Heavens Fall (2006) - Rotten Tomatoes

Heavens Fall (2006)

Heavens Fall (2006)





Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

The tragic court case that forever altered the course of American jurisprudence is dramatized for the screen in this courtroom docudrama starring Timothy Hutton, David Straithairn, Leelee Sobieski, Anthomy Mack and Bill Sage. The year is 1931, and nine black hobos have been accused of raping two white women on an Alabama freight train. The accused, who all range in age from twelve to twenty-three, are quickly sentenced to death in the electric chair by an all-white jury fueled by racism and vengeance. But as news of the convictions spreads, something remarkable happens: the plight of the so-called Scottsboro Boys inadvertently ends up fueling the fires of socialism across the globe and the case is quickly appealed to the United States Supreme Court. As each of the nine defendants prepare for their retrials in a Decatur, Alabama courtroom, self-assured New York defense attorney Samuel Liebowitz (Hutton) accepts the formidable task of representing the accused in the trial that will hold an entire nation spellbound.
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Strata Productions


Timothy Hutton
as Samuel Leibowitz
Leelee Sobieski
as Victoria Price
Anthony Mackie
as William Lee
David Strathairn
as Judge James Horton
Bill Sage
as Thomas Knight Jr.
Azura Skye
as Ruby Bates
James Tolkan
as Thomas Knight Sr.
Bill Smitrovich
as George Chamlee
Maury Chaykin
as Lyle Harris
B.J. Britt
as Haywood Patterson
Francie Swift
as Belle Leibowitz
Artel Kayàru
as Willie Roberson
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Critic Reviews for Heavens Fall

All Critics (2) | Top Critics (1)

Heavens Fall tells its story with some interesting stylistic flourishes (a brisk montage of lawyers' closing arguments, for example) and without emotional manipulation.

April 19, 2006
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic

There's little to applaud and only a base "what a shame" kind of anger. All in all, Heavens Fall is an introduction to history; a prologue whose past should be better explored.

Full Review… | March 21, 2006

Audience Reviews for Heavens Fall

"Heavens Fall" is a courtroom drama that allows all of its background details to be revealed through the trial. Rather than spending the first 25 minutes dramatizing the crime, developing the characters of the lawyers and witnesses, and gathering evidence, the duration of the film is the trial and surprisingly, it works! You may not develop an attachment to the lawyer as you would in a film that contains heavy characer development, the the focus of this film is the trial and not the lawyers. This is emphasized by the film ending at the end of the trial, the fate of the characters revealed by several captions on screen. And again, I was completely okay reading the information on the screen instead of extending the film by 25 mintes to dramatize all of the after effects. The film offers strong performances by Timothy Hutton, David Strathairn, Bill Sage, and one incredible emotional moment from Azura Skye, while the shock that this unfair court case is a true story looms over the entire duration of the film. "Heavens Fall" provides insight into the famous Scottsboro Boys by bringing this famed court case to life and showing the bigotry in the Alabama court system of the 1930's. I'd definitely recommend it for its strong acting performances and interesting details of the trial.

Jonny Priano
Jonny Priano

It is similar in a way to "Kill A Mockingbird" and this TRUE case in Scottsboro, AL involving 9 young black teens of raping 2 white girls afraid of being found out to be hobos is a good story. Timothy Hutton was poorly cast, though everyone else really seemed good for their parts [maybe a bit less so for Leelee Sobieksi as the rape victim who stuck to her story].

Sue Smith
Sue Smith

a great depiction of the South and the way things used to be. While we aren't over racism yet, this movie depicts just how far we've come. This should be shown in high schools across the country..

Crydun2004 Crydun2004
Crydun2004 Crydun2004

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