Tuesday, March 12, 2024

Movie Quote of the Day (‘The Verdict,’ on Doubt and Faith in Institutions and the Law)

[Frank is giving his summation to the jury]

Frank Galvin [played by Paul Newman]: “You know, so much of the time we're just lost. We say, ‘Please, God, tell us what is right; tell us what is true.’ And there is no justice: the rich win, the poor are powerless. We become tired of hearing people lie. And after a time, we become dead... a little dead. We think of ourselves as victims... and we become victims. We become... we become weak. We doubt ourselves, we doubt our beliefs. We doubt our institutions. And we doubt the law. But today you are the law. You ARE the law. Not some book... not the lawyers... not the, a marble statue... or the trappings of the court. See, those are just symbols of our desire to be just. They are... they are, in fact, a prayer: a fervent and a frightened prayer. In my religion, they say, ‘Act as if ye had faith... and faith will be given to you.’ IF... if we are to have faith in justice, we need only to believe in ourselves. And ACT with justice. See, I believe there is justice in our hearts.” [He sits down]—The Verdict (1972), screenplay by David Mamet and Jay Presson Allen (uncredited), adapted from the novel by Barry Reed, directed by Sidney Lumet

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