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12 Angry Men is a 1997 American made-for-television drama film directed by William Friedkin, adapted by Reginald Rose from his original teleplay of the same title. It is a remake of the 1957 film.

12 Angry Men
12 Angry Men 1997 film poster.jpg
DVD cover
GenreDrama
Based onTwelve Angry Men
Written byReginald Rose
Directed byWilliam Friedkin
StarringCourtney B. Vance
Ossie Davis
George C. Scott
Armin Mueller-Stahl
Dorian Harewood
James Gandolfini
Tony Danza
Jack Lemmon
Hume Cronyn
Mykelti Williamson
Edward James Olmos
William Petersen
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
Production
Producer(s)Terence A. Donnelly
Production location(s)Raleigh Studios - 5300 Melrose Avenue, Hollywood, Los Angeles
D.C. Stages, 1360 East 6th Street, Downtown, Los Angeles
CinematographyFred Schuler
Editor(s)Augie Hess
Running time117 minutes
Production company(s)MGM Television
DistributorShowtime Networks
Budget$1.75 million[1]
Release
Original networkMGM Television
Picture formatColor (Technicolor)
Audio formatDolby SR
Original releaseAugust 17, 1997

Contents

PlotEdit

In the murder trial of a teenaged boy from a city slum, accused of murdering his father, the judge gives her instructions to the jury: a non-unanimous verdict will force a mistrial, and a guilty verdict will be accompanied by a mandatory death sentence. The jury of twelve retires to the jury room.

An initial vote is taken and eleven jurors vote for conviction. Juror 8, the lone dissenter, states that the evidence is circumstantial and the boy deserves a fair deliberation. He questions the testimony of the two witnesses, and the fact that the switchblade used in the murder is not as unusual as the testimony indicates, producing an identical knife from his pocket.

Juror 8 proposes another vote by secret ballot – if the other jurors vote guilty unanimously, he will acquiesce, but if at least one votes "not guilty" they will continue deliberating. Only Juror 9 changes his vote, respecting Juror 8’s motives and feeling his points deserve further discussion.

After deliberating whether one witness actually heard the murder take place, Juror 5, who grew up in a slum, changes his vote. Juror 11, questioning whether the defendant would have fled the scene and returned three hours later to retrieve his knife, also changes his vote. Jurors 2 and 6 also vote "not guilty", tying the verdict at 6-6, when Juror 8 demonstrates the unlikelihood that one witness actually saw the boy flee the scene. The remaining jurors are intrigued when Juror 11 proves that although a psychiatric test stated that the boy had subconscious desires to kill, such tests only offer possible actions. Juror 7, impatient to attend a baseball game that night, changes his vote but is chastised by the others. When pressed by Juror 11, Juror 7 claims, unconvincingly, that he believes the defendant is not guilty.

Jurors 12 and 1 change their votes, leaving the only dissenters: Jurors 3, 4, and 10. Outraged at the proceedings, Juror 10 goes on a bigoted diatribe against Hispanic immigrants "outbreeding" African-Americans. He attempts to leverage this with the other African-American jurors, offending the rest of the jury, and Juror 4 finally cuts him off: "Sit down. And don't open your filthy mouth again."

Juror 4 states that despite all the other evidence called into question, the testimony of the woman who saw the murder from across the street stands as solid evidence. Juror 12 changes his vote back to "guilty", making the vote 8-4 again. Juror 9, seeing Juror 4 rub his nose, irritated by his glasses, realizes that the witness had impressions on her nose, indicating that she wore glasses and likely was not wearing them when she saw the murder. Jurors 12 and 4 change their vote to "not guilty". Juror 10, who says he still thinks the defendant is guilty, bluntly admits to no longer caring about the verdict and votes for acquittal.

Undeterred, Juror 3 is forced to present his arguments again, and goes on a tirade, presenting the evidence in haphazard fashion and concluding with his disbelief that a son would kill his own father – mirroring his previous comments about his bad relationship with his own son. He begins to weep, and says he can feel the knife being plunged into his chest. Juror 8 gently points out that the boy is not his son, and Juror 4 pats his arm and says: "Let him live." Juror 3 gives in, and the final vote is unanimous for acquittal.

The jurors leave and the defendant is found not guilty off-screen, while Juror 8 helps the distraught Juror 3 with his coat. In an epilogue, the friendly Jurors 8 (Davis) and 9 (McCardle) exchange names and part ways as Juror 3 walks slowly alone.

CastEdit

The JurorsEdit

  • The Foreman/Juror #1 (Courtney B. Vance): A high school football coach who tries to keep order in the hostile jury room.
  • Juror #2 (Ossie Davis): A meek bank teller who initially does not know what to make of the case.
  • Juror #3 (George C. Scott): A businessman with a hot temper. He has a strained relationship with his son, and is convinced that the defendant is guilty.
  • Juror #4 (Armin Mueller-Stahl): A stockbroker; he is very eloquent and looks at the case through facts and not bias.
  • Juror #5 (Dorian Harewood): A health care worker (possibly an EMT); he is from the Harlem slums.
  • Juror #6 (James Gandolfini): A house painter, patient and respectful of what other people have to say.
  • Juror #7 (Tony Danza): A salesman; unconcerned with the trial, he is impatient, rude, and wise-cracking.
  • Juror #8 (Jack Lemmon): An architect who has two children. He is the only juror to originally vote not guilty. His real name is Davis.
  • Juror #9 (Hume Cronyn): A wise older man who sides with Juror 8. His real name is McCardle.
  • Juror #10 (Mykelti Williamson): A carwash owner and former member of the Nation of Islam, he is a loudmouth, narrow-minded bigot.
  • Juror #11 (Edward James Olmos): An immigrant watchmaker, he is observant and believes in the American justice system.
  • Juror #12 (William Petersen): An ad executive; he is easily swayed by others' opinions, and does not have a full understanding of the life at stake.

Other CastEdit

Awards and nominationsEdit

See alsoEdit

BibliographyEdit

  • Friedkin, William, The Friedkin Connection, Harper Collins 2013

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ The Friedkin Connection (Harper Collins, 2013), p 415

External linksEdit