Sunday, March 6, 2011

Cloris Leachman & Nick Nolte in Death Sentance 1974

Obscurity factor: 8

Susan Davies (Leachman) is delighted to have been selected to serve on the jury of murder suspect John Healy (Nolte), even though it interferes with her plans for a vacation with her husband (Lawrence Luckinbill). As the trial progresses she becomes more and more convinced of Healy's innocence, but an alternate theory of the crime begins to seep into her consciousness - a theory that at first seems so preposterous that she rejects it out of hand. But over time, the evidence for her theory starts to mount and seems to prove that her husband is the culprit. This Aaron Spelling production was one of those ubiquitous movies of the week that were run on all the networks back in the 70's, and while it's not a great film, it is an enjoyable little thriller. It's wonderful to see Cloris Leachman in a role so different from the comedies that made her famous, and also delightful to see Nick Nolte in a small role, so fresh and full of promise. Look for TV veterans William Shallert and Alan Oppenheimer as the attorneys in the case.
This film was released on DVD, spuriously touting Nick Nolte as the star back in 1999 and it can still be found on Amazon for pennies. If you're not expecting it to be a Nolte vehicle, it can be quite watchable. It's also available on YouTube in one big file. The post is above, uploaded by filmisnow.

Obscurity factor: 8 (available on DVD, almost totally forgotten)


  1. Wow, the whole film on You Tube? Isn't this virtually unheard of? What a quiet death in the beginning, nary a whimper from that love-sick blond girl... lol, you'd think she'd put up more of a struggle.

  2. She is a little passive, isn't she?