I regard Billy Wilder‘s Witness for the Prosecution as a comfort movie. I’ll watch the Bluray ever now and then, mainly to savor Charles Laughton‘s performance as Sir Wilfrid Robarts. (“I am surprised, my Lord, that the testament did not leap from her hands when she swore on it!”) Now Ben Affleck wants to direct and star in a new version…please. Everybody knows the twist so what’s the point? I’ll summarize for those who don’t know this 1957 film: a brilliant defense attorney gets faked out by his client. If you ask me Gregory Hoblit‘s Primal Fear (’96) did this just as well if not better than Witness for the Prosecution. It’s 20 years old and getting dustier by the minute — why not remake that? Or come up with some new variation on this rather old and familiar theme.
Billy Wilder praising Agatha Christie‘s “very good plotting” of Witness for the Prosecution: “For every 500 writers who are great with dialogue, there are five who are great at crafting good construction [of a plot]. It’s the toughest job in the world.” [Go to 3:30 mark.]