1962 Running time: 129 Certificate: pg Rating: 4


Award-winning classic drama starring Gregory Peck as a lawyer in the Deep South defending a black man accused of rape. With Mary Badham.


  • Robert Mulligan


  • Gregory Peck

  • Philip Alford

  • Mary Badham

  • Estelle Evans

  • Robert Duvall

  • John Megna


Gregory Peck finally won a Best Actor Oscar, at the fifth time of being nominated, for his compassionate performance in this classic race-hate drama, directed by Robert Mulligan from Horton Foote's script (which won the film's other Oscar).

Peck gives a fine character reading of a lawyer and widowed father of two children, who has to defend a black man accused of raping a white girl in a Deep South town in the Thirties.

But it's the child actors who steal every scene in which they appear. Mary Badham, a nine-year-old who had never acted before, is truly charming as the tough little sister who tries to keep pace with her brother, but ends up having to wear a dress, however embarrassing it is to her.

This is still Peck's favourite film from a varied career.

Original author Harper Lee, who based the story on her own childhood experiences, was so pleased with his work that she gave him her father's pocket watch.

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