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Find Me Guilty

  • compiled by Jeffrey Overstreet Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2006 1 Jan
Find Me Guilty

from Film Forum, 03/23/06

Director Sidney Lumet (Dog Day Afternoon) returns after a seven-year absence with Find Me Guilty, this courtroom drama about a late-'80s court case that lasted two years. Among the 20 men accused of criminal activity in that New Jersey debacle, one (played by Vin Diesel) insisted on representing himself, and he put on quite a show, maddening the judge (Ron Silver) and a mob kingpin (Alex Rocco).

Christian critics have yet to catch up with the film, with the exception of Harry Forbes (Catholic News Service). He says, "At least in The Sopranos or The Godfather, there's character development, as in the most textured dramas dealing with unsavory anti-heroes (think Shakespeare's Richard III). By contrast, Jackie and his fellow goons are one-dimensional. The seamy story and milieu and nonstop expletives further undermine a well-made, but morally ambiguous film."

Mainstream critics disagree on the verdict.