Citizen Verdict

Watch Citizen Verdict

  • R
  • 2003
  • 1 hr 37 min
  • 4.3  (492)

Citizen Verdict is a 2003 American thriller movie that follows the story of Marty Rockman (played by Jerry Springer), a television show host who runs a legal reality show called 'Citizen Verdict.' In the show, the audience acts as the judge and jury in a trial, and the verdict given by the majority of the audience is the final verdict. The show becomes very popular, and Rockman's ratings go through the roof.

One day, a group of terrorists hijacks a school bus and take a group of children hostage. The police manage to negotiate the release of all but one child, Jimmy Pettit (played by Sean Young). The kidnappers demand that Pettit's parents, who are both on trial for murdering a police officer, be acquitted of all charges in exchange for Jimmy's release. The case is assigned to Judge Armando Acosta (played by Armand Assante), who is known for being tough in the courtroom.

Marty Rockman sees the case as a massive opportunity for his show and decides to declare that his TV audience will be the jury for the case. Judge Acosta is initially hesitant but eventually agrees to let the trial take place on live television. Things quickly spiral out of control as Rockman's audience and the media start to influence the trial's outcome.

Meanwhile, the situation with Jimmy Pettit grows direr as the kidnappers become impatient and aggressive. Jimmy's mother, Kathy (played by Amy Yasbeck), insists on being present in the courtroom throughout the trial, giving Judge Acosta yet another obstacle to overcome.

The film's ensemble cast also includes Roy Scheider as Lawrence White, the prosecutor, and Carmen Chaplin as Jessica, a journalist covering the high-profile trial. The movie is directed by Philippe Martinez and written by Martinez, Tony Clarke, and Alexandra Julson.

Citizen Verdict explores the themes of media manipulation, public opinion, and the judicial system's power. As the trial unfolds before a massive TV audience, the consequences of turning justice into entertainment become increasingly apparent. The line between what is morally and legally right starts to blur, and more and more people are willing to compromise their values for the sake of entertainment.

Armand Assante's performance as Judge Acosta stands out in the movie, as he tries to uphold justice despite the chaos surrounding him. Jerry Springer, who is known for hosting his own controversial talk show, delivers a convincing portrayal of Marty Rockman, who is willing to do anything to boost his ratings.

The movie's pacing is engaging, and the tension builds up throughout the narrative, especially during the trial scenes. While the film's premise is somewhat far-fetched, it raises important questions about the role of media in today's society and how it influences public opinion and the justice system.

In conclusion, Citizen Verdict is a thrilling movie that presents a thought-provoking critique of the media and the legal system's power. It features a talented cast and an engaging story that keeps audiences on the edge of their seats until the end.

Citizen Verdict is a 2003 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 37 minutes. It has received mostly poor reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 4.3.

Where to Watch Citizen Verdict
Citizen Verdict is available to watch free on Plex and Tubi TV. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Amazon Prime and Amazon. Some platforms allow you to rent Citizen Verdict for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 37 min
  • IMDB Rating
    4.3  (492)