Monday, July 18, 2005

"You're Out of Order! This Whole Damn Trial is Out of Order."

I am still wondering how Pacino pulls off his performance in "...and Justice for All." I happened to see it on On-Demand cable this weekend.

Everything in the movie is pulling apart at the seams. There are enough sub-plots to fill a weekly television show. There are cheesy set-pieces like the helicopter ride, which seems like it should be in another movie. There is a completely underdeveloped plotline regarding his grandfather, (played by Lee Strasberg,) which consists of the same thing over and over again.

However, through it all, Pacino is fascinating to watch, and the final courtroom scene, (which we all know from the catch-line listed above) is mesmerizing. I watched it again and again. Every time I watch it, I am amazed at how I experience it. I find myself asking, "what is he going to do?" Even though I know the big blow up is coming and I know the lines by heart, I am intrigued by the dilemna of Arthur Kirkland a veteran lawyer who sees no way out of his situation.

It reminds of Marlon Brando's performance in On the Waterfront. Both movies would have been forgettable products of their time without the riveting performances at their core.

And, as an Arrested Development fan, it is great to see Jeffrey Tambor.

*As a side note, when did the idea of the rebel and the true believer become cliched?

No comments: