British painter Francis Bacon focuses on his relationship with his lover, George Dyer, a former small time crook.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Isabel Rawsthorne
Daniel Farson
John Deakin
Annabel Brooks ...
Henrietta Moraes
Richard Newbould ...
Blonde Billy (as Richard Newbold)
Ariel de Ravenel ...
French Official
Tallulah ...
Ian Board
Andy Linden ...
Ken Bidwell
Joe Furneval
Gary Hume ...
Volker Dix
Brighton Rent Boy
Brighton Rent Boy


In the 1960s, British painter Francis Bacon (1909-1992) surprises a burglar and invites him to share his bed. The burglar, a working class man named George Dyer, 30 years Bacon's junior, accepts. Bacon finds Dyer's amorality and innocence attractive, introducing him to his Soho pals. In their sex life, Dyer dominates, Bacon is the masochist. Dyer's bouts with depression, his drinking and pill popping, and his satanic nightmares strain the relationship, as does his pain with Bacon's casual infidelities. Bacon paints, talks with wit, and, as Dyer spins out of control, begins to find him tiresome. Could Bacon care less? Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Study for a portrait of Francis Bacon.


Biography | Drama


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Release Date:

7 October 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Love Is the Devil: Study for a Portrait of Francis Bacon  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£46,077 (UK) (18 September 1998)


$343,023 (USA) (17 December 1999)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Malcolm McDowell was once interest for the part of Francis Bacon. See more »


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User Reviews

The Painting's The Thing...
14 October 2005 | by (silverlake, ca, usa) – See all my reviews

"Love Is The Devil" stirs me to scope out James Bond now, Daniel Craig's an exciting choice I must say: content over celebrity.

In response to the viewer who complained about the dislocated scenes that may or may not be relevant to the whole, the distorted lens... this is a film about a real painter. What is so brilliant about this work, is that they found a way to visually bring Bacon's paintings to life - they are exploring the man, the life, the love through the filter of his own paintings. Audacious attempt. Expertly Accomplished. One of the few films about painting that honestly pays true homage to the art form. This is not a suburban film about a painter - and who he was and what happened to him and what he did - rather... This Is A Painter's Film. There are graceful, indelible moments here that have scraped a little unused previously untouched part of my brain I did not know was there and scarred and these irrelevant vivid images, these haunting shots that only exist to soar and be seen without a net of linear context have affixed themselves into my memory to reappear at whim and always make me gasp. and clamor to savor, they slip away again. and the world, oh yea, here. That last amazing scene I'm trying so hard not to copy in my own creations, but - that - last - amazing - scene - seems - stronger - than - my - own - will -

21 of 30 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Bacon was not British ghf23
Is this film accurate to Bacon's real life? onefineday36
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Francis Bacon of today, would be sad I think..... amgorman

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