The Young Savages

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Released 1961

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Movie Summary

Director:
John Frankenheimer
Released:
1961
Rating:
The Young Savages is the 1961 crime drama based on the novel by Evan Hunter (The Birds), directed by filmmaking legend John Frankenheimer (The Manchurian Candidate). Three young gang members invade Puerto Rican territory and stab a blind boy to death. They claim self-defense, but it turns out the knife the victim was wielding was a harmonica. The case plays big in the press, and prosecutor Hank Bell (Burt Lancaster) gets the job of sending the three to the electric chair. But there are complications. One of the accused is the son of Mary diPace (Shelly Winters), who used to date. And his wife (Dina Merrill), who's a Limousine Liberal, staunchly opposes the death penalty. As Bell delves into the case, he finds discrepancies. diPace's son, it seems, is no racist. The victim served as a sort of arms-courier to his sighted brethren, and the star witness for the prosecution, his grieving sister, turns out to be a 16-year old hooker. This is bad news for Bell's boss, opportunistic District Attorney R. Daniel Cole (Edward Andrews), who wants the case to be his launching pad to the governor's mansion. But Hank, visibly suffering the pangs of conscience, decides to pursue The Truth.moreless
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    Legal, Crime, Classics