Saturday, November 20, 2010

12 Angry Men

Last post, I opined on the latest retelling of Clash of the Titans.

Today, at the library (where I find the majority of my DVD's), I found 12 Angry Men. The original version, starring Henry Fonda.

Also starring E.G. Marshall, Ed Begley (Senior), a VERY young Jack Klugman (you may remember him as Qunicy M.E., the original CSI), and other actors that no one remembers.

This movie was shot 99% in a single room, on a budget of $350,000 1957 dollars (I'll let you try to find out how much that is today). There are also no female actors credited in this movie, although in the opening credits you can hear and see a crying woman who is uncredited.

This movie was also based on a play originally written for television. It's been performed as a play all over this country. I'm not ashamed to admit that I performed a bit part in a local amateur production of it (as the Jury Room guard, who has maybe 4 lines in the play. I got this part because I was able to obtain a local Sheriff's uniform at no cost).

But I digress. My point is that this movie, which was nominated for at least 3 Academy Awards, was shot on a shoestring budget, with only one "big name" actor, with almost no special effects (a thunderstorm occurs about halfway through the movie), managed to be a major box office hit, one that is still watched today. The President's first nominee to the Supreme Court cited this movie as the inspiration for her entry into the legal system.

Ask yourselves if the same thing will still be said 50 years after the latest release of Clash of the Titans.

I seriously doubt it.

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