The Man in the Glass Booth (Shaw) - American Film Theatre, 1975
Title: The Man in the Glass Booth
Playwright: Robert Shaw
Media Download Available: Digital Video (DVD)
Quality & Size: Excellent/ Professional (1.42 GB)
Duration: 2 hours
Details: Director Arthur Hiller (Love Story, Silver Streak), working from screenwriter Edward Anhalt's (Becket) adaptation, transforms actor/playwright Robert Shaw's The Man in the Glass Booth into a film the Los Angeles Times dubbed, "daring, outrageous, utterly provocative, endlessly ambiguous and strikingly effective."
Millionaire Jewish entrepreneur Arthur Goldman (Maximilian Schell) benevolently rules his financial empire from a penthouse apartment overlooking Manhattan. Seemingly at the edge of sanity, Goldman holds forth on everything from Papal edicts to ex-wives, from baseball to his family's massacre in a Nazi concentration camp. When Goldman remarks on a blue Mercedes continuously parked outside his building, Goldman's captive audience of assistant (Lawrence Pressman) and chauffeur (Henry Brown) dismiss their boss' anxiety as encroaching paranoia. But each of Goldman's passionate, seemingly capricious ravings are transformed into a shocking, inadvertent deposition when Israeli agents capture Goldman and put him on trial as Adolph Dorf, the commandant of the concentration camp where Goldman's family was supposedly exterminated.
In a trial scene of unrelenting intensity, Academy Award winner Schell (Judgement at Nuremburg) crafts what The Detroit Free Press called "a white-hot lead performance," mutating from eccentric Goldman to sociopathic Dorf and beyond. The riddle of Dorf's true identity becomes wrapped in an enigma of cunning self-treachery and single minded obsession. Veteran cinematographer Sam Leavitt enables Hiller to coax a vividly personal and electrifyingly intelligent dual portrait out of Schell. The Man in the Glass Booth is a timeless drama of surprising intimacy and indefatigable courage, "possessing," declared the LA Times "a remarkably resilient sense of lightness for all the profound questions it ponders."
- Lois Nettleton as Miriam Rosen
- Lawrence Pressman as Charlie Cohn
- Luther Adler as Presiding Judge
- Lloyd Bochner as Dr. Churchill
- Robert H. Harris as Dr. Weisburger
- Henry Brown as Jack
- Norbert Schiller as Dr. Schmidt
- Berry Kroeger as Joachim Berger
- Leonardo Cimino as Dr. Alvarez
- Connie Sawyer as Mrs. Levi