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Judgment at Nuremberg

Judgment at Nuremberg (1961) - Stanley Kramer

Brief sinopsis: Four German judges are trialed for the crimes against the humanity they commited under National Socialist regime.

When making a film with historical importance like this one, there's always a danger of a filmaker getting too preachy and pushing his own propaganda, but I'm pleased to say that's not the case with Judgment at Nuremberg. One of its greatest attributes is it actually ,examined the facts and happenings from different perspectives and provided an impressive study on thoughts and actions of German people who found themselves under Nazi dictatorship.

I was particularly impressed with powerful performances, which this film was filled with. Maximilian Schell gave a strong performance, as a charismatic and strong willed court defendant. His acting was so persuasive that he even managed to remain symphatetic at times. The scenes where he interrogated Judy Garland's character were especially intense.

Than there are some performances from the supporting cast which were really touching. Especially the ones by Montgomery Clift and Judy Garland, who were masterful at portraying victims of the Nazi regime. Their display of emotions during the interrogations scenes was devastating and heart wrenching.

The film features some giants of the cinema aswell like: Spencer Tracy, Richard Widmark, Burt Lancaster and Marlene Dietrich. What I especially liked about Lancaster's character was that eventough he first real spoken 2 hours in the movie, he managed to remain a powerful presence by displaying his tortured sole persona mainly through face expressions.

I also have high praise for Kramer's direction and sharply written screenplay by Abby Mann. If I had to cherry pick I'd say I wasn't really a fan of the dramatic close up shots, eventough I thought they were properly suited in some scenes.

The emotional response that Judgment at Nuremberg brings shouldn't be understated aswell .The scene in which they showed real holocaust footage was particularly unsettling and difficult to watch.

Lastly I'd like to mention a great pacing that this film possesses. With being 3 hours long I was astonished with how invested I managed to remain throughout its entire course.

Truly an exceptional film !