The Power of Three Perspectives One can be easily mislead or persuade in a direction they do not agree with. However this is not the case with Juror 8 (Mr. Davis) in the film 12 Angry Men. In this film, twelve jurors try to identify whether or not the convicted eighteen year-old boy is guilty of murdering his father with a switchblade knife. If the puerto-rican boy is found guilty, he will be sent to the electric chair and sentenced to death. The movie begins in the humid jury room by taking a vote to see whether or not the boy is guilty: eleven guilties and one not guilty.
He was the one to make everyone think differently, to think twice about the boy. While everyone was going against the boy and saying he’s guilty, juror number eight stood up for him saying he isn’t. Juror number eight states, “this boy's been kicked around all his life. You know - living in a slum, his mother dead since he was nine. He spent a year and a half in an orphanage
While both end up voting the same way, their approaches throughout the majority of the film are vastly different. To start, the third juror is much more factual, stating in the film, “Okay let’s get the facts… and he ran to the door of his apartment and the boy!”(12 Angry Men) This immediately shows the viewer that Juror 3 will base the majority of his argument in fact. In contrast, Juror 8 feels that communicating with the other jurors and piecing together their views is a better way to solve the case. This is shown when Juror 8 says, “There were eleven votes guilty. It’s not so easy for me to send a boy off to die without talking about it first.”(12 Angry Men) In the first difference, Juror 7 falls with Juror 3, believing much more of the facts than discussion.
Most of the jury was convinced the boy was guilty, but Juror 8 used relaxed tactics to change their minds. One of the last jurors to change his mind was Juror 3. He couldn’t be convinced at first, but eventually, he let Juror 8’s point sink in to add clarity. In addition, because of Juror 8’s civility, many jurors respected him. Juror 9 was one of the first jurors to show respect for Juror 8.
After watching 12 Angry Men, I was very inspired by juror 8 ' argument techniques. His eye contact, body language, tone, the persuasive techniques he used like induction, pathos, ethos and logos should be studied and analyzed in a very detailed, precise way. These factors were strong enough to change 11 angry men 's mind and to vote not guilty, even juror 3 who is the most stubborn. 12 Angry Men 's message toward individuals and the society as a whole is to think once and twice before judging, how to have a successful, convincing argument and most importantly, it encourage everyone to stand up for your opinion. One of the reasons why everyone should speak up is sometimes other people are thinking the same way, but they are not brave enough to express their opinion.
As the play went on, Juror Eight started proving how the boy was innocent. In the end Juror Eight changed all the other juror’s minds, except for Juror Three’s. Juror Three ended up changing his vote, not because they changed his mind but because he gave into peer pressure. He still had his prejudice influenced decision, he only gave in because he didn't want it to be a hung jury. Another example, from the same play, is Juror Eight.
Juror Three’s past experience with his father and how he “used to call him sir” reflects his beliefs on how a boy should treat their father (Rose 17). Not only that, but Juror Three’s relationship with his own son parallels his views onto the defendant of the case, which can clearly be seen since “When he was sixteen [they] had a battle. He hit [Juror Three] right in the face” (Rose 18). It being quite apparent how he has clouded judgment since he mirrors the emotions of his own “rotten kid”, onto the sixteen-year-boy on trial (Rose 18). Juror Three’s character background being the reason why he believes “Everyone knows this kid is guilty.
8th juror appeals to their sense of pathos and pity by saying “this boy’s been kicked around all his life…He’s had a pretty terrible sixteen years. I think maybe we owe him a few words. That’s all.” While this has nothing to do with the case, he hopes to appeal to their humanity in order to get them to give him a chance in these deliberations. Many of the jurors use logos, logic and reasoning, to lay out the evidence in a rational and concrete manner to convince him. An example is when 4th Juror lays out all of the evidence of the knife to convince 8th Juror with seven, linear, factual points.
This changes how the juror views the rest of the case. In the play Rose wrote, “I’ve lived in a slum all my life. I nurse that trash in Harlem Hospital six nights a week.” (Rose 18) This example shows the reader the personality of juror 5 and how important he is to the verdict such as when he votes not guilty. He also adds insight to the trial because of the information he can tell people. An example of this is when he said, “You don’t use this kind of knife that way.