By Sidney Lumet (2015) Movie Script

JUROR 1 : Just
remember that this has to be 12 to nothing either way. That's the law. OK, are we ready? All those voting guilty,
please raise your hands. One, two, three,
four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10, 11. OK, that's 11 guilty. Who's voting not guilty? One. Right. 11 guilty, one not guilty. Well, now we know where we are. Boy, oh boy. There's always one. So what do we do now? I guess we talk. Boy, oh boy. You really think he's innocent? I don't know. SIDNEY LUMET: On this one
day just outside of Calcutta, as the train was pulling
out of the station-- and they were those British
kinds of cars with the center aisle, entrance on
either side, but also individual compartments opening
up with their own doors-- and I was looking
out the window. And there was this little
girl, I guess she was about 12, standing on the platform, and
in the car behind me, a GI, I don't know who, reached out
and swept her off a platform and pulled her into
the compartment that he was riding in. And I was so shocked. I couldn't believe it. And then wrestled
with it for a moment then got up and started making
my way to the car behind me and pulled that door open. And there was a guy,
like that, blocking him. And there were a bunch
of GIs fucking her, just passing her from one to
the other in the compartment and paying for it. And the guy he
said, you want some? It'll cost you whatever. And I said, no, and then
the whole wrestle with do I do anything about this? I'm not directing
the moral message. I'm directing that
piece and those people. And if I do it well, the moral
message will come through. COP 1 : This is car 2118. Call Greenpoint
Hospital and tell them we're bringing in a wounded cop. COP 2 (ON RADIO):
All right, 10-4. Thanks a lot. [siren] [phone ringing] Eighth Precinct. Yeah. Jesus Christ. Guess who got shot. Serpico. You think a cop did it? I know six cops
said they'd like to. I wouldn't deny that morality
in my movies for anything. I know it's there. The difference between
what we're talking about is you think it's
a conscious choice and I say it's an
unconscious choice. I don't pay any attention to it. [music playing] I had no hint whatsoever
that I wanted to do movies. I've got a very
happy disposition, that as long as I'm at
work, I'm perfectly content. I would have been completely
happy to spend the rest of my life in television. I'm glad it went in
another direction because I had a much better
and bigger canvas to work on, but it wasn't a
necessity at all. If you talk to anybody who's
had any sort of career in, I don't know what
other professions, but in our profession,
the biggest single word you'll hear repeated
over and over again is luck. You did a wonderful
job, wonderful. SIDNEY LUMET: On one of
the shows that I was doing, a show called "Danger," which
was a good melodrama, Tuesday night's, 10:00 to 10:30, we
had found a very good writer by name of Reginald Rose. Reggie wrote "12 Angry Men." It was done on, I believe
it was Philco on NBC and had been a successful
television show. When he had the offer to make
it a movie, he jumped at it. The offer came from
Henry Fonda, who was producing at that
time, wanted to start producing his own movies. And here again,
luck came into it. I had been working with Reggie
on live television stuff. We liked each other enormously
and he said to Hank, listen, you know who I'd love to have
direct this, mentioned me. Before I had gotten
into television, I was running a workshop
down in the Village. It was called the
Actor's Workshop. Two of the people in the
workshop-- there were about 40 of us-- were in "Mister
Roberts," in which Henry Fonda was starring in New York. And so they asked him to
come down and see this play. They both had parts
in it and he came. So when Reggie came to him
with my name, he said, oh yeah, I saw something
Off-Broadway of his. It was good. It was damn good. Fine, take him. That simple. I didn't have to audition. I didn't have to have a
discussion with anybody. United Artists, which
put up the money, they were totally courageous
about giving directors their first movie,
and off we went. I didn't even have to meet
and say what my vision was of the-- I'm laughing
at that because that's, of course, the great cliche. What's your vision
of this movie? WALTER CRONKITE: 399 BC,
The Death of Socrates. You are there. Walter Cronkite reporting. 399 BC in Athens, Greece,
the Hellenistic world is waiting the climax of
the trial and condemnation of the philosopher, Socrates. Before the sun goes
down today, Socrates must, according to Athenian
law, perform his own execution and drink the poison hemlock. We take you now to
Athens outside the prison where Socrates is being held. All things are as they were
then except you are there. HARRY MARBLE: This
is Harry Marble. We are watching the sinking sun
here and counting the minutes in the waning light. Just behind that wall
is the cell in which Socrates is awaiting then end. SIDNEY LUMET: I had moved into
television in the early '50s, and that was so
exhilarating, the thrill of, number one, a place to work,
and a place to work steadily. HARRY MARBLE: Citizen
Aristophanes, one moment. Do you think there is
any chance that Socrates might yet be saved? I hope that he will. I think that he will not. But valuing what is
most precious to me, my greatest concern at the
moment is to protect myself. SIDNEY LUMET: I mean
I was doing at one point 60 or 70 shows a year. Now even if you take a small
average of let's say six actors a show-- but the casts
certainly on "You Are There" were more than that-- so
let's see, six times 70 is 420 actors, different actors
to work with in a year's time. God knows how many different
writers, production people, video engineers, audio men. The exposure was brilliant. MELETUS: Citizens! I must be heard! I vote a hearing. HARRY MARBLE: That is
Meletus speaking now. He was the main
accuser at the trial. In the marketplace,
there are people who are howling for my
life, the same people who urged me to accuse Socrates. Oh, is this justice? Is this reason? I did not want Socrates
to be condemned to death. I thought he would be
fined as I would have been and gladly
paid it had the jury found my accusations false. Where are you now, those of
you who voted against Socrates? Why don't you defend me? I did my duty as a citizen. I spoke for Athens,
for democracy. I don't understand you people. I mean, all these picky little
points you keep bringing up, they don't mean nothing. You saw this kid
just like I did. You're not going to tell me
you believe that phony story about losing the knife
and that business about being at the movies. Look, you know how
these people lie. It's born in them. I mean, what the heck? I don't have to tell you. They don't know
what the truth is. And let me tell you, they
don't need any real big reason to kill someone either, no sir. They get drunk. Oh, they're real big
drinkers, all of them. You know that. And bang, someone's
lying in the gutter. Well nobody's
blaming them for it. That's the way they are by
nature, you know what I mean? Violent. Where are you going? Human life don't mean as much
to them as it does to us. Look. They're lushing it up
and fighting all the time and if somebody gets killed,
so somebody gets killed. They don't care. Oh sure, there are some
good things about them too. Look, I'm the first
one to say that. I've known a couple who were
OK, but that's the exception, you know what I mean? Most of them, it's like
they have no feelings. They can do anything. What's going on here? I'm trying to tell you. You're making a big
mistake, you people. This kid is a liar. I know it. I know all about them. Listen to me. They're no good. There's not a one of
them who is any good. I mean, what-- what's
happening in here? I'm speaking my piece
and you-- listen to me. We're-- we're-- this kid
on trial here, his type, well don't you know about them? There's a-- there's
a danger here. These people are dangerous. They're-- why? Listen to me. Listen to me. I have. Now sit down and don't
open your mouth again. I was only trying to tell you. [music playing] SIDNEY LUMET: If you
asked me specifically, when you did "12
Angry Men," were you interested in justice system? Absolutely not. I was interested in
doing my first movie, and I was very impressed
that Henry Fonda wanted me to direct it because
he had seen something I had done Off-Broadway. It was the most obvious motives. "12 Angry Men," I think it
changed the law in England. Great. That isn't why I did it. I wasn't out to change
the law in England. Oh, this is Miss Lovelace,
