|THIS IS A READ-ONLY ARCHIVE FROM THE SORABJI.COM MESSAGE BOARDS (1995-2016).|
Plus, okay, we gots here Montgomery Clift (oh, how I love that man)
and Burt Lancaster (who mostly just sits there in the movie and yet somehow conveys whole volumes with that impassive silence...so brilliant)
and Spencer Tracy (all rolly and grandfatherish)
and Maximilian Schell (damn, can that man act! daaammnn!!)
and Judy Garland (what?! yes, and with a German accent, no less, and looking nicely aged and vulnerable and trembly)
and Marlene Dietrich (as cool as she ever was)
Then we have some very interesting, very effective cinematography. The camera is constantly sweeping over the courtroom, highlighting certain characters' reactions / lack of reactions in quite a subtle way. Like, the camera would appear to just happen to sweep behind B. Lancaster's head at certain moments, and then keep moving, making us think about him at certain times without really making us KNOW that we were thinking about him. Neat-o, I say.
Plus, the German-English language barrier was dealt with quite nicely. We have at first all the Germans speaking German, with the aid of a translator. Then in one shot we have M. Schell speaking German and sudden close-up and he continues in English and then it's English till the end. Very nicely done.
Then, back to B. Lancaster...when you first see the movie and first see him, you think he's feeling one thing. then you get to the end and learn he was feeling something else entirely. then you watch the movie again and marvel at the man's fabulicious acting ability, such that he was able to convey two polar-opposite emotions at the very same time.
Then you have the little things that only I like, like the patronizing smirk M. Schell (defense attorney) gives Richard Widmark (prosecuting attorney) when Schell's objection is overruled. Or M. Clift's slow-witted smile.
God, I love this movie.