Finding ABA Journal's 25 greatest legal films at the law library
Following up on John's post from yesterday, below is the full list of ABA Journal's "25 Greatest Legal Films." Clicking on the title of each film will take you to our catalog record for the movie in MORRIS. Check out a few today and have a mini-film festival tonight.
Unlike John, I think My Cousin Vinny more than deserves its #3 ranking. Not only is it funny, but it's an accurate and intelligent portrayal of common courtroom protocols. Two other flicks that do a great job exploring the procedural and ethical problems faced daily by practicing attorneys are Class Action (Michael Apted, 1991) and The Rainmaker (Francis Ford Coppola, 1997), each of which earned a slot on the ABA's list of 25 Honorable Mentions.
My favorite legal film? Night Falls on Manhattan (Sidney Lumet, 1996), which didn't get any love from the ABA. It also hasn't gotten any love from Yale Law School, because it's not in our library collection. (But I can probably change that.)
- To Kill a Mockingbird (Robert Mulligan, 1962)
- 12 Angry Men (Sidney Lumet, 1957)
- My Cousin Vinny (Jonathan Lynn, 1992)
- Anatomy of a Murder (Otto Preminger, 1959)
- Inherit the Wind (Stanley Kramer, 1960)
- Witness for the Prosecution (Billy Wilder, 1959)
- Breaker Morant (Bruce Beresford, 1980)
- Philadelphia (Jonathan Demme, 1993)
- Erin Brockovich (Steven Soderbergh, 2000)
- The Verdict (Sidney Lumet, 1982)
- Presumed Innocent (Alan J. Pakula, 1990)
- Judgement at Nuremberg (Stanley Kramer, 1961)
- A Man for All Seasons (Fred Zinneman, 1966)
- A Few Good Men (Rob Reiner, 1992)
- Chicago (Rob Marshall, 2002)
- Kramer vs. Kramer (Robert Benton, 1979)
- The Paper Chase (James Bridges, 1973)
- Reversal of Fortune (Barbet Schroeder, 1990)
- Compulsion (Richard Fleischer, 1959)
- ...And Justice for All (Norman Jewison, 1979)
- In the Name of the Father (Jim Sheridan, 1993)
- A Civil Action (Steven Zaillian, 1998)
- Young Mr. Lincoln (John Ford, 1939)
- Amistad (Steven Spielberg, 1997)
- Miracle on 34th Street (George Seaton, 1947)
Best Legal Movies?
The ABA Journal has a new article in which it rates the "25 greatest legal movies." My Cousin Vinny at #3!!! C'mon, it was funny and all, but #3? Compulsion all the way down at 19 (why did Leopold and Loeb do the murder, "because we wanted to, hah, hah, hah, hah" and Orson Welles channeling Clarence Darrow)! Take a look and see what you think. If you haven't seen one of the films, check Morris to see if it is in and come check it out.