8.2/10
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Judgment at Nuremberg (1961)

Approved | | Drama, War | 18 December 1961 (Sweden)
Trailer
3:01 | Trailer
In 1948, an American court in occupied Germany tries four Nazis judged for war crimes.

Director:

Stanley Kramer

Writers:

Abby Mann, Abby Mann (based on his original story by)
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Popularity
4,343 ( 17)
Top Rated Movies #148 | Won 2 Oscars. Another 14 wins & 25 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Spencer Tracy ... Chief Judge Dan Haywood
Burt Lancaster ... Dr. Ernst Janning
Richard Widmark ... Col. Tad Lawson
Marlene Dietrich ... Mrs. Bertholt
Maximilian Schell ... Hans Rolfe
Judy Garland ... Irene Hoffman
Montgomery Clift ... Rudolph Petersen
William Shatner ... Capt. Harrison Byers
Werner Klemperer ... Emil Hahn
Kenneth MacKenna ... Judge Kenneth Norris
Torben Meyer ... Werner Lampe
Joseph Bernard Joseph Bernard ... Maj. Abe Radnitz
Alan Baxter ... Brig. Gen. Matt Merrin
Edward Binns ... Sen. Burkette
Virginia Christine ... Mrs. Halbestadt
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Storyline

It has been three years since the most important Nazi leaders had already been tried. This trial is about 4 judges who used their offices to conduct Nazi sterilization and cleansing policies. Retired American judge, Dan Haywood has a daunting task ahead of him. The Cold War is heating up and no one wants any more trials as Germany, and Allied governments, want to forget the past. But is that the right thing to do is the question that the tribunal must decide. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Once in a generation...a motion picture explodes into greatness! See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Judy Garland had gained considerable weight since her last picture (A Star Is Born (1954)) and wanted to trim down for the role, but since she was playing a poor German hausfrau, Stanley Kramer convinced her not to alter her appearance. See more »

Goofs

At the night club, when the reporter Max Perkins tells Judge Haywood that he couldn't give a story away on the trials because the American people aren't interested, Haywood remarks, "But the war's only been over for two years," to which Perkins replies, "That's right." The film's opening title card says "Nuremberg 1948" - three years after the end of World War II. The actual Judges Trial, upon which this film is based, was held in 1947. It is likely that the title card is incorrect. See more »

Quotes

Hans Rolfe: Your Honor, it is my duty to defend Ernst Janning, and yet Ernst Janning has said he is guilty. There's no doubt, he feels his guilt. He made a great error in going along with the Nazi movement, hoping it would be good for his country. But, if he is to be found guilty, there are others who also went along, who also must be found guilty. Ernst Janning said, "We succeeded beyond our wildest dreams." Why did we succeed, Your Honor? What about the rest of the world? Did it not know the intentions ...
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Connections

Featured in The 70th Annual Academy Awards (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Lili Marleen
(uncredited)
Music by Norbert Schultze (1938)
Lyrics by Hans Leip (1915)
Partially Performed by Marlene Dietrich (uncredited)
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User Reviews

 
A Film Of Enduring Value
8 May 2005 | by LechuguillaSee all my reviews

They say that time heals all heartache. In the case of the Third Reich, I'm not sure that the old saying is true. Out of respect for the Holocaust victims, and as an important history lesson, there's something to be said for not forgetting the evils of Hitler. Fortunately, we have this great film to help us not forget.

"Judgment At Nuremberg" is a dramatization of one of the many real life post WWII Nuremberg trials of high ranking Nazis. Most of the film focuses on the 1948 courtroom trial of four judges who helped to carry out Hitler's decrees. As part of the prosecution's case against the judges, real life, graphic film footage showing the horrors of the death camps engenders a gut level impression that is both powerful and persuasive. The film thus educates viewers in ways that a dry textbook of facts and figures never could.

But there's more to the film than the trial. In other parts of Nuremberg we see ordinary Germans trying to get on with their lives as best they can, three years after the war's end, in a bombed out and bleak city. One of these persons is Madame Bertholt (Marlene Dietrich), the wife of a dead German soldier. In contrast to the harsh and contentious trial, Madame Bertholt's kindness toward the tribunal's lead judge, Dan Haywood (Spencer Tracy), provides an example of the innocence and decency of ordinary Germans, and thus adds a softer, more contemplative perspective to the ordeal. In these non-courtroom scenes, the melancholy background music and the soft production lighting create a mood of depression and sadness.

I find very little to criticize in this three hour film. Perhaps the plot could have been clearer in identifying the legal counsel of three of the four defendants. And maybe in those scenes wherein the four defendants conversed among themselves, the dialogue should have been in German, not English. But these are trivial points. Overall, this is a film that is well written and directed, a film with credible actors giving stellar performances, and most of all, a film that assures preservation of that era's historic significance, with a political and social message that has enduring value.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

18 December 1961 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Judgment at Nuremberg See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$12,180
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Company Credits

Production Co:

Roxlom Films Inc. See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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