Reflection on 12 Angry Men When the scene is introduced, the twelve men are discussing how to sentence someone who may have committed murder in the first degree. However, we quickly realize that all of the men have different things going through their mind and even more complicated ways of expressing them. Jack Warden is a baseball enthusiast who has no regard for other people’s opinions or Henry Fonda asking the jurors to discuss what occurred. He lacks emotional self-perception which can be seen when he discusses baseball with the jurors while having no regard for their knowledge on the sport.
Jack also lacks congruency when he changes his vote of ‘guilty’ to ‘not guilty’ just because the majority vote was ‘not guilty’. He also lacks empathy when he insults Voskovec’s immigration history just because Voskovec asked if he knew was “reasonable doubt” was. George Voskovec is a foreign watch maker. In the beginning his vote is ‘guilty’ but other than this he does not have much to say at first.
He shows healthy self-esteem as he is aware of his limitations as a non-native English speaker but still corrects those around him for being wrong.
Voskovec demonstrates flexibility when he starts to question the occurrences leaving room for the possibility that his decision of ‘not guilty’