The Verdict

The Verdict

If you enjoy Paul Newman (and who doesn’t enjoy Paul Newman) you need to see this movie. He probably could have won Best Actor but lost out to Ben Kingsly for Gandhi. Newman plays an alcoholic lawyer who drums up his business by going to funeral homes and passing out business cards, claiming to know the deceased. That is until he is handed a sure thing, a case that is supposed to settle out of court with a nice payday. Having a growing conscious after seeing the victim, he views the money as nothing more than being bought off and decides to fight the case.

As always, not to give too much away, this isn’t the absolute best courtroom drama I have ever seen, but Sidney Lumet (12 Angry Men, Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead) does get great performances from Mr. Newman, James Mason, and Charlotte Rampling (Swimming Pool). There are no huge plot twists or legal loopholes that act as a payoff here, just tracking down missing witnesses and courtroom testimony. Still, this is a film worth seeing, being Nominated for 5 total Oscars including Best Actor and Best Picture.

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