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To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)

Not Rated  |   |  Drama  |  16 March 1963 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.4/10 from 196,772 users  
Reviews: 451 user | 120 critic

Atticus Finch, a lawyer in the Depression-era South, defends a black man against an undeserved rape charge, and his kids against prejudice.



(based on her novel "To Kill a Mockingbird"), (screenplay)
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Top Rated Movies #83 | Won 3 Oscars. Another 10 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
John Megna ...
Estelle Evans ...
Mayella Violet Ewell (as Collin Wilcox)
James Anderson ...
Mr. Gilmer - Prosecutor
Crahan Denton ...
Walter Cunningham Sr.
Nathan Radley


Based on Harper Lee's Pulitzer Prize winning book of 1961. Atticus Finch is a lawyer in the fictional town of Maycomb, Alabama a racially divided Alabama town, set in the early 1930s, and modeled after Monroeville where Harper Lee grew up. Finch agrees to defend a young black man who is accused of raping a white woman. Many of the townspeople try to get Atticus to pull out of the trial, but he decides to go ahead. How will the trial turn out - and will it effect any changes in racial attitudes in Maycomb? Written by Brian Daly <bd64kcmo@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


If you have read the novel, you will relive every treasured moment. . .If not, a deeply moving experience awaits you! See more »




Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

16 March 1963 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Matar a un ruiseñor  »

Box Office


$2,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Robert Mulligan's way of handling his child actors was to let them play together while keeping the cameras as unobtrusive as possible. See more »


At the end of the movie Scout reminds us of the gifts Boo Radley has given them over the years, including "a broken watch and chain." However, during the opening credits, the watch face looks intact and the watch is ticking loudly. See more »


Scout: I said, 'Hey,' Mr. Cunningham. How's your entailment getting along?
[He turns and looks away]
Scout: Don't you remember me, Mr. Cunningham? I'm Jean Louise Finch. You brought us some hickory nuts one early morning, remember? We had a talk. I went and got my daddy to come out and thank you. I go to school with your boy. I go to school with Walter; he's a nice boy. Tell him 'hey' for me, won't you? You know something, Mr. Cunningham, entailments are bad. Entailments...
See more »

Crazy Credits

The title is revealed in a child's crayon rubbing. See more »


Referenced in Get Smart: Tequila Mockingbird (1969) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

One of the most important films of all time
9 November 2003 | by (Milwaukee, WI) – See all my reviews

To Kill a Mockingbird is the movie based on the Harper Lee novel of the same name about Scout, Jem and their father, Atticus Finch who is an attorney in a small southern town. It is both a coming of age story about the children as well as a hard-hitting drama, as Atticus defends a black man who is on trial for the rape of a white woman.

This review is not an easy one to write, despite the fact that I have seen this film at least 10 times. The reason it does not come easily is that this is one of the most personally important films I have ever seen and is in my personal `Top Five of All Time'. I'm certain there is nothing that can be said about the film that has not already been repeated a multitude of times, so I guess the best thing to do is explain why the film is so important to me.

I first saw this film several years ago and was so profoundly affected by it that I immediately watched it again. Of course, the defense of a man wrongly accused of a crime is a common story line, but To Kill a Mockingbird stands out as an exceptional example for several reasons. Among them, the date that the film was released: 1962, on the cusp of the civil rights movement in America, and the fact that it takes place in the south in the 1930's. It is also far from the first film to explore the experiences of children and their own personal growth, but To Kill a Mockingbird stands out because of its sheer honesty and natural performances by the child actors portraying these rich characters.

But most of all, this film is special because of Gregory Peck's portrayal of Atticus Finch, a true hero. At the risk of sounding histrionic, my heart aches when I watch him on screen because he is such an incredible man, and is so inherently good. No matter how many times I have seen this film, I smile when I see his interaction with his children, and I well with tears when I see his incredible strength of character. (No easy feat to break through the armor of this cynical film geek who, if given the chance would remake at least a few dozen films with tragic endings.) I was sitting in my car listening to National Public Radio recently the day Gregory Peck died, and I'm not ashamed to admit that I sat and cried hearing the retrospective they offered – mainly because the man who portrayed my own personal cinematic hero was gone, but also because Peck lived his life with the same conviction as his best known role; a fact that makes Atticus Finch all the more tangible. The American Film Institute recently named Atticus Finch the number one hero of all time, a choice I consider both brave and insightful in an age where our heroes generally either wield weapons or have super human physical strength. Atticus Finch fights evil as well, but with his strong moral fiber and his mind.

To Kill a Mockingbird is generally required reading during the course of one's education. If you have not read it, do so. If you have not seen the film, do so; and share it with others. It is an exceptional film that stands the test of time and will remain an important addition to film history for as long as the genre exists.


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