12 Angry Men Review by Sputnik

A jury of 12 men must decide the fate of an 18-year-old boy accused of fatally stabbing his father. But only one juror wants to take the time to deliberate the case on the basis of reasonable doubt while the others want to return a verdict of guilty and go home.

The movie was adapted from a teleplay of the same name by Reginald Rose. Almost the entire movie takes place in the jury room with the jurors arguing over whether the boy is guilty or not. This 1957 Black & White Classic is still engrossing and underscores the point that someone cannot be held guilty if there is reasonable doubt. It was nominated for three Oscars – Best Picture, Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay.

Had recommended the movie in my post on Best Hollywood Courtroom Dramas. The Hindi movie Ek Ruka Hua Faisla directed by Basu Chatterjee was a scene to scene dialogue to dialogue copy of 12 Angry Men. Had made a post on Ek Ruka Hua Faisla Inspired/Copied from 12 Angry Men with scenes from 12 Angry Men and the entire movie Ek Ruka Hua Faisla.

Henry Fonda is excellent as Davis, the Juror who is initially the only one to vote not guilty. Lee J. Cobb is excellent as the Juror who thinks the boy is guilty because of his own issues with his son. E. G. Marshall is very good as the calm, rational juror. Jack Klugman is very good as the juror who grew up in a slum. Edward Binns is good as the tough but principled juror. Jack Warden is good as the uninterested juror who wants to just go to the baseball game. Joseph Sweeney is very good as the wise, old, observant juror. Ed Begley is very good as the bigoted juror. George Voskovec is very good as the recently naturalized juror. Robert Webber is good as the indecisive juror who works in advertising. Martin Balsam is good as the Jury foreman.

12 Angry Men was the directorial debut of Sidney Lumet and his direction is excellent. There is not a single unnecessary scene in the movie. 12 Angry Men is one of the Best Hollywood Courtroom Dramas ever and one of the best movies ever made.

Highly Recommended

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