I just saw this movie again recently and I must say it was a pleasure to view it again. It reminded me of why people started making movies in the first place and why I myself fell in love with the art of filmmaking. This movie by todays' standards would be considered weak because it has no special effects. This review is even going to ask me about the special effects which makes me think we've become too involved in special effects and forgotten the true art of acting and storytelling. I love this movie because it moves me to the point that I love seeing people able to express themselves and go back to acting being a true art.
Recommend this product?
This film is very simple, it is set in a single room as a jury decides on the fate of a young man accused of murder. In a time like today, court room battles have become center stage in what we like to watch during our news programs. Many of us follow closely along to the debate between lawyers and witnesses yet we fail to get a feel of what it means to be a jury member. With alot of debate going on whether or not our judicial system really works, this film will remind us of how great it really is and how much of a previlege we really have of being part of a jury. The film made in 1957 and directed by the great Sidney Lumet shows in great detail, the ideas and words going on inside a jury room as they decide the fate of a young man. Lumet directs each character in such a way that each of the 12 jurors become fixed in your head and make an impression on you. Each have their own personality and gestures that make all 12 complete characters. Sidney Lumet actually had the actors all stay in this same room for hours and do their lines over and over without taping it, just so each one of them would get a feel of what it would be like.
One juror of course is the main one, and that is played by Henry Fonda. Watching him act reminds us of why the Fonda's have become such a household name in today's world. He acts with charisma and truth as he is the only one of the jurors that believes the boy is innocent. During this time he comes up with reasons and facts on why he believes the boy is really innocent. As for the other actors, some will be recognizable, other won't be, but you will remember each of them after this film. I still have the face of the old man in the film. His performance was simple yet memorable. Unfortunately, he died soon after the film was released. He never made another film after this, and he has started in 1918. I'm sure with this performance he hoped others would keep making great films that are about passion and great acting.
Go out and see this film, and you will remember what true acting and expression are all about.