Two New Yorkers are accused of murder in rural Alabama while on their way back to college, and one of their cousins--an inexperienced, loudmouth lawyer not accustomed to Southern rules and manners--comes in to defend them.
Bill Gambini and Stanley Rothenstein are two friends from New York University who just received scholarships to UCLA. They decide to drive through the South. Once they arrive in Alabama, they stop at a local convenience store to pick up a few snacks. But, no sooner than they leave the store, they are arrested. They had thought that they were arrested for shoplifting, but they were arrested for murder and robbery. Worse, they are facing execution for this crime. Bill and Stan do not have enough money for a lawyer, so the good news is that Bill has a lawyer in his family, his cousin, Vincent Laguardia Gambini. The bad news is that Vinny is an inexperienced lawyer who has not been at a trial. So, Vinny has to defend his clients and battle an uncompromising judge, some tough locals, and even his fiancée, Mona Lisa Vito, who just does not know when to shut up, to prove his clients' innocence. But he will soon realize that he is going to need help. Written by
When the preliminary hearing is being conducted, a door to the right rear of the witness is open, and a photograph may be seen hanging on the wall. The picture is of William Randolph Hearst, a somewhat odd choice to hang in a courthouse. See more »
It was previously noted that the prosecutor's definition of "verdict" as a term from Old English meaning "truth" is incorrect. While imprecise, the prosecutor is essentially correct. The term comes to English from French voirdit meaning "true saying" (compare the similar legal term voir dir in the film) and ultimately from Latin vera for "truth". Words similarly derived include "verify" and "veritable". See more »
[Vinny and Lisa receive their breakfast orders, Vinny looks at his skeptically]
What's this over here?
You never heard of grits?
Sure, I've heard of grits. I just never actually *seen* a grit before.
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A remarkable cast makes this satiric comedy fresh.
MY COUSIN VINNY is just one of those "feel good" movies delivering some grins that won't wash away. An excellent cast includes Joe Pesci in one of his best roles as a hotshot lawyer. Expect a few unbelievable surprises from the irresistible guy who's smart enough to make one hilarious movie after another. He is downright likeable, and so is Marisa Tomei, a sassy and stylish figurine who was amazingly superb to take home the Best Actress Oscar. Both Pesci and Tomei have the colorful wits and personalities to make a wild pair for themselves (almost like living in the 50s for sure!). Also, the movie's best moment arises when a freight train disturbs Pesci's sleep at five in the morning. The deep downside is the latter portion: a climatic courtroom scene that, while up to the point of interest, runs terribly long and weak....until one of the film's cast members gets into the act! Still, it's worth plenty of good gags and good laughs that aren't so bugging. Pesci would look terrific in a torn-up leather jacket in front of the judge, to his ultimate disgrace! Smart comedy is smart thinking after all.
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