Below are lists of some films with law or human rights related themes. Please do suggest films for inclusion on this page which go beyond the lists below.
12 Angry Men: This film, based on a play, examines a jury’s deliberations. As they begin, only one juror seems to doubt the guilt of the defendant. The film explores themes of rational deliberation, the role of emotion and prejudice.
A Man for All Seasons: A film based on the play by Bolt,on the life and death of Sir Thomas More. It addresses such themes as freedom of conscience and the rule of law. Notable scenes include More on the legitimacy of extending the protection of law to the devil, and More’s comments on Parliament’s legislative competence during the trial.
Anatomy of a Murder: role of a defence lawyer in a murder trial
An Inspector Calls: An inspector interrupts a family gathering, to investigate the links between the family and the suicide of a young woman. The film raises questions about our moral responsibility for others.
Dirty Pretty Things: The film portrays the lives of migrants in London, and finishes with a blistering criticism of attitudes towards migrants.
Battle of Algiers: A dramatisation of one of the key incidents during the Algerian War of Independence, it addresses the topics of torture and decolonisation. Reportedly the film was shown to senior officials during the George W Bush presidency.
Let Justice be Done: Provides an insider’s view of the French jury.
Inherit the Wind: Fictionalised account of the Monkey Trial
Judgement at Nuremberg: Role of judges in a totalitarian state
Philadelphia: homophobia and discrimination
The Siege: An eerily prescient film considering the aftermath of a US operation in the Middle East and a terrorist attack on New York.
More Films (Thanks for the suggestions!)
Casualties of War: rape/war
Black Hawk Down: peacekeeping
District 9: refugees/discrimination
Call Me Kuchu: Gay rights, Uganda and HR defenders
The Pipe: Protest and the environment
Legally Blonde: Ethical issues, perjury, legal education