Miss Eva Lovelace. She's come all the way
from Vermont to see you. How do you do, Miss Lovelace? Would you have a part
for me, Mr. Easton? I would like to start my
career under your management because I reverence the things
you've done in the theater. When you brought
the Old Vic over, I wanted to give up
"Death of a Salesman" to come here and see them,
but then we couldn't find a replacement, so I couldn't. Well where'd you do "Salesmen?" In Ordway, Vermont. Oh. SIDNEY LUMET: All I was ever
interested in was the next job, you know, and when I
got it, that was heaven. [cheers] TRAIN CONDUCTOR: Final call
for the Silver [inaudible]. So glad you could
make it, doll. So glad you could make it. TRAIN CONDUCTOR: All aboard! [horn] Come on, Kelly. She wouldn't let me go! [horn] SIDNEY LUMET: I don't
think there's really any conflict between
being really dirt poor and having a good time. BOY: Hep, hep Blacky. Five, six, seven. Come on out, Blacky. Hep, hep, Blacky. One, two, three. Hep, hep Puddinghead. Come on out, Puddinghead. I got you. You're behind the barrel. Hep, hep, KO 1,2, 3. Come here, KO. SIDNEY LUMET: You
don't know that you're dirt poor at the time. That's just the norm. Having a quarter
pound of boiled meat shredded into two pounds of
potatoes to feed the family, is-- that's the
way you ate meat. Everybody around me
lived the same way, so again, that was the norm. So you're going along
and living your life and then all of a sudden
this other exciting thing comes in, which is
work and creativity. That kid ought to
drop that junk of his. [screams] [music playing] SIDNEY LUMET: It was all
about feeding a family. During the Depression, my
sister and I shared a bed I think until I was about 11 . You buy clothes that
are too big for you so you can grow into them. You did have a toilet. You did not have a bath tub. You bathed in the kitchen. There would be the sink
and the wash basin, and that's what you
used as a bath tub. And this was every
poor kid's life. When the problem
is that desperate, everything else is a luxury--
morals, to hell with unfair. You know that great line of
Brecht's from the "Threepenny Opera," first feed the face,
then tell me right from wrong, that says it. [music playing] They're gonna get you. Do you hear? They're gonna tear you down. How do you like
that, old stinkpot? SIDNEY LUMET: My father
read me "Hamlet" in Yiddish before I ever heard
it in English. [music playing] He was a wonderful actor. During the Depression, my father
was doing a Jewish soap opera-- we had a radio station, WEVD--
which stood for, by the way, Eugene V Debs because
so much in Jewish life was involved with socialism
then-- and 15 minutes, five days a week, and he wrote
it, whatever directing there was to do with it. My mother was in it. I was in it. I was five. He played two parts. $35 a week and that got
us through the Depression. That fed us. I'm glad to have it. And the show was
a tremendous hit. And having a big
hit then, my father started, as so many
other Jewish actors did, would rent a theater
for two weeks before Passover and
through the Passover week and wrote a dramatization of the
characters in the radio show, in the soap opera. It was called the
"Brownsville a Zayde," which means the grandfather
from Brownsville. [music playing] There were 12 Jewish
theaters on 40 week seasons. That's extraordinary. And I'm talking
about big theaters. I mean, the theaters
I acted in as a kid, they sat 1,800 people. It was a remarkable life, it
in itself and my being in it. When I was in it, it was
already on the downhill side, past its glorious days. And its glorious days
happened, really, because of the enormous
Jewish population in New York. If you weren't my
son, there's not a manager in the business
who would give you a part, your reputation stinks so. As it is, I have to humble
my pride and beg for you, say you've turned
over a new leaf, although I know it's a lie. I never wanted to be an actor. You forced me on a stage. That's a lie. You left it to me
to get you a job and I have no influence
except in the theater. When the Jewish theater was
coming to an end, my father already, his mind was racing. He was a survivor. And oh I know what. Maybe if-- Sidney's talented. Maybe if I bring
him up to Broadway, there'll be something there. I was considered one of the two
best kid actors on Broadway, so I worked all the time. Between "Dead End" and when
I enlisted in the army, I did 14 Broadway plays. That's a lot. It also shows that
they were mostly flops. But I worked all
the time and worked in radio, where the checks
were really terrific. I wasn't a star, it was
just work that I loved, that I adored. It kept me off the streets. People always worry
about kid actors. There's nothing wrong with
being exposed to creativity as soon as possible. My father, he taught me
about work-- you work-- and the discipline
of work and the lack of self-indulgence in work,
also the preparation for trouble in show business. Yes, maybe life overdid
the lesson for me. I made the dollar worth too
much and that mistake ruined my career as a fine actor. I've never admitted this
to anyone before, lad, but tonight I'm so heartsick, I
feel at the end of everything, and what's the use of
fake pride and pretense? That goddamn play,
I bought for a song and made such a
great success in, a great money success, it
ruined me with its promise of an easy fortune. The sight of my
father in the instances where he had rented the theater
himself-- which took a money upfront deposit,
non-returnable-- and would look out, and if the
house wasn't good, to now have to go through the show knowing
that he wouldn't even make the rent back, much less the
salaries for the other actors who were performing. It had a sense of
catastrophe about it, really. "Long Day's Journey
into Night" is the story of a family, four people. [music playing] The father is a
steady, steady drinker, but at least has
worked in his lifetime. And the father has a
wonderful, wonderful, sad, heartbreaking problem. By the time I
woke up to the fact that I'd become a
slave to the damn thing and did try other
plays, it was too late. They'd identified me
with that one part and didn't want me
in anything else. They were right, too. I'd lost the great talent
I once had several years of easy repetition, never
learning a new part, never really working hard. $35,000 to $40,000
net profit a season, like snapping your fingers. Yet before I bought
the damn thing, I was considered one of the
three or four young actors with the greatest artistic
promise in America. At that time, one of the big
metro stars was a wonderful kid actor by the name of Freddie
Bartholomew, English, did a lot of good movies. They were having trouble with
him because his contract was up and they were in the midst
of a difficult negotiation. I was appearing in a play and
had gotten wonderful reviews and I was summoned. Mr. Mayer wanted to meet me. He was in New York. And I went up and
met the great man. How do you do? How do you do? Sidney, I saw you
in the play last and you were
marvelous, on and on. And they offered me
a contract, the point of the contract being to keep a
threat to Freddie Bartholomew. The contract was crazy. Over the seven year period, you
got graduated raises until you were earning $750 a week. My father kept upping it. Whenever they offered a
new contract, he'd agree, and then just before
signing, he would say, no, I want some more. Finally, Freddy Bartholomew
signed and of course we were dropped the next day. A year later, we walked
into the Cafe Royal, was it, on 12th Street and
2nd Avenue, the great hangout for Yiddish actors who
are all very old now and all equally unsuccessful. My father always had
very stormy relationships with other Yiddish actors. He was not the calmest
of men, nor the gentlest. A bunch of his enemies were
seated at another table. Remarks started up and back
and finally he got very angry, and he got up, walked
to the other table. From his pocket-- now
mind you, this negotiation had been dead for a year now,
this was a year later-- pulled Metro's last offer from
his pocket and said, listen, you bastards,
we've got this. I can go to Hollywood
any time with my son so. You know, this deal was over. It was, by now, a sheer
figment of his imagination. I don't know whether he
imagined that it was still on. He couldn't have, because
that would have been insane, but the humiliation
that I felt for him and having to do that was-- I play chess with
the other inmates. We put the-- we make our boards
and our chessmen out of paper and then we shout the moves. I always-- see, I always thought
chess was a waste of time, and it is.
