Dear lord, not one of these ancient movies, the story may be alright but the dialogue and other shit will probably be something outdated and naive, not to mention the acting… Sure, there are movies like this, but 12 Angry Men is most certainly not one of them. As I already mentioned there comes a time in every person’s life when he is intrigued by the unusually high rating on IMDb (probably those ancient users voting) and the lack of any quality in recent movies. This is the hubris of men; we think that something that was made over half of a century ago is somehow not relevant. Add to that the style we are now accustomed to and you got yourself me a couple of years ago. Directed by Sidney Lumet (Serpico, Murder on the Orient Express, Dog Day Afternoon…) this movie will be up to date as long as the American judiciary system exists. Not only that, but it hits all the good tags: Closed Environment Movies, Noir Movies and Real Time Flow Movies.
It is the year of our lord Satan 1957, and defense along with prosecution just finished presenting their case to the twelve jurors in a New York courthouse. The case is about a young ethnic 18-year old who is accused of killing his father. The jury withdraws into the room for deliberations, eager to participate and give their verdict.
First of all, this movie is really short with a runtime of about 90 minutes, so this makes for a perfect argument for watching. Come on, you know it’s going to be good. Secondly, to make a movie that takes place in one room with twelve people, and nothing else is quite a difficult feat to accomplish. To get the right camera angles, pacing, breaks, turmoils, and other important shit is nearly impossible. And this is the reason why this movie is usually in any list involving the best movies ever made. The writer and director, along with producer Henry Fonda used the jury as a lens to illuminate our society in general, some of the social systems that we use as nations and finally the people that we live with. Us. Perhaps you will even recognize someone who you know in random rants that sound so current that I eventually began to wonder have we achieved anything, 65 years later…
P.S. The answer is no, we have not achieved anything when it comes to social constructs, we are still living the second age of man, The Tribal Age.
Director: Sidney Lumet
Writer: Reginald Rose
Cast: Henry Fonda, Ed Begley, Lee J. Cobb, E.G. Marshall, Jack Warden, Edward Binns
Fun Facts: At the beginning of the film, the cameras are all positioned above eye level and mounted with wide-angle lenses to give the appearance of greater distance between the subjects. As the film progresses the cameras slip down to eye level. By the end of the film, nearly all of it is shot below eye level, in close-up and with telephoto lenses to increase the encroaching sense of claustrophobia.