Past

The Forum Film Was A Success!

This year’s Forum Film Festival was a great success. To read about it, check out this coverage in a number of the country’s top publications:

The Economist on “Too Big To Fail.”

The New York Times’ Dealbook on “Wall Street.”

The New York Law School’s Law and Journalism Blog on “Kramer vs. Kramer”

The Forward and The Tablet on “Daniel.”

Capital on “Absence of Malice.”


11 Angry Men and the Reasonable Man

By Graham Amodeo With the release of a Blu-Ray version of 12 Angry Men, it is worth revisiting this film, which was part of last year‘s Forum Film Festival. U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor even said that this film had an incredible influence (click on the link and scroll down to her video) on her legal career. Sidney Lumet’s 12 Angry Men presents an interesting example of the points at which the law and morality diverge. The divergence occurs in what one might think would be an unlikely location: a jury deliberation room. In the film 12 strangers, pressed into public service as jurors, attempt to decide the fate of a young man who is accused of murdering his father. In the process, a legally “correct” result (12 jurors agreeing as to guilt or innocence) nearly results in a moral travesty, until the morally righteous (and nameless, until the


Farewell to "In the Arena"

By Chloe Sarnoff Recently, CNN announced that Eliot Spitzer‘s show, “In the Arena” will be cancelled and replaced by “Anderson Cooper’s 360,” which will be moved into the 8pm time slot. Spitzer’s show has been around since October of 2010 and was originally entitled “Parker Spitzer,” and was co-hosted by Kathleen Parker.  Parker was fired from the show when ratings proved to be less than desirable and the title was changed to “In the Arena”.  Ratings are also to blame for CNN’s decision to cancel “In the Arena.” Unfortunately, Spitzer’s quick and interesting approach to his show seems to have been unable to appeal to a wide enough audience.  The cancellation of “In the Arena” is a true loss to anyone and everyone who is able to appreciate the smart, thorough and insightful interviews that Spitzer held over the course of the past year.  The Forum, who hosted Spitzer as


Indiscretions. Repercussions. Men in Power.

By Erica Zaragoza Representative Anthony D. Weiner, a rising star of the Democratic Party, from New York, announced Thursday he would be resigning in the wake of his lewd photo scandal. The salacious activities that have enveloped men of power, on both sides of the isle, have left party leaders with no choice but to denounce personal behavior that negatively effects the reputation of the offices they hold. The moratorium on detrimental personal activities was meant to weed out the disingenuous and corrupt on Capitol Hill. Being a constituent of Weiner, living only blocks away from his apartment, I had the opportunity to see both sides of the controversy surrounding the Congressman. Many members of my community were outraged that House Dem. leasers Nancy Pelosi and Debbie Wasserman Schultz made public statements urging Weiner to step down immediately. Many of his constituents believe Weiner has precipitated a series of positive


Sidney Lumet Dies at 86

Memories from the Forum Sidney Lumet died Saturday at the age of 86 (see New York Times obituary). Clip from the Conversation with Sidney Lumet and Tom Fontana. Clip from the Forum Film Festival with Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. See New York Times coverage of Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor at the Forum Film Festival. Photo of Sidney Lumet at the Forum’s first Conversation with Tony Kushner and E.L. Doctorow. Photos of Sidney Lumet as the Forum’s Conversation guest (also pictured, Tom Fontana). Film of Sidney Lumet with Thane Rosenhaum at the 92nd Street Y. Why Sidney Lumet Fought the Law April 11, 2011 By Thane Rosenbaum Legendary New York film director, Sidney Lumet, who had been nominated for five Academy Awards before winning one for lifetime achievement in 2005, died this past Saturday at the age of 86. He directed over 50 films and another 200 teleplays during


Insightful Testimonies of The Conversation with Dylan McDermott

I thought the conversation with Dylan McDermott last night was a great event and huge success. I wanted to share an observation briefly on the conversation itself.  I thought there was an interesting change that happened relatively early into the program.  For the first 5-10 minutes it seemed very much like you were interviewing Dylan McDermott the television and film star.  That conversation had certain limitations for the forum (Forum) you were in.  He came across as a man with little to say.  But then Dylan McDermott the artist showed up and everything changed very quickly.  Suddenly he appeared as a man who thought deeply about the world and his place in it.  The moment in the conversation that it happened was when he invoked his trip to the Congo.  After that exchange his answers began to explore the ideas that one would associate with the Forum and with a


25 Greatest Legal Films

As the public’s fascination with the law and judicial process increases so does the curiosity to study those legal films thought to exhibit the quintessential trials and tribulations of the legal profession. The ABA Journal satisfied this curiosity, in 2008, when it published its top 25 greatest law films ever made. The Forum on Law Culture and Society complements our culture’s inquiry by featuring pertinent legal films during the annual Forum Film Festival at Fordham Law. The Forum and ABA Journal are definitely in agreement about the existential appeal that exists to the drama, morality, curiosity, and honorable side of lawyers. Many heads despondently shake when “lawyer” and “honorable” are used in the same sentence, but alas, the legendary Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird, nominated by the ABA Journal as the best classic legal film ever produced, and the Forum’s 2007 feature movie. Atticus Finch depicts a morally


Time For a Change With Parker Spitzer

Author: Michael Cromer The Parker Spitzer show has posted weak numbers since the show’s start in October 2010. While CNN hoped the numbers would improve, the Parker Spitzer show is only averaging 468,000 viewers. At the same 8 PM time slot that Parker Spitzer airs, Fox News is averaging 2.6 millions viewers and MSNBC is averaging 874,000 viewers. Interestingly, while Parker was out for a week due to a lung infection, the overall viewership for the Parker Spitzer show doubled. Although the turmoil in Egypt may have had to do with the increase in viewership, this was without a doubt the show’s strongest viewership since it launched in October. There can be no denying that the numbers have increased since Parker’s absence and there has been much speculation that CNN may be looking for a replacement. It seems to me that it’s time to make a change with the Parker


Jack Kevorkian Sounds Off

WWD.com covered Jack Kevorkian‘s appearance at the Fordham Law Film Festival. The full article follows or you can read it here. “You never think you’re going to get old until you’re old.” Kind of a curious statement coming from Jack Kevorkian, as he teetered down a flight of stairs at the HBO Theater recently for the Fordham Law Film Festival. But however diminishing his balance might be, his right-to-die crusade hasn’t waned one bit. In fact, the man who estimated 125 to 130 people killed themselves with his euthanasia devices is now questioning why there are so many living beings here to begin with. His latest book, “When the People Bubble POPs” tackles overpopulation, but not from the human aspect, “from nature’s aspect. That’s what counts — nature — not us, not we.” Even at 82, Kevorkian demonstrates he is still prone to shouting, finger-pointing and pressing on the arms


12 Angry People?

I saw 12 Angry Men for the fourth or fifth time at the Fordham Law Film Festival. Oddy, this was the first time that prompted me to think about how differently the deliberations might have gone had the jury been partially made up of women, or even all women. Perhaps in the past I had taken for granted the fact that in the1950′s, when the film was made, it was par for the course that juries would be comprised of men. Indeed, during the discussion after the screening, Justice Sotomayor noted that in recent history, women could excuse themselves as jurors simply because they were female. If the jury had been co-ed, would the result have been different? Would the vote have broken down along gender lines?It is hard to say, especially since it would be important to take the traditional gender roles of the 1950′s into account. Would the