It's a terrible waste of time. Time, it's valuable. Now you can put
innocent-- you can put innocent people to jail,
but you can't put their minds in jail, understand? What's wrong?
I burn you? Look here, it didn't fall. The ash is still here, you see? Don't worry. I wouldn't hurt my boy. They are the ones with
the minds in jail, but you can't put innocent
people to death in this country because it can't be done. You'll see. Public opinion
will get behind us. You'll see, my handsome boy. I taught you. I taught you. We cannot break rank. A unit is only as good
as its weakest link. We're a unit. I taught you all of this. Don't you remember that? She hated it when I barbecued. I'm sorry I wasn't able to
be what you wanted me to be. I've never been very good
at talking about feelings or showing you that kind
of affection or support. Well. I'm sorry I wasn't able to
be the father you wanted, but I guess I wanted you to be
better than me and I thought that if I pushed you-- it
may not mean anything to you, but I want you to
know that I really do love you and I'm-- I'm sorry. I'm just so sorry. I'm sorry I wasn't able
to be the son you wanted. One of the automatic things
about drama is family. You're not going to get more
father-son than "Oedipus Rex," and you're not going to get
more father-son than "Hamlet." These are the perennial
sources of drama-- father-son, father-mother,
mother-son, mother-daughter. [music playing] The stage has
degenerated, [inaudible]. What giant oaks there
were in the past. Now we see only stumps. There are certainly fewer
exceptional talents nowadays, but on average, I
think the standard is much higher than it used to be. I got to agree with you. However, it's a matter of taste. [non-english speech] Debauchery. My dear boy, when do we start? In a moment. Have a little patience. "O Hamlet, speak no more. Thou turn'st mine eyes
into my very soul, and there I see such
black and grained spots as will not leave their tinct." Let me ring thy heart,
for so I shall if it be made of penetrable stuff. One of the reasons I resist it
being a special characteristic of my work or
anybody else's work is precisely because these are
the automatic dramatic sources of stimulation and have been
right from the beginning. You haven't asked me what
I found out this afternoon. Don't you care a damn? Don't say that. You'll hurt me, dear. What I've got is serious, mama. Doc Hardy knows for sure now.
- Oh! That lying old quack. I warned you he'd invent. He called in a
specialist to examine me-- - Don't tell me about Dr. Hardy.
- --so he'd be absolutely sure. If you'd heard what the
doctor at the sanatorium, who really knows something,
said about how he treated me, he said it was a wonder
I hadn't gone mad. I told him I had once, that
time I ran down in my nightdress to throw myself off the dock. You remember that, don't you? And you want me to pay attention
to what Dr. Hardy says? Oh, no. Listen, mama! I'm going to tell you whether
you want to hear it or not. I've got to go away
to a sanatorium. [gasps] No! What can I say? I would have loved to have been
around for the shot of Oedipus when he pulls his eyes out. Talk about desperate. I would love to have been
there when Hamlet says, "a hit, a very
palpable hit," knowing that he's going to die from
what seems like a mere flick. That's drama, and I do
not shy away from it. I think the past may have
contributed to it by giving me that operatic sense,
by Herman Yablokoff singing the last act of
"Madame Butterfly" in Yiddish. That taste is both my
strength and my weakness. I see through you, lady. I see through you. What do you see? You'd like me to tell you? I'd love for you to. I see a not so young,
not so satisfied woman who hires a guy
in off the highway to do double-duty without even
giving him overtime for it. Being a store clerk
by day and by night, you know, whatever
you want to call it. You cheap. Hmm? Who you calling cheap? Who you calling cheap? [sobbing] Why'd you come back? Why? To put back the money I took so
you wouldn't remember me as not being honest or grateful. [sobbing] Don't! Don't go! I need you to live,
to go on living. [music playing] SIDNEY LUMET: I'm
not afraid, in fact, almost seek out confined
physical areas to work in. I don't know where
it comes from. I don't know Whether it's
because I'm a city rat, and in a city that's even
as wide open as New York, it's basically a confined area. I wouldn't know what
to do with a Western. I wouldn't know where to begin. I never bought into
the idea that a face is more interesting
against a mountaintop than against the wall. It never seemed to me to be so. The face was what
was interesting. The mountain was going to
be pretty much unchanged. It probably comes from
a limited visual palette in terms of the way
I grew up, which were small rooms, tight areas. I remember when we moved out
to Eastern Parkway in Brooklyn. Well I'd never seen anything
like that-- cars instead of trucks, an island
where you could sit under the trees, a four
lane street, another island, another single street. That width, I've
never seen it before, and that was to me and to
other Jews who moved there, it was are equivalent in the
'30s of moving to suburbia, of the great outdoors. Well folks, what
can I tell you? You're all so smug
in your certainty. Well let's see. We got over the Depression. We got over Hitler! SIDNEY LUMET: New York as a
setting is capable of whatever mood or dramatic statement you
want to make-- architecturally, in its light. Boy, talk about winter
light, as Mr. Bergman did. New York's winter
light is ravishing. I'm not comfortable
any place but New York. When I leave New York
for any other place in the United States,
my nose starts to bleed. [music playing] ANNOUNCER: An announcement
from the great and powerful Oz. THE WIZ: I thought it
over and green is dead. Till I change my mind,
the color is red. [gong] [music playing] SIDNEY LUMET: We had a scene
where Dorothy and the Scarecrow and the Tin Man and the Cowardly
Lion and Toto arrive in Oz, and I could think of
no location in New York that I found more
fantastic and that I thought would be worthy of being
Oz than the World Trade Center. When the World Trade
Center first opened, it was attacked mercilessly
architecturally. The critics were-- oh,
just these two big piles of concrete, et cetera. I found them beautiful, so we
decided to do Oz down there. We had to add certain
things for the dancers-- this enormous platform
which would change color because, interestingly enough,
photographically, green is a lousy color. And we wanted to
get to red or gold. We worked there I think
for four days and nights. When 9/11 happened and I saw
the second building come down, it really broke
my heart because I had had a working
relationship and I felt that that was my space. [music playing] Hello Dorothy. Please, is there a
way for me to get home? Well Dorothy, you were
wise and good enough to help your friends find what
was inside them all the time. That's true for you also. Home inside me? I don't understand. I don't know for most people
what the idea of there's no place like home means. I think if you've had a
terrible home that it's not particularly wonderful thing. I think one can find a home
in many different places. I think that Baum meant it
quite literally because he came from a simpler background. He came from my more
bucolic background. And Dorothy herself was
in a bucolic setting. To try to apply
it to urban living is dangerous because
in urban living, I don't know that the
literal idea of there's no place like home really works. For me, the whole question of
what was home, what is home, always has the same answer--
wherever I'm working. Hello. I'm Sidney Lumet. I'm the director of this
production of "The Dybbuk" that you're about to see. It's a play that's
very close to me. My father appeared in it
