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The best courtroom movie ever made!
Otto Preminger's look at machinations in the US Senate is full of tension and intrigue, as Charles Laughton's crusty southern senator seeks to sink the confirmation of Henry Fonda as Secretary of State. Fonda's character has been nominated by the possibly dying president (Franchot Tone) and his friend, the Senate Majority Leader (an excellent Walter Pidgeon), must work to get the votes lined up. When the confirmation moves to a subcommittee chaired by Utah Senator Brig Anderson (Don Murray), Laughton finds a witness (Burgess Meredith) to testify that Fonda once belonged to a communist discussion group. Meanwhile, another Senator (George Grizzard) has his own axe to grind when he isn't made the subcommittee chair. Peter Lawford, Lou Ayres, Will Geer, and Gene Tierney round out the starry cast. To tell more would probably be criminal - the screenplay based on Allen Drury's novel has a lot of twists and turns. Of course, there are clear links to real US politics - particularly the red-baiting tactics of Joe McCarthy; to that end, it is worth noting that Preminger selected Burgess Meredith and Will Geer for the cast because they had been blacklisted themselves. As always, Preminger seeks to break some taboos with his film - and again that particular plot twist is drawn from an actual event in US politics. This was Laughton's last film and he goes out with a nicely observed caricature.
Twisted, not manicheist or predictable, it is a show of management of power in Washington that goes through 3-4 chained stories. In some moments of the movie, it is easy to think you don't know what you are looking at but, at the end, it makes sense. Between 2.5 and 3 stars.
A great political thriller with an excellent cast , fine story and expert pace, dialogue and photography. A movie for real people, with no artifice. Otto Preminger makes politics riveting!
Made in the ultimate era of the political thriller (Seven Days in May, Manchurian Candidate, etc) this movie has grown on me through the years. It's not as good as the aforementioned duo but would be the best political movie in any other era. Superb acting and story-line.
You remember the gay bar scene, Manuel, Charles Laughton, and not much else. But those bits were good.
Well written and organized Advise and Consent's only problem is that it can be a dull political drama that seems too long.
Slow cooking political drama with an acceptable ending and small, but decent performances.
Now it is even worst...
+ Washington, DC. The more things stay the same, the more they don't change, except now there're many more women in the game - and what was hidden in this story until the 3rd Act is now full monty. + Surprising that in '62 that the choice was made to shoot wide-screen black-&-white - our last chance never to see Tierney's Newman blue eyes. And you'll never see a movie with more wandering camera shadows. Peter Lawford: What can be said. Gifted for ingratiating himself into a Rat Pack figure and laying the others' cast offs while playing "The Love Boat." + 15-minutes too long, there are good performances in the screen realization of the popular book that takes one back to the end of the Eisenhower era.