To Kill a Mockingbird

The Top 63 Marathon, part 11

Title: To Kill a Mockingbird
Year: 1962
Length: 129 minutes
Director: Robert Mulligan
Writer: Horton Foote, based on the novel by Harper Lee
Starring: Gregory Peck, Mary Badham, Phillip Alford, Brock Peters, James Anderson
Music: Elmer Bernstein
Distinctions: Oscars for Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Actor (Peck) and Best Art Direction/Set Decoration (black-and-white); Oscar nominations for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Supporting Actress (Badham), Best Cinematography (black-and-white) and Best Score; currently #52 on the IMDb’s Top 250

My reaction
Synopsis: a single father is the defense attorney for a black man in the south
How I saw it: on video (rented from Netflix), yesterday
Concept: Indifferent.
Story: Good. I would have liked it a lot more if it had focused on the trial, instead of all the business with the kids and Boo Radley. I never really feel like I’m seeing things from the kids’ perspective, so they end up feeling like a distraction from the “adult” story.
Characters: Great.
Dialog: Great.
Pacing: Good. Again, I wanted more grown-up drama and less kiddie shenanigans. After the trial’s over and the narrator starts talking about Boo Radley again, it’s like we’ve switched to a different movie.
Cinematography: Great.
Special effects/design: Great. The IMDb’s trivia claims that this was not filmed on location; the entire town is a huge set.
Acting: Great. How is it that Brock Peters didn’t have a more notable career?
Music: Good.
Subjective Rating: 8/10 (Great).
Objective Rating: 3.5/4 (Very good).


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