in I think it was 1927. It's the first play that I ever
saw in the Yiddish theater. One of the reasons I rehearse
and one of the reasons I shoot so fast is because
of my training, because I came from
the theater, because I came from live television. In both of those, you have to
make your dramatic selection in advance. When you're doing a
play, a point comes, you may go into
rehearsal this way or it may happen at the
end of the first week, the second week,
but at some point, the director or
somebody has to say this is what this play is about. And now we channel everything
into that one river. Very often it has to be done
in advance by the director because by then you've
committed to sets. You committed to a color scheme. You committed to costumes. And all of those are part
of what is this play about or what is this movie about. So I automatically do that
when I'm doing a movie. I don't mean what is it
about in a plot sense, because that becomes--
that's self-evident. But what is it
about emotionally? [music playing] SIDNEY LUMET: Can
you survive-- can one survive total destruction,
where you are already dead? That's a story of a man
coming back to life, and the only way he can start
back to life is through pain. [music playing] The reason the
Holocaust is unique is not that it
was the first time that a population was killed. That's happened
throughout history. But I think it was the first
time that your next door neighbor killed you, that
six million neighbors killed six million people. There is a scene in the movie
where he goes onto a subway car and the faces in the
subway car are bringing him back to his trip in the
train in the car on the way to Auschwitz. And I just started to think of
how my own memory works when I don't want to face something
and that there's a flash of it and a flash of it. And if it's strong enough, the
flashes get longer and longer and finally it will take over. We just translated that
literally into movie terms. [baby crying] This whole approach was
predicated on the fact that he did not want
to remember that he has spent all of these years
blocking these memories out. Needless to say,
like all good things, it immediately became the
property of Madison Avenue and for the next four
years you could see nothing but-- they even had a phrase
for it, subliminal advertising. Now funnily enough, on "Long
Day's Journey into Night," I never did try to
define it, the reason being that every once
in a while-- it's not going to happen often
in your career-- you have a text that is so great
that if you try to say it's about this, if you try to
define it as one thing, you're going to limit it. The words are for the world. The best thing you
can do with that is just investigate
it to such a point where you feel free to let
whatever happens happen. But that's on a great text. If you try to do that on a
very good text or a good text, you'll just have anarchy. You can't leave it to define
itself because it won't. So in selecting that
definition and limitation, you are not only
determining where you want to go emotionally, but
how you're going to get there. In other words, it
defines the style in which you're going to make the movie. Yeah? EUGENE MORETTI (ON PHONE):
What are you doing in there? Who's this? EUGENE MORETTI (ON PHONE):
This is Detective Sergeant Eugene Moretti, asshole. We got you completely
by the balls. You don't believe me. I'm looking you
right in the eye. Right now I can see you. SAL: Who is it? Cops. [sirens] SIDNEY LUMET: On "Dog Day
Afternoon," here is a real life incident and the actors
all portraying real people to whom this actually happened. The picture was
about, hey, we're not these outrageous characters,
like Pacino's character. These people are not the
freaks We think they are. We have much more in
common with the freaks than we'd like to
admit about ourselves. Now that immediately defined
the Way the movie was going to be done because
in order for that to be clear, the first
obligation became, hey folks, this really happened. That means that nothing about
it could feel like a movie, look like a movie. It had to look as close
to a live television transmission of
action that was taking place right at that moment-- [music - elton john, "amoreena"] --which in the terms of the
real incident actually happened. Channel 5 had it
on for four hours. So it defines not only the
inner life of the movie and what we're going
to work on-- actors and myself-- but
camera, clothes, the entire visual
approach, in other words, the style of the movie. It's a movie that I
did not realistically, but naturalistically. I very often make up a
color palette for a movie, and in certain cases like,
"Dog Day," no palette. Let it all be accidental. Nobody had a costume
made for that. I asked all the actors to
wear their own clothes. Needless to say, on the
outside with 300 extras and 500 neighborhood people just
hanging around and watching, there was no control
of the color. But I didn't want it. I wanted it all accidental. The thing that I
think makes "Dog Day" what it is Pacino's
performance, because it could very easily
have degenerated into a sensationalist piece. That was the thing I
was most afraid of. It is really not my job to try
to estimate what an audience is going to think of. All I can do is do the
piece as best I can and hope that they come along with it. I talked to the
actors about that the first day of rehearsal. I said to the cast,
this is the only time. I've got to talk about what's
going to happen with this movie on a Saturday night at
the Loew's Pitkin, which was a fancy movie house
in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn. I don't want a voice coming
from the balcony, hey you fags. If that happens, we've
done a lousy movie. And we've got to reach,
on a fundamental level, into anybody watching
this movie to make them aware of the
humanity of these two men. And I couldn't have
had a better person to unearth that feeling
than Pacino because he's like an open wound up there. Being of sound mind and
body, you know, and all that. To my darling wife, Leon,
whom I love more than any man has loved another
man in all eternity. I leave $2,700 from my
$10,000 life insurance policy to be used for your
sex change operation. If there is any
money left over, I want it to go to
you at my first-- at the first anniversary
of my death at my grave. To my Wife, to my
sweet wife, Angela, $5,000 from the same policy. You are the only woman
that I ever loved. I do feel very good about what
I can get other people to do, and it's never
through manipulation. By the way, there is no
right or wrong in this. Kazan, who was, god
knows, a great director was very exploitative of
the actors in the sense that he would quickly discern
where the neurosis lay and then play on that as part
of getting the performance-- with some actors, not all. But I've seen him do it. I could never do
something like that. I'd rather let the
performance go. OK, so we didn't-- I
get it by knowledge of their craft and empathy
to them as human beings. My dad. Oh god. It's not fair! It's not fair! All my life I've been afraid of
becoming like him, all my life, all my life with you
and it's not fair. He can't just say he's sorry
and make it all go away. It's too late. It's not that easy. It's not fair! It's not fucking fair! No, Dad. Oh god. He can't do that. SIDNEY LUMET: All good
work is self-revelatory. The good actors,
you know everything there is to know about them. If I'm directing you, you're
going to know everything there is to know about me. I mean, my casts at the end of
the rehearsal period know me. I was a member of
the Actor's Studio, the original group that
Bobby Lewis and Kazan began. And I was thrilled, of course,
because like every actor, you want a place to work. Americans were the
best realistic actors in the world at that time,
in movies and in the theater. And I said, look,
