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Anatomy of a Murder 1959

  • Otto Preminger
  • July 1, 1959
  • 160 mins
  • English
  • Crime, Drama, Mystery, Thriller
No search of human emotions has ever probed so deeply, so truthfully as ... Anatomy of a Murder.
Frederick Manion, an Army lieutenant, is arrested for the murder of bartender Barney Quill. In his defense, he claims that Quill raped and beat up his wife Laura. Although Laura supports her husband's story, the police surgeon cannot find evidence of rape. Manion is defended by Paul Biegler, a humble small-town lawyer. During the course of interviews, Biegler discovers that Manion is violently possessive and jealous, and that his wife has a reputation for giving her favors to other men. Biegler realizes that the prosecution will try to make the court believe that Laura was the lover of the bartender and that Manion killed him and beat her up when he discovered them together. Manion pleads "not guilty" and Biegler, who knows that his case is weak, sets his assistants to try to find a witness who will save Manion.


All 2 Comments

I could have sworn I've seen this before but after watching it tonight I don't think so. I know why I wouldn't have committed, I mean it is 2hr40min. Plus I think I would have remembered a movie where Jimmy Stewart repeatedly says the words, "rape" and "panties." This was a good courtroom drama in any era but I am shocked at the material they're dealing with in a 1959 movie. Not only the material but how they leave things by the end.

This is where the spoilers come in: So Jimmy Stewart wins the case. He gets Ben Gazzara (aka the Bad Guy in Road House) off for murdering the guy who raped his wife. But the weird part is, the underlying current of this movie is this: His wife slept around and flirted with everyone in town, he was a jealous, angry wife beater with a temper, and Jimmy Stewart slowly learns this fact. But then he wins the case and everyone moves on, with the facts the same and nothing changes. That seems normal in a movie today but is shocking to see in 1957.

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Shout by MrAnikiVIP
2016-06-03T11:53:13-04:00— updated 2016-07-02T19:15:32-04:00

How can a jury disregard
what it has already heard?
They can't, Lieutenant.
They can't.

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