Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.5.
USA/Japan/United Kingdom, 1990. Sovereign Pictures, Reversal Films Inc., Shochiku-Fuji Company. Screenplay by Nicholas Kazan, based on the book by Alan Dershowitz. Cinematography by Luciano Tivoli. Produced by Edward R. Pressman, Oliver Stone. Music by Mark Isham. Production Design by Mel Bourne. Costume Design by Judianna Makovsky. Film Editing by Lee Percy.
This excellent film details the case of Sunny von Bulow (Glenn Close), a wealthy New York aristocrat who went into a coma after an excessive dose of insulin administered by her husband. Said Claus von Bulow (Jeremy Irons), an old European name possibly hiding a nefarious fortune hunter, is convicted of attempted murder and seeks the help of top attorney Alan Dershowitz (Ron Silver) to overturn the verdict on appeal. The film concentrates on Dershowitz and his assistants investigating the events leading up to von Bulow’s accident, with more emphasis on their preparation for the case instead of the actual trial itself. Barbet Schroeder’s direction is scintillating, and both Irons and Close give riveting performances.
Academy Award: Best Actor (Jeremy Irons)
Nominations: Best Director (Barbet Schroeder); Best Adapted Screenplay
Golden Globe Award: Best Actor-Drama (Jeremy Irons)
Nominations: Best Picture-Drama; Best Director (Barbet Schroeder); Best Screenplay