realism, realistic acting is only one style. It's got no
superiority about it. There are a million other styles
that we need to know about. I mean, how do you do
restoration comedy? How do you do the
Shakespearean comedies? How do you do Oscar Wilde? And I got thrown out of the
studio, and it was a big shock. It was a very, very
god awful feeling. And the only Way to handle it
was to form my own workshop. The actors said, Sidney,
as we work on scenes, it would be terrific if one
of us could direct the scene. So why don't we start
with you directing them? And that's literally how
I fell into directing. I was a very good
friend, at that time, with Yul Brynner,
who was a marvelous guy and a director at CBS. Television had barely
begun, live-- drama. And what most people
don't know about Yul is that he was a
terrific director. I was also flat broke and Yul
said, Sidney, they don't know what the fuck they're doing. Come on in. It's fun. [music playing] ANNOUNCER: The Alcoa
Hour, brought to you live from New York by
Aluminum Company of America. And now for the best in
Sunday evening drama-- "Tragedy in a
Temporary Town," yeah. "Tragedy in a Temporary
Town" was about one of those communities
that had been put up around a construction
project in which the houses were
trailer homes and about the insecurity of life there. Now I got half a plan here. I want to tell it to you. Me and the boys
have been talking outside there, right men? That's right. All right, number one, we put
guards around the whole area. Nobody get in or out
until we're finished. Number two We get a list of
every man's name in the place over 15 years old and we
get up committee and we question each guy. That committee will be you,
Fisher, her and two others. We find this guy
in a couple hours. And then we got some plans too. I'm going to dig
my hooks into him. All right, that's enough. How about it? Well I don't know if
we can just go on out. Yeah, well we're
going to stop him. Look, I tell you, Duran,
you ought to call the police. You can't run things like this. Who can't? You can't. I mean, this kind of stuff is
dangerous, taking over the law. [yelling] SIDNEY LUMET: This
was a live show. The climax took place
in this outdoor field. It's at night, which we did so
that We could light it by just putting up simulated
automobile headlights with him in the middle. [inaudible] see him better. SIDNEY LUMET: And Lloyd Bridges,
who was playing the lead, flipped out on air. Huh? What are you going to do? I don't know! I don't know! He got so involved,
so intense about it, he started, you sons of
bitches, you-- with tears coursing down his face. And it was terrific
acting, but it was disastrous live
television because of the language he was using. I never saw what went
out onto the air. I was in the control room. Come on and get me, pigs. Come on! The first one up gets
it across his face. Go on, you pigs. You pigs! You pigs! You pigs! Just look at yourselves. Don't it make you
creep with shame? You mob of dirty, thick-skulled
pigs, and all of a sudden, you're the law. Well let me tell you something. Every time that pigs
like you mob together to become your
own law, you crawl one step closer to the cliff. That's what you did to him. Someone will do to you and
it'll be your fault, you hear? It'll be your fault because
you started it rolling. And here's the beauty part. When some other pigs
come for you sometime, it might not be because
you did something wrong. It might be for
no reason at all. Blacklisting was creeping
in, and as we know from our recent past, we
are capable of a very strong right wing in this
country, and it was pervasive, all pervasive. Television had it
tougher even than movies. They were tough on CBS
because their real objective was to break the
CBS news department, which under Fred
Friendly and Ed Murrow, they considered left wing. And Paley, to his everlasting
credit, said you cannot touch the news department. I don't care if you
bring the network down. Because a report on Senator
McCarthy is, by definition, controversial, we want to say
exactly what we mean to say. And I request your
permission to read from script whatever remarks
Murrow and Friendly may make. SIDNEY LUMET: We,
on "You Are There," found out that Murrow was
going to do his McCarthy show. And out of deep
respect for Murrow, but also out of our own
personal convictions, We thought, well, We cannot
leave him alone in this. So we decided to join the
fray in the only way we could. A ferment of
hysteria and fear has been seething in the
little Massachusetts colony village of Salem. Since spring, several
villagers there have faced trial for witchcraft. The accusations have all
been made by a group of girls ranging in age from nine to
20, who claimed to be tormented and tempted by certain
people and they cry out on them as witches or wizards. Every single word was actual
transcript of the trials. People like to think
Murrow's show mattered. I don't think it did. I don't think any art has ever
made a raindrop's difference in a bucket of water. Remove the prisoner. But I am innocent! SIDNEY LUMET: Fear is-- it's
accurate but inadequate. It was terror. There were spies. There were people getting
up left and right-- I saw him at a
Communist Party meeting. That happened to me
and it was a total lie. My sponsor came to
us and said, we're having a lot of trouble Sidney. You have been named
in the "American Legion" magazine
as having attended a Communist Party meeting. And there's a big campaign
for us to fire you and we're not going to. And about a month
later, he said, look, we can't fight the
campaign anymore. Would you be good enough
to meet with them? And I didn't know, of course,
know who them would be. JUDGE: You seem to be
studied in the language of divine philosophy, sir. I studied two years
for the ministry. JUDGE: Before
studying for the bar? I never studied law. Nor I, nor any of us. JUDGE: But gentleman-- We were appointed for our
discretion and fidelity by Governor Fipps
of this colony, of which I have the honor
of being deputy governor. JUDGE: I see. And I remember
walking up there, kind of nice pleasant
evening, and literally not knowing what I would do. I didn't know whether I'd crawl. I didn't know whether
I'd behave well. I literally didn't know because
the whole careers on the line. If this meeting doesn't
go well, I'm out of work and out of work everywhere. I remember feeling-- and
this is why I've always had some sympathy for Kazan--
I was hoping desperately that a truck would round
the corner quickly and solve the problem for me because
the dilemma was so intense, and the fear on both sides. If I behaved badly, the fear of
having behaved badly because I knew what the process would be. The process would be that if
I said, OK, that was me, then they'd say OK, and who else? Because it never stopped. They kept after you. It was a sign of your good
faith or not if you named names. Finally, I arrived somewhere
on Park Avenue and the doors open into the apartment
and I behaved well. I was so filled with feeling by
then as I was crossing the room into Mel's apart, I was, you
son of a bitch, what you-- and cursing and yelling at
these two guys sitting there, whom I'd never seen before. And one of them said,
relax, relax, don't get your balls in an uproar. You're not the one. The fascists are taking
Europe, the world is dying, and you're playing
Trotskyist politics. There would be no Hitler today
if not for Stalin, true or not? That is simplistic. Where was Stalin when a
united front in Germany could have kept Hitler
from seizing power? Now you're all
big anti-fascists. We're prepared to grant
you your righteousness. What then? Remember how you
broke up our meeting? Your people threw
chairs, I remember. Yesterday we were
social fascists. Today, we're your comrades. You're a simplistic sectarian. No I'm not.
