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Find Me Guilty (2006)

Cast: Vin Diesel, Vin Diesel, Peter Dinklage, more...
Director: Sidney Lumet, Sidney Lumet
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Rating:
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Genre: Comedies, Drama, Courtroom
Running Time: 124 min.
Languages: English
Subtitles: English, Spanish
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Synopsis
A wise guy turns his own trial upside down by serving as his own lawyer in this comedy drama based on a true story. In 1987, an extensive investigation into the activities of the Lucchese crime family led to charges being filed against most of the key members of the gang, leading to the prosecution of 20 different men, each represented by their own council. That is, except for Giacomo DiNorscio, aka Jackie Dee (Vin Diesel), a longtime Lucchese family "mechanic" implicated in everything from kidnapping to drug dealing. While Jackie Dee is obviously a common criminal and guilty of all he's charged with, he also has a fierce sense of loyalty to his colleagues, despite the fact his cousin Tony Companga (Raul Esparza) previously tried to kill him out of fear he might talk. Sean Kierney (Linus Roache), the prosecutor tackling the Lucchese Family case, tries repeatedly to persuade Jackie Dee to testify against his partners in exchange for leniency, but he stubbornly refuses. Tired of the way things are being handled, Jackie Dee informs family attorney Ben Klandis (Peter Dinklage) that he intends to represent himself in court; this seemingly suicidal move turns into an unexpected success as Jackie Dee's sense of humor and streetwise charm has a remarkable impact on the judge and jury. Find Me Guilty also stars Ron Silver, Alex Rocco, and Annabella Sciorra. ~ Mark Deming, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

Finding the Fun in the Sleaze by talltale July 21, 2006 - 9:54 AM PDT
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Sidney Lumet should be a national treasure, New York City-variety at least. From "12 Angry Men" through "Serpico," "Dog Day Afternoon," "The Verdict," "Prince of the City" and many others, as director and sometimes producer and writer, he's given us more good movies about the city--its cops, crooks and courts--than anyone else. FIND ME GUILTY continues this winning streak, and it's one of Lumet's best (he'll be 83 on his next birthday; have any other filmmakers remained this creative this long in life?. Maybe Portugal's Manoel de Oliveira--who is 98!)

In addition to offering Vin Diesel the opportunity to get back to good acting, which Diesel does in spades, the amazing Lumet is also able to (and able to make us) hold two opposing ideas in mind simultaneously: that the murdering scumbag swine known as the Mafia deserve to be rounded up and put away forever (Linus Roache's mid-movie monolog on this subject is brilliant and classic), and that people as colorful, funny and fascinating as these swine can be quite wonderful to watch. If nothing else (and there's a lot else), Lumet convinces you how and why--spoiler ahead!--judgment went the way it did at the end of this trial, the longest in American criminal court history. I would hope and pray something this important never goes this way again, but I can sure see why, back in the 1970s, it did.

Watch the very short, pointed and interesting interview with Lumet on the Special Features. "Find Me Guilty" tanked at the box-office upon theatrical release but has already quadrupled its worldwide take after just three weeks on DVD. Oh, yes: Someone please start the campaign now for Mr. Diesel as a Best Actor nominee, 2006. It's nearing August; has anyone come close to the gold standard of this performance?




GreenCine Member Rating
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(Average 5.25)
20 Votes
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