12 Angry Men (1957)
With just over an hour to prepare after cleaning up from the afternoon Matinée we started our more regular endeavour. Being an old black and white film showing on a day with beautiful weather we were never going to get a massive turnout, but 20 day members and 20 annual members came along to watch this excellent story. We enjoyed two short films first: Newsong & U2's Song for Someone.
Twelve Angry Men is a simply made film mainly taking place in one room. Locked in together without air conditioning, the stormy oppressive weather of a New York heatwave adds to the frustrations and bad tempers of the jurors debating the fate of the accused. Only one man remains consistently calm. Despite a thinly veiled violence towards him, he persuades the other eleven to re-appraise the evidence, which in turn, reveals the prejudices and sensibilities of their characters. Finally the storm breaks, the last tensions are released and the jurors return their verdict. The two shorts shown before the main film very powerfully continued ideas of justice in society, and the lack of it. Both held the audience attention. We were a discussion group of seven on Saturday evening. We all thought the weather in the main feature was another character, as it so exacerbated the discomfort the men found themselves in, and the torrential rain, when it finally fell, was baptismal. Sonia