Twelve Angry Men: A Critical Review

2122 words - 8 pages

Is it really possible for one person with a belief that is found inferior to the majority to persuade that majority to change the way they think and feel and take on a completely different perception? Politicians would like us to believe so with advertisements and slogans like "your vote counts." And environmentalists would like us to believe so with "only you can prevent forest fires." These sayings lead the public to believe that it is up to them to change the minds of each and every person out there that disagrees with what they feel is right and pursue them to conform to their convictions.But in a realistic world, is that possible? Can one person change the minds of eleven others when what they feel and believe has already been set in stone and engraved on their hearts? Twelve Angry Men poses this question and provides an answer. And although it is obviously done with a Hollywood spin, the situation is fairly credible.In this scenario, the only thing that juror number eight had going for him was reason, the force behind group polarization. He went in with doubts on his mind with eleven other men that had no doubts what-so-ever and came out having sueded the majority to conform to his perception of the story. Never did he once say that he believed the boy to be innocent, yet it almost seems as if the eleven other men walk out of that room believing that he was.Although each juror stood out in his own right, they were each able to catch my eye for different reasons. It was almost as if a smaller drama was being played out in cahoots with the overall picture. Almost every juror went into that room with a preconceived notion and/or prejudice of the young Hispanic boy on trial. Juror number one moderated the discussion. I saw him as low on the totem pole on the list of jurors even though he was "in charge" of keeping order in the conversation that existed. He was very quiet, but seemed as though he contemplated everything that was being said and made mental notes. Though he did have one or two outbursts of his own, he was level headed and well mannered. Still, something about him bothered me. He never really felt strongly (or at least showed no strong emotion) about the matter at hand. He never stated his reasoning, just sort of vicariously lived through other members of the jury if you will.As for juror number two, my feelings were somewhat the same. He did speak his mind on a few occasions, but the only time that stood out was when he was putting juror number ten in his place. I do not think this had an effect on his view of the boy on trial because he did not seem to view all younger men as disrespectful.Juror number three had an obvious prejudice toward the trial and the connection between the way he felt about his own son and the relationship between the boy on trial and his deceased father was blatantly portrayed from the beginning. Juror number eight pointed this out early in their discussions, but he did not actually express his true...

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