It's all in the movie's execution and character development. Via Top2040, are the 20 best Courtroom drama movies in cinema history:
1 - Witness for the Prosecution (1957) Marlene Dietrich in Billy Wilder's fascinating film adaptation of the classic Agatha Christie story.
2 - To Kill a Mockingbird (1962) Gregory Peck plays an attorney who defends a black man framed for the rape of a white woman in the racist South.
3 - 12 Angry Men (1957) A big star cast, 12 jurors are locked in deliberation and rehash the case before them. Gradually their opinions on the case begin to change.
4 - Murder in the First (1995) Kevin Bacon stars as an Alcatraz inmate arrested for stealing $5, who was tortured and locked in solitary confinement for years beyond the legal limit. Upon release from 3 years of solitary confinement in a dark hole, he lashes out and kills another inmate with a spoon. His attorney defends him, and tries the Alcatraz system for the murder.
5 - The Verdict (1982) Paul Newman takes a riveting medical malpractice case to trial rather than settle.
6 - ...And Justice for All (1979) Al Pacino is a lawyer forced to defend a judge he despises, and is disgusted by the corruption of the legal system in Baltimore. Quote: "The whole trial is out of order!"
7 - Anatomy of a Murder (1959) One of the first Hollywood movies to address rape in a courtroom movie. A gripping trial of a defendant who claims temporary insanity, because the victim had raped the defendant's wife.
8 - My Cousin Vinny (1992) Joe Pesci, Marisa Tormei. The only comedy on our list - the trial of two boys wrongly accused of robbing a convenience store.
9 - A Few Good Men (1992) Jack Nicholson, Tom Cruise. The trial of 2 soldiers who, under orders from above, hazed and caused the death of another recruit. "You can't handle the truth!"
10 - A Time to Kill (1996) Samuel L. Jackson. Mathew McConaughey defends a black man accused of murdering the two men who raped his daughter in Mississippi.
11 - The Jagged Edge (1985) Jeff Bridges. Glen Close defends a man accused of murdering his wife.
12 - The Accused (1988) Jodie Foster plays a rape victim who goes to trial against her attackers.
13 - Presumed Innocent (1990) Harrison Ford, Raul Julia
14 - Philadelphia (1993) Tom Hanks, Denzel Washington.
15 - Runaway Jury (2003), starring John Cusack, Gene Hackman, Dustin Hoffman.
16 - In Cold Blood (1967) based on the true case and book by Truman Capote.
17 - True Believer (1989) James Woods, Robert Downey Jr.
18 - The Rainmaker (1997) Matt Damon, Danny DeVito, directed by Francis Ford Coppola.
19 - Small Sacrifices (1989) Farrah Fawcett plays in the true story of Diane Downs convicted of killing her own children.
20 - A Civil Action (1998) Robert Duvall and John Travolta
Honorable Mention: Find Me Guilty (2006) Sydney Lumet's true story of mobster Jack DiNorscio on trial. It has some interesting scenes for a courtroom drama.
Check out more Thrillers, Trials and Crime movies at Top2040.com
The Best Courtroom Dramas and Case Trial Movies at Top2040