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Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Presumed innocent (released in 1990) - starring Harrison Ford, John Spencer, and Brian Dennehy - a prosecutor charged with murder

This is a 1990 film adaptation of the best-selling novel of the same name by Scott Turow. It was directed by Alan J. Pakula, the film stars Harrison Ford, John Spencer, Brian Dennehy, Raul JuliĆ”, Bonnie Bedelia, Paul Winfield and Greta Scacchi.
The lead character is Rozat "Rusty" Sabich who is a prosecutor of Kindle county and the right hand man of the chief prosecutor Raymond Horgan. He is shocked by the murder of his ex-mistress Carolyn Polhemus and is put in charge of the investigation by Horgan. Polhemus had dumped Sabich after learning about his friend ship with Horgan and his lack of ambition. Sabich had since made up with his wife Barbara but could not erase Polhemus from his mind. The head of homicide Tommy Molto has left to assist Nico Della Guardia in his election campaign. Both Molto and Della Guardia are enemies of Sabich.
As the investigation progresses incriminating evidence come up against Sabich. This included Beer glasses with his finger prints, Carpet threads from his home and sperm recovered from the body of Polhemus are incriminating evidences. These proofs even turns Horgan against Sabich and he feels that Sabich had taken charge to in the case to cover up the investigation trail against him. Sabich is truly trapped and calls his friend Lipranzer to narrow the investigation to keep his affair with Polhemus away from the case. But more bad news arrive with Della Guardia's victory. Both Guardia and Molto aggressively pursue the evidence and try to frame Sabich.



In his desperation Sabich enlists the help of his rival attorney Stern to help him. Stern soon starts chipping at the evidence. He notices that the beer glass has been missing as evidence and persuades the Judge Lyttle to keep this from the Jury. Lipranzer also find evidence that Polhemus was acting as a courier for an high official in a bribery scandal. The high official turns to be Judge Lyttle. The missing beer glass and other evidences make the defense arguments weak and Lyttle fairly dismisses the case against Sabich. Stern tells Sabich about the bribery scandal and tells him that Lyttle is essentially a good judge and deserves a chance.
Sabich is highly bitter as he feels that the stain of murder is not completely not washed from his head. But in an unusual twist while gardening he comes across vials of Blood and Polhemus's hair. He confronts his wife Barbara with the evidence. Barbara confesses that she had fallen in to depression after his affair with Polhemus and had killed the mistress to avenge her shame. She had planted the beer glasses and the carpet threads to frame Sabich.
Sabich is stunned but cannot bring himself to to separate Barbara from their son and he tosses the evidence out. This movie did an average business at the box office. It won the Edgar Allan Poe award for best film and was favorite with the critics. A good movie if you are a action buff and are interested in court room intrigues.

Presumed innocent (released in 1990) - starring Harrison Ford, John Spencer, and Brian Dennehy - a prosecutor charged with murder

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