Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
In one of the finest and final performances of his distinguished career, Henry Fonda portrays Clarence Gideon, the destitute prisoner whose handwritten plea for justice changed the course of American legal history. Based on the book by Pulitzer Prize-winning author and journalist Anthony Lewis, Gideons Trumpet tells the remarkable human story behind the landmark "right to counsel" Supreme Court case.
Nominated for three Emmys® and winner of the prestigious Peabody Award, this powerful Hallmark Hall of Fame drama also features Oscar®- and Tony®-winner José Ferrer (Cyrano de Bergerac, The Caine Mutiny) as Abe Fortas, Oscar®-winner John Houseman (The Paper Chase, Rollerball) as Chief Justice Earl Warren, and Fay Wray (King Kong) in her final screen performance.
"Ranks with the best films of the early 1980s" -- All Movie Guide.
DVD SPECIAL FEATURES INCLUDE insert with production notes by Anthony Lewis and cast filmographies.
- Insert with production notes by Anthony Lewis
- Cast filmographies
Top Customer Reviews
Clarence Earl Gideon was no angel. He was a four time loser, who had been arrested for the burglary of a pool room. He did, however, maintain that he was innocent in this instance and demanded a trial, as he had no intention of pleading guilty for a crime that he did not commit. When Gideon, a semi illiterate, poorly educated man, requested an attorney to represent him at the trial, his request was denied, the presiding judge being of the mind that Gideon was able to represent himself. Gideon did not have a clue and, consequently, was convicted and sentenced to a five year prison term.
Gideon wrote an appeal to the United States Supreme Court, which granted his appeal, and its justices set a new precedent with their ruling. His case was remanded to the Florida state court for a retrial. He was appointed an attorney, tried and, ultimately, acquitted of all charges, deservedly so, based upon the evidentiary weakness of the case against him. Justice delayed, however, is, as always, justice denied, as Gideon ended up serving two years in prison for a crime that he did not commit, before he was finally freed.
This is a terrific film with wonderful performances by the entire cast. Henry Fonda is superlative as the stalwart Gideon, whose innate sense of fair play and faith in the United States Constitution helped shape the legal system that we know today. This is a film well worth watching.
One is equally astonished that the High Court gave such consideration to a relatively minor infraction of the law, and in doing so, gave everyone like the obscure,impoverished Gideon the right to council regardless of their station in life.
As has been stated elsewhere, this film is both an entertaining and informative experience. It is a must see for law students and laymen alike.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Mostly a well acted portrayed of legal history and the right to an attorney when arrested - - even for small crimes.Published 4 months ago by John Stribling
Great movie.One of Mr. Fonda's best.Great actors in the movie.Was so nice to see a movie with no sound or special effects just great actors.Published 7 months ago by J.Blook
One of Henry Fonda's best performances.
Shipper was quick and packaged it carefully. Thank you.
Have you ever wanted justice so badly, that you're willing to go to court twice over the same, issue (Double Jeopardy)? Read morePublished on July 22, 2014 by Nina Kish
A terrific look at the American system of jurisprudence from bottom to top with a wonderfully understated performance by Henry Fonda and fine supporting roles played by John... Read morePublished on May 13, 2014 by Michael W. Wilson