Weekly Movie Rec: 12 Angry Men

Look at me, going all the way back to 1957 and picking a classic movie like 12 Angry Men. Aren’t I just so pretentious?

No, I’m not, as my favorite movies include 300 and The Fast and the Furious, so you can never play that card with me. But I did want to put this suggestion forward today to show that even old films, which many people near my generation may write off as too boring or stiff, can still be absolutely worth your while, and I was amazed by how much of an impression this 50 year old movie left on me when I first watched it.

It’s one of the earlier films of classic director Sidney Lumet who just passed away this year, and practically the entire film takes place inside a jury deliberation room where 12 men gather together to decide the fate of one young black kid accused of murder. All think it’s an open and shut case, save one, and he aims to bring everyone around to his point of view. It’s a masterpiece of human interaction and psychology, and despite it’s singular setting and lack of action, is an exceptional film that you would be wrong to write off because of its age.

Next week, Citizen Kane! Just kidding.

  • Sylkmatic

    Watched it late last year…it truly is a great movie.

  • Jobe

    AMAZING, don’t let the age of movie deter you.

  • Madison

    Saw this movie in my Law Studies class when I was in high school – it’s awesome. I love the juror who just wants to get the hell out of there to see a baseball game.

    But yeah, great pick – this movie rules.

  • Paul

    The kid was Italian, not black

  • Matt

    Echoing all others — great film, wonderful ensemble performance and evocative, incredibly influential camera work. Even before you know what’s going on, the mood is set by the cramped quarters, close shots, and a growing, unsettling tension that boils over in exquisite fashion.

    In my opinion, this is the best movie made pre-1969.

  • xXburekXx

    we read the play and watched this one and the new movie in my grade 10 english class, i agree that most people from current generations right off old movies as boring, me i love them

  • Frothy_Ham

    Once again, I also saw this originally in high school (about 10 years ago) and was blown away. I’ve made a point to watch it at least once a year, purely based on pleasure, because the story, characters and directing are so amazing.

    Kudos to the pick.

  • og bobby j

    remake wasnt terrible either….

  • Diablo

    Great movie…although technically what Henry Fonda’s characters does is completely illegal such as introducing new evidence (his pocket knife) and having the other jurors talk about their own personal experiences vice considering the actual evidence. And then of course assuming that eye witness testimony can be completely ignored under the assumption that the witness must require eye glasses because of the marks on her nose and that there was no way she put on her glass (that she must need) prior to witnessing the killing….er what?!?

    Its a great film…but an utterly terrible depiction of how our justice system is supposed to work.

  • Chris

    Please tell me that the 300 and The Fast and Furious comment was a joke…