Thursday, May 04, 2006

Courtroom Movies

Not sure what triggered this one but here are a few of my favorite trial films.

Breaker Morant (1980) is the true story of the trial and execution of three Australian soldiers during the Second Boer War in 1902.
Read more about Harry 'Breaker' Harbord Morant here.

Anatomy of a Murder (1959) directed by Otto Preminger, this story is about an army lieutenant accused of murdering the man who raped his wife. Jimmy Stewart plays the lawyer for the defense.

12 Angry Men (1957) stars Henry Fonda as 1 of 12 jurors who doesn't think the murder trial they are sitting on is as cut and dried as the other 11 think it is and slowly works to win them over.

...And Justice for All (1979) with Al Pacino as the lawyer who is trying to do the right thing and gets blackmailed into defending a judge that he despises. Jack Warden plays a lunatic judge with a death wish.

The Verdict (1982) Paul Newman as an alcoholic ambulance chaser who gets a chance to redeem himself against all odds.

And my favorite courtroom movie of all time...

To Kill a Mockingbird (1962) Gregory Peck stars as Atticus Finch, a lawyer in the Depression-era South, defending a black man against an undeserved rape charge and his kids against prejudice. The Pulitzer Prize winning novel by Harper Lee about her life was required reading for me in school. She turned 80 last Friday. If you have some extra cash, you might want to pick up a first edition here.


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