A New York City narcotics detective reluctantly agrees to cooperate with a special commission investigating police corruption. However, he soon discovers that he's in over his head, and nobody can be trusted.
Frank Galvin was once a promising Boston lawyer with a bright future ahead. An incident early in his career in which he was trying to do the right thing led to him being fired from the prestigious law firm with which he was working, almost being disbarred, and his wife leaving him. Continually drowning his sorrows in booze, he is now an ambulance chasing lawyer, preying on the weak and vulnerable, and bending the truth whenever necessary to make what few dollars he has, as he has only had a few cases in the last few years, losing the last four. His only friend in the profession is his now retired ex-partner, Mickey Morrissey, who gets Frank a case, his fee solely a percentage of what his clients are awarded. The case should net Frank tens of thousands of dollars by settling out of court, that money which would at least get him back on his feet. It is a negligence suit brought on behalf of Deborah Ann Kaye by her sister and brother-in-law, Sally and Kevin Doneghy, against St. Catherine...Written by
James Mason was anxious to work with Sidney Lumet again, and although the actor was offered the part eventually played by Jack Warden, Lumet didn't believe he wanted to do it. At the prompting of his wife, Mason called the director and, fortuitously, Burt Lancaster, who was set to play Concannon, dropped out, and that opened up the role for Mason. See more »
When Frank first sees Laura at the bar he offers to buy her a drink and she refuses. This playing 'hard to get' would run the risk of him never approaching her again. See more »
It seems to me, a fellow's trying to come back, he'd take the settlement, get a record for himself. I, myself. would take it and run like a thief.
I'm sure you would.
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NBC edited 33 minutes from this film for its 1985 network television premiere. See more »
It'll be difficult to find a better courtroom drama.
"The Verdict" has to be called one of the finest courtroom-law dramas of all time, certainly a movie which deserves more recognition than it actually received over the course of the years since its publication. While the plot itself remains rather grounded and straight-forward without any particularly groundbreaking elements, Paul Newman's masterful performance as well as the great supporting actors and actresses are what helps this drama in succeeding at depicting what it aims to depict.
Newman plays an attorney who needs to pull himself together from his drinking problem in order to win a lawsuit surrounding the case of a woman suffering severe brain damage at a hospital. It should come as no surprise that Newman completely immerses himself in the role in a way only Paul Newman can be expected to. The dialogues are another main part of the movie's most intriguing aspects, flowing so well together that it's almost impossible to lose attention of what's happening. At its heart, the movie is not just a courtroom drama, it's about humans dealing with their personal conditions and problems, and it's a movie which knows how to form a bond with viewers and keep them connected to the characters.
Sadly, the movie has not reached a status as a classic of the 1980's. Perhaps it simply was not memorable enough to most viewers, or perhaps it is too fine a movie in a decade remembered mostly for action movies, horror flicks or comedies. However, if you love watching a great performance in a great movie, then "The Verdict" cannot be recommended highly enough.
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