I'm Jewish. Then maybe you'll
explain to the Jews in Nazi concentration camps the
fine points of your dialectic. What about Spain? What about the
Trotskyites in Spain? SIDNEY LUMET: It was always
called the Soviet Union-- it was not called Russia--
so as to distinguish it from czarist Russia. This generation of people,
including my mother, remember Cossack raids in
which Jews were killed. Among Jews, it was
always called the Soviet Union, with great
respect because it was the hope of the future. [music playing] Anything about Stalin's
crime was denied. It was capitalist propaganda. The fact that it
turned out to be true was deeply upsetting
to a great many people. There was a tremendous sense of
responsibility of taking care of each other, and
that mutual protection created a knowledge of
dependency, which is, to me, a very moving idea. I am not alone. I owe something to other people. And that communal sense
explains a great deal about Jewish life in New York. It's why it became
very left wing. Out of the social behavior
emerged a political behavior. It formed a basic
reaction to injustice that's still part of me today. Cossack! Look out! Cossack! Cossack! [yelling] [horse whinnying] SIDNEY LUMET: The
Rosenbergs, the actual case was quite confusing because
there were other left wing radicals who were
being brought up on various espionage charges. The two of them seemed like
your average left winger, New York left winger. There was nothing-- it
didn't seem to be anything exceptional in their lives. I was shocked when the
execution came, as everyone was because this
had never happened in the history of the country. No one had ever
been put to death for espionage in peacetime. "The Book of Daniel," which
is possibly, in my view, a great book, and the
movie of "Daniel," which is, despite its failure
critically and commercially, I still think one of the best
pieces of work I've ever done. Please, get the
children up there. Daniel! Let them by. [cheers] SIDNEY LUMET: The plot was
about Julius and Ethel Rosenberg and their two children,
about the consequences of their devotion
to a political cause and the consequences
upon both children, with the sister
dying and the boy in an endless pursuit
of looking for a reason that the sister died. Here are the children! [cheers] SIDNEY LUMET: It's a
movie about what cost does the passion of
the parents create in the rest of the family. [music playing] So when that failed and the
script of "Running on Empty" came along, I was
delighted because I liked the script, but the
main reason that it was the exact same theme. Who pays for the
passions of the parents? It was about two
'60s radicals who blew up a lab that was making
napalm and in the process killed a nightwatchman
who wasn't even supposed to be there and had now
been on the run from the FBI for umpteen years with
their two children. Maybe now we would get this
theme out because the story was much simpler. The story was much
more sentimental. It was about a boy who
wanted to be a pianist. As you know, that failed also. Looking back and
saying, boy, you really must have been on some
sort of internal concern about what happened
with your own kids in relation to you
working so much. You've never talked
to them about it. I never have. I've never asked them, did
you feel deprived of me? Did you miss me? Was I there for you? Even if I was physically there,
which was an easy concession to make, was I there? Was I there in attention
and in heart and soul? I've never asked them
that, but I obviously sure have wondered about it. What's the matter with dad? He's just had a lot to drink. Born in Plattsburgh,
New York July 16, 1944. US citizen! I'm a-- SIDNEY LUMET: The
Judd Hirsch character comes from '30s radicals and
has '30s radicals values. So he has imposed that
culture on his family, and it's one of the sources
of tension in the family. I want to stay. Stay? SIDNEY LUMET: When he says
we cannot break up the unit, we cannot break up the family,
he means more than just father, mother, son, younger son. He means we cannot break
up this cultural family, this cultural unity,
this cultural giving, handing down of one value from
one generation to the next-- the value of radicalization as
opposed to the value of art. Radicals always have
something to offer. I'm not talking about
fundamentalists. I'm talking about radicals. They're different words
meaning different things. And that is lost to
our society and that's why nobody says anything. I want you to get up now. I want all of you to get
up out of your chairs. I want you to get up right
now and go to the window. Open it and stick your head out
and yell, I'm as mad as hell and I'm not going to
take this anymore! I'm mad as hell and I'm not
going to take it anymore! I'm mad as hell. I'm not going to
take it anymore! I'm mad as hell and I'm not
going to take it anymore! I'm not going to
take it anymore! I'm mad as hell! I'm mad as hell! I'm mad as hell and I'm not
going to take this anymore. I don't think "Network"
represented a change in attitude for
me from the way I felt in the '60s to what
I was not perceiving in the '70s, '80s, et cetera. I think that we grow up. Being poor draws me
to radical material. I've been lucky. I've been able to do movies
about that kind of life rather than living
that kind of life. I did not do what
a great many movie people did in the late
'60s and early '70s. I did not go down to Selma. I did not go down to visit
Martin Luther King in prison. My activization stopped
really with May Day marches, in which I
would walk with Actors' Equity Association. I for me did it
in a more, to me, more satisfying way, which is
to take it as subject matter. I love "Network" for
the obvious reasons. First of all, it's a
hell of a good picture. HOWARD BEALE (ON TV):
I'm going to blow my brains out right on this
program, a week from today. 10 seconds to commercial. HOWARD BEALE (ON TV):
So tune in next Tuesday. That should give the
public relations people a week to promote the show. You ought to get a
hell of a rating out of that, about 50 share, easy. SIDNEY LUMET: I knew that
I would have a tough time in the studio system. On the one hand, I was
very, very headstrong-- I still am-- but I didn't
have final cut in those days. And I know what would have
happened, which was I would get into arguments and maybe
even fights of some sort and they could always
take their revenge out in re-cutting the picture. And that is about as painful
thing I think for a director as anything that can happen. The business of
management is management. SIDNEY LUMET: I didn't have
an adversarial relationship with Hollywood. Look, if you know
anything about movies, you know there's 100 glorious
years of rather wonderful work that's come out of there. The department thing is
what really bothered me. I went to a production
meeting with 26 people sitting around a table. Now of those 26
people, 20 of them were heads of departments
who would never have anything to do with my picture. They were never going
to be on location. They wouldn't come along. They'd never leave Hollywood. And they would have an
awful lot to say about it, including one man who was the
head of the animal department and who was going to ship me--
we needed about 200 horses-- he was going to ship me 200
horses from Hollywood to Virginia, the greatest horse
breeding state in the union. NELSON CHANEY: I
don't believe this. I don't believe the top brass
of a national television network is sitting around
their Caesar salads-- FRANK HACKETT: The top brass of
a bankrupt national television network with projected losses-- SIDNEY LUMET: "Network"
was about nothing but the men in suits, really. Nobody in that
movie is creative. The most creative person
in there is a lunatic. Affiliates will
kiss your ass if you can hand them a hit show. SIDNEY LUMET: I don't think it
was part of Paddy Chayefsky's intent and it
certainly wasn't part of mine to needle the networks. I think we were after bigger
game, if I may say that. For me, it was a
question of corruption in the American spirit. ARTHUR JENSEN: Good
morning, Mr. Beale. They tell me you're a madman. How are you now? I'm as mad as a hatter. ARTHUR JENSEN: Who isn't? I'm going to take you
into our conference room. Seems more seemly a setting
