Clarence Darrow (1974)

“You say my argument’s going in one ear and out the other? I’m not surprised – there’s nothing in between to stop it! ” – Clarence Darrow

Number of Times Seen – 1 (3 May 2020)

Brief Synopsis – One man stage show about the life and career of one of the most famous and successful lawyers in history.

My Take on it – This is a film that I had never even heard of before coming across it during my research on the career of Henry Fonda.

I have always been familiar with Clarence Darrow and his career as an attorney largely due to his role in the famous Scopes monkey trial.

In addition, I have always loved one man shows like this one that allow us to get a deeper understanding of the main character.

Within the past few years, I have seen screen adaptations of three one man shows on Harry Truman [Give ‘Em Hell Harry (1975)], Mark Twain – [Hal Holbrook – Mark Twain Tonight (1967)] and Thurgood Marshall [Thurgood (2011)] and really enjoyed them all.

THis film is also a screen adaptation of the one man pay on Darrow and they do a wonderful job giving us an overview of the life of this famous attorney.

Henry Fonda is perfect in this role and allows us to really savor the stories and anecdotes about Darrow’s career and life.

The dialogue is written really well and helps make us feel as if we are right there listening to all of the poignant stories about his career as a lawyer and of his life.

This is an amazing one man show that allows us to get an even better understanding of who Darrow was and why he is so integral to history.

This film lets us learn so much about his life, his career the law and why he was such a staunch fighter for justice for all no matter what.

Bottom Line – Amazing film that really gives us a powerful overview of the life of this famed attorney. Fonda is perfect in this role and really lets us savor in the stories and anecdotes of the life of this man. The dialogue is superbly written and they really make us feel as if we are right there with this character hearing about his cases and some very poignant stories along the way. This is a spectacular one-man show that really allows us to get an understanding of who this man was and how he got to the places he is known for in history.  We are able to learn so much about this man, the law and why the fight for justice was always foremost on his agenda. Highly Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Henry Fonda was nominated for the 1975 Tony Award (New York City) for Actor in a Drama for “Clarence Darrow”. (From IMDB)

Rating – Oscar Worthy (9/10)


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3 thoughts on “Clarence Darrow (1974)

  1. Written by the brother of one of my best friends. I also know David – who I ran into in NYC at a WGA strike meeting. He was quite familiar with my lawsuit over the credits on “The Last Samurai” since he was on the union Board of Directors at the time – and fought quite vocally on my behalf and was married to (and still is) the then President of the union – Vicki Riskin – the daughter of famed Hollywood screenwriter Robert Riskin (“It Happened One Night”, “Meet John Doe”, “Lost Horizon, “Mr Deeds Goes To Town”) and Fay Wray (yes – THAT Fay Wray, from “King Kong”) – quite the family tree. David, at the strike meeting, walked me over and introduced me to Nora Ephron (When Harry Met Sally), as “Michael Eddy – who got fucked over worse on a credit deal at the Guild than anyone I’ve ever heard of” to which Nora relied, “Talk to me…”


  2. Pingback: MovieRob Monthy Roundup – May 2020 | MovieRob

  3. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1974 | MovieRob

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