81 minutes. Color/B & W
An 80-minute-long documentary that tells the story of Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti, two Italian immigrant anarchists who were accused of a murder in 1920, and executed in Boston in 1927 after a notoriously prejudiced trial.
PETER MILLER &
AMY CAREY LINTON
AMY CAREY LINTON
JOHN T. LABARBERA
Voice of Nicola Sacco
Voice of Bartolomeo Vanzetti
DAVID KAISER ,
FRASER M. OTTANELLI,
MARY ANNE TRASCIATTI,
"The film Sacco and Vanzetti skillfully uses archival footage, artwork, music, poetry and film clips to trace the legal and political aspects of the case, and the emotions it aroused.
Actors John Turturro and Tony Shalhout read excerpts from the moving letters the two men wrote during their seven-year imprisonment, including one of Vanzetti’s last letters to his son.
"If it had not been for this thing, I might have lived out my life talking at street corners to scorning men," he wrote. "I might have died unmarked, unknown, a failure.
"Now we are not a failure. This is our career and our triumph. Never in our full life could we hope to do such work for tolerance, for justice, for man’s understanding of man, as now we do by accident."
Filmmaker Paul Miller, who spent four years and a great deal of borrowed money to create the documentary, points to his own Jewish background as a catalyst in his effort.
"My own grandfather came to Boston as an immigrant, and like many Jewish and Italian newcomers, was brutalized by the cops," Miller said during a phone interview. "My father was born in the Boston Jewish ghetto, and my mother couldn’t go to college because of the quota system."
"To many people, the Sacco-Vanzetti trial was a life-changing experience, which opened their eyes to many uncomfortable truths about the United States," said Miller, 45, who now lives in New York."
Jerusalem Post, March 27, 2007