for what I have to say to you. I started as a
salesman, Mr. Beale. I sold sewing machines and
automobile parts, hairbrushes, and electronic equipment. They say I can sell anything. SIDNEY LUMET: Clearly, "Network"
is not just about television. "Network" is a
metaphor for America. ARTHUR JENSEN:
Valhalla, Mr. Beale. Please, sit down. SIDNEY LUMET: One
of the things that was so blinding when I read that
script was Paddy's prescience. That is a scene where Ned Beatty
reads the Riot Act to Howard. He says, what's the matter
with you, you idiot? There is no city, country. There's only one
giant corporation. Isn't that more true today than
almost any other single factor? Do you have any doubt? I mean, the insanity. We are in a war. Men are dying. Halliburton is
cooking their meals? And our children
will live, Mr. Beale, to see that perfect world in
which there's no war or famine, oppression or brutality, one
vast and ecumenical holding company for whom all men will
work to serve a common profit, in which all men will
hold a share of stock-- SIDNEY LUMET: The power is
never in conflict or in doubt. Gentlemen, this is the
President of the United States. Whatever orders I give
to American personnel are to be considered
direct orders from the Commander in Chief. They are to be obeyed
fully, without reservation, and at once. We must do everything we
can to prevent our planes from attacking Moscow. The Soviet Premier has
behaved as I believe I would under similar conditions. He has delayed retaliation. I think he believes
this is an accident. I therefore order every
American to cooperate fully with Soviet
officers in shooting down our invading planes. Gentlemen, I expect you to
conduct yourselves as patriots. [inaudible] Roberts. Sir. Your commanding officer
gave you an order. He ordered you to fight, so you
don't just [inaudible] there. Is that right? Sir. Is that all you got to say? Sir, it's all I want to say. See that hill? I noticed it as I came in. We built it special. A few tons of sand and rock
and a lot of labor and sweat. The prisoners built it. Well that's marvelous, sir. That's a great
construction feat. Something tells me you're
going to get to know him well. I don't want any
special privileges. SIDNEY LUMET: "The
Hill" is about a very heroic, well-seasoned
fighting sergeant, British sergeant, who refuses
to obey an order in a combat situation and gets
court-martialed and sentenced to two years at this
British stockade, which is a very rough place, indeed. By early December of
'42, I was in the army. And as miserable as it
was, and it was miserable, the culture shock for
somebody like me, who, despite my rough life, had never
seen this kind of roughness, it was in many ways as painful
a time as I've ever had, and yet it was a
time that I wanted. Because of my eyes, I was
what's called limited service, but I desperately
wanted to get overseas. I very much resented
the theater people that I knew who were
spending the war at the Russian Tea Room. They would get
themselves assigned to various army
entertainment projects and never leave New York. The terrible part was army
life, where the main object is to reduce you to a
common denominator so that you react-- all of you
react-- in the exact same way. It took me so long to figure
out Why when you had toilets, they couldn't put up stalls. I'm not even
talking about doors. Just put up walls
so that one toilet is separated from the other. Uh-uh, they don't. You take your dump next
to another person taking their dump and that is to
destroy any sense of you're an individual. Order a first strike, General. Put an end to it
once and for all. You have the power. You can do it. Colonel, you are
talking treason. Stop it now or I'll have
you put under arrest. MARSHAL NEVSKY (ON
RADIO): General Bogan, this is Marshal Nevsky. Yes, Marshal? MARSHAL NEVSKY (ON RADIO):
Will you please give us position of the three planes? We can fly fighters
at various altitudes. Can do. Gentlemen, I am taking
over command of this post. By the direct authority
of the president, I now command you to
take all orders from-- Colonel, we got
orders, Colonel. You make a fuss,
they'll kill you. SIDNEY LUMET: The mob
mentality is precisely what the Army works on. [groans] Me first. SIDNEY LUMET: "The Hill,"
it's about the hopelessness of fighting authority
for anything other than your own conscience. Not guilty. SIDNEY LUMET: I consider that
fight for your individuality, for me, it's the essence of what
a life should be about, what a good life should be about. I think not just the
Army, everything conspires to crush your individuality. [music playing] - Hello Frank.
- Hey Frank. Frankie. All right, look, We all know
what this is about, right? So without any bullshit, Frank,
what the hell was happening between you and Don Rubello? Simple I-- I didn't
take any money. I don't take money. Rubello said if I changed
my mind, he'd hold my share. He'd give it back to me. I didn't change my mind. Conniving bastard. All right. That was my money
he was stealing. Look, I'll handle Rubello. I'll get back the
money he took, but this ain't going to happen again. From now on, no
more three bagmen. Starting today, every
one of you fucks makes his own collections. No stops. No bread, OK? OK. Right, you got it. What about you, Frank? I'll make up what
Don took from you. Why should I stop now? Everybody'd feel a lot
better about you, Frank. You can always give
it to charity, Frank. Look, Frankie, what do
you say $100 a month, just for expenses? For my secretary and
my business lunches, entertainment? All right. We split Frank's
share from now on. You're a schmuck, Frank. [music playing] Question authority. Whoever the schmuck was who
said, listen, let's take down the wall and bring
that horse in, that's the idiot who
should have been questioned before he took one brick down. SERPICO: Why didn't you tell
him about Delaney and Kellogg? Frank, this was a grand
jury about police officers actively engaged in corruption. You don't implicate people
without sufficient evidence. Now that's crap
and you know it, because even a dumb
cop like me knows a prosecutor can take
a grand jury anywhere it wants to take it. Now you never led me anywhere
near the real problems, nothing about the bosses, the brass,
how corruption like this could exist without
anybody knowing about it. Now a few flunky cops
in the Bronx, that's it. None of the shit in Queens,
Brooklyn, Manhattan. While you're at it, why
don't you mention Kansas City? Well the biggest
thing since Harry Gross, that's what you said. All right. Look, Frank, you've
got guts, integrity. There's going to
be a detective's gold shield in this for you. Well that's terrific. Now that's good. Maybe this is what
it's all about. Maybe I should take my
gold shield and forget it. I know you've been
through an ordeal, Frank. I'm a marked man in
this department for what? I've already arranged
the transfer for you. To where? China? I love characters who are
rebels because not accepting the status quo, not accepting
the way it's always been done, not accepting that this
is the way it has to be is the fundamental area of human
progress and drama, god knows. Did you ever hear the
story of the wise king? Nope, but I got the feeling
I'm going to hear it. Well there was this-- this king
and he ruled over his kingdom. Yeah? Right in the middle
of the kingdom, there was a well and that's
where everybody drank. And one night this
witch came along and she poisoned the well. Ah. And the next day, everybody
drank from it except the king and they all went crazy. And they got together in
the street and they said, We got to get rid of the
king because the king is mad. Uh oh. [gun shot] [sirens] SIDNEY LUMET: I'm not
denying for a minute that I'm attracted
to the radical. I'm attracted to the questioner. I don't know if life
is possible without it. Serpico was certainly a radical. One of the most interesting
things about Serpico as a character to me is
that he would have been the same pain in the
ass no matter what his profession had been. He was geared for overthrowing
whoever was immediately over him, and the
fact that he was a cop just made it exceedingly
difficult and very dangerous. With my generation
of kids, you develop this sense of resistance. You never went to them for help. Any contact with the
police, unless it was a murderous situation,
was considered being a rat. Just get me wired and sit back. It'll happen. Now remember, the
antenna has to hang loose. The battery back,
the transmitter, they're always problems. They're bulky. If you frisk,
they're hard to hide. [knock] SIDNEY LUMET: "Prince
of the City"-- I did not know how I
felt about Bob Leuci, the leading character in it. In my bringing up,
a rat is a rat. Ben Gazzara and I used
to talk about this in live television days. He was doing a show for
me once, a live show, on Salvatore Giuliano, you
know, the Sicilian bandit. And at rehearsal, he told us
about how he was walking, how he was in the street
talking-- he was eight-- and a cop came over and
asked him something. And he answered
the cop and he went upstairs, entered his
apartment and his father went-- [smack] --spia, spy. I accuse that one. This rat! Don't you call him that! What are you scared of? He is a rat. He belongs in a sewer. And I was brought up that way. So the fact that he ratted
right away separated us, yet it's the first script that I
co-wrote with the wonderful Jay Presson Allen. And I picked the name-- we
had to give him another name-- and I picked the name Ciello,
which in Italian means sky. So this ambivalence existed
from the very beginning, and I did not know-- I promise
you this is the truth-- I did not know how I felt about
him until I saw the first cut and I ran it after it
had been all edited. STUDENT: What did you
say your name was? CIELLO: Ciello. STUDENT: Are you the
Detective Ciello? I'm Detective Ciello. I don't think I have
anything to learn from you. [music playing] SIDNEY LUMET: Oh,
I made him a hero. The weak. The weak have got to have
something to fight for. Ain't that the truth? Want another drink? Yeah. Jimmy! Yeah? See, that's why
the court exists. The court doesn't exist
to give them justice. The court exists to give
them a chance at justice. Are they going to get it? They might. They might. See, the jury wants
to believe-- I mean the jury wants to believe. It is something to see. I got to go down there tomorrow
and pick out 12 of them. All of them, all their
lives, think, it's a sham. It's rigged. You can't fight city hall. But when they step
into that jury box, I know you just barely see it
in your eyes, maybe, maybe-- Maybe what? Maybe I can do something right. FRANK GALVIN: I am an attorney
on trial before the bar, representing my
client, my client. You open your mouth, you're
losing my case for me. JUDGE: Now listen to me, fella. No, you listen to me. All I want out of this
trial was a fair share. Push me into court five days
early, I lose my star witness, and I can't get a
continuance and I don't care. I'm going up there. I'm going to try it. I'm going to let
the jury decide. They told me about you,
said you're a hard ass, you're a defendant's judge. Well I don't care. I said to hell with
it, to hell with it! SIDNEY LUMET: In "The
Verdict," Paul Newman plays a lawyer who's
become an ambulance chaser. He's a boozer, a
bit of a Womanizer, but doesn't even have much
passion for that anymore, who gets involved in a
case about a woman injured in an accident. Somehow or other, this woman
becomes more than the case and becomes a
human being to him. Because it's a human
contact, it opens him up to a salvation of
his own self, a case to care about, a
client to care about, and in which he wants to
win no longer for the money, but in which he wants to
win for his own salvation. In his summation to the jury, he
doesn't tell them that in fact, but he tells them
that in spirit. FRANK GALVIN: You know, so much
of the time, we're just lost. We say, please, God,
tell us what is right, tell us what is true. Only there is no justice. The rich win. The poor are powerless. We become tired of hearing
people lie and after a time, we become dead, a little dead. We think of ourselves as
victims and we become victims. We become-- we become weak. We doubt ourselves. We doubt our beliefs. We doubt our institutions. And we doubt the law. But today, you are the law. You are the law,
not some book, not the lawyers, not
a marble statue, or the trappings of the court. See, those are just symbols
of our desire to be just. All that they are, they are,
in fact, a prayer, a fervent and a frightened prayer. In my religion, they say,
act as if you had faith, faith will be given to you. If-- if we are to
have faith in justice, we need only to believe in
ourselves and act with justice. I believe there is
justice in our hearts. JUROR: Well what about it? You're the only one. I have a proposition
to make to all of you. I'm going to call
for another vote. I want you 11 men to vote
by secret, written ballot. I'll abstain. If there are 11 votes for
guilty, I won't stand alone. We'll take in a guilty verdict
to the judge right now. But if anyone votes not guilty,
we stay here and talk it out. That's it. If you want to
try it, I'm ready. All right, let's
do it the hard way. Yeah, that's it. That sounds fair. Everyone agree? Anyone doesn't agree? Fine, let's go. Here, pass these along. Is that the right [inaudible]? [music playing] I don't think I have ever
dealt with a situation of that brutality
that that incident with the little
girl on the train. I knew that people
could behave badly, but I didn't know that people
could behave that badly. It was the kind of thing that
I could have only envisioned in a book, but never could
have envisioned actually happening because
it was a descent into a kind of bestiality. And I'll bet you, 10 to
one-- these weren't beasts, that when they
went home on leave, there was the sweet girl next
door and every other cliche. I said, no, and then
the whole wrestle with do I do anything about this? And of course I didn't. It's a kind of self-loathing
that comes when you've done terrible things in your life. I guess that's probably as bad
as anything I've ever done. And I went back into my
compartment and sat down. And then when we
got to the camp, the same compartment opened
and this hand came out and he put her down onto the
station platform, very gently. He didn't throw her or
anything, but that was it. And you know it's
clearly a situation that has stayed with me all my life. I think that kind of heroic
belongs in "High Noon." I think that's a romantic
movie version of life. When you are standing there
and there are eight men around, or nine men, all of whom
are in one stage or another of sexual anticipation
or sexual depletion, and if you think you're
going to make a dent in that without getting thrown
off the train moving, you have to be ready to give up
your life at a moment like that and I wasn't going to do that. [music playing] Through my
appearance here today, I hope that police
officers in the future will not experience the same
frustration and anxiety that I was subjected to for
the past five years at the hands of my superiors
because of my attempt to report corruption. I was made to feel
that I had burdened them with an unwanted task. The problem is that the
atmosphere does not yet exist in which an honest police
officer can act without fear of ridicule or reprisal. SIDNEY LUMET: I was constantly
being attacked for not having a thematic line in
the work and doing many different kinds of movies. It's nonsense. There is always a bedrock
concern about is it fair? In order to ensure this,
an independent, permanent investigative body
dealing with police corruption like this
commission is essential. [applause] [music playing] So these complications,
when enough of them exist over a long
enough period of time, you look up one day, like
I do, and my god, I'm 83. Look how I spent my time. I spent my time on a pendulum. And because nature is
kind, the painful moments are not that painful,
and the joyful moments are not that joyful. For me, it all
flattens out a little. And you know what? That's perfectly all right. I did the other. I did the peaks and the
valleys and you know what? You get used to that too. It's a bore. What I have found out for
myself, I'm not unique at all. I'm lucky to have
work that I care about and the opportunity to do it. [music playing] [train whistle] [music playing] [music playing]