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Find Me Guilty (R)

Release Date: March 17th, 2006 by Yari Film Group.
The Cast: Vin Diesel, Peter Dinklage, Linus Roache, Ron Silver, Annabella Sciorra, Alex Rocco, Jerry Adler, Raul Esparza.
Directed by Sidney Lumet.

BASIC PREMISE: Faced with charges of mob crimes, Jack (Diesel), a member of the Lucchese mafia, chooses to defend himself in court.

ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: Vin Diesel gives, by far, the best performance of his career. In The Pacifier and Boiler Room , he attempted to enter the comedy and drama genres, respectively. Obviously he has already mastered the action genre in XXX. Here, he combines his skill for comedy along with drama to portray a surprisingly appealing character and unique character, Jack DiNorscio. He delivers many memorable, witty lines thanks to a very strong script. In turn, it’s very easy and fun to root for Jack and to laugh along with him when he pokes fun at the court case—which is quite often. Even the supporting actors turn a decent performance such as Linus Roache as the prosecutor, Ron Silver as the judge, and a barely recognizable Annabella Sciorra as Jack’s ex-girlfriend. The plot does sound outrageous at first, but, fortunately, it never gets to silly because of the high-tempered judge who gives Jack a strict warning to compose his behavior from the very beginning. As tempting as it is, it’s not worth spoiling any of Jack’s memorable courtroom antics here. What makes Find Me Guilty even more fun than expected is that the trial itself progresses in such an unpredictable yet easy to follow way. Director Sidney Lumet maintains a brisk pace and wisely skips ahead many days throughout the trial to avoid tediousness—after all, this isn’t based on a John Grisham novel. Yet, the characters and plot are so richly textured, you would think it were indeed based on a novel. Rather, it’s just based on a true story, but masterfully turned into a highly entertaining film.

SPIRITUAL VALUE: The ending feels satisfying without being too sugar-coated. Other than that, nothing is required or desired.



IN A NUTSHELL: The new My Cousin Vinny! Vin Diesel delivers a knockout performance!

RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: Movie Theater (1st Run

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