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Movies on Trial: The Legal System on the Silver Screen Hardcover – June 1, 2002

4 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

When many people show up for jury duty, they expect a scenario akin to what they saw in Twelve Angry Men. Arguing that civilians' perception of American law is largely shaped by representations of it in motion pictures and TV, law professor Chase (Law and History) explores films that deal with criminal law, civil law, international law, interpretations of the Constitution and more. He dissects well-known law-related movies such as Dirty Harry and Judgement at Nuremberg as well as more unlikely ones, including Fight Club and Flashdance. Serious in tone, this will be of interest to law-practicing film buffs.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

A professor at Nova Southeastern University Law Center in Florida, Anthony Chase is the author of Law and History. His work on popular legal culture has appeared in the Wisconsin Law Review, the Yale Journal of Law and Humanities, and the Velvet Light Trap Review of Cinema.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 204 pages
  • Publisher: The New Press (June 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1565847008
  • ISBN-13: 978-1565847002
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.8 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,023,949 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is completely different than I expected. From its cover and the "official" reviews, I thought that it would be an enjoyable and easy read. It is not. Nonetheless, its analysis-- while not what I was looking for-- is interesting, so I read it anyhow.
Just to give you an idea what you are getting into with this book, here is an extended quotation from Chapter 3: "If Hegel was right, an appreciation for dialectical oppositions can greatly enhance one's insight into the nature of existence, including the experience of historical development and change. Harvard law professor Duncan Kennedy, present at the creation of the critical legal studies movement, wrote a famous law-review article identifying a tension he saw running like a red thread through the history of American law: that between individualism and altruism. Historian Athur M. Schlesinger, Jr., has described American history as a whole in terms of the 'cycles of American politics,' an oscillation in governmental commitment to the public purpose against the private interest. ... Core genres within the culture of American legal cinema can similarly be portrayed in terms of a central and animating contradiction or dialectic specific to each."
Again, not the causal book about how the law has been portrayed in movies like I was expecting. Still, worthy of reading for those with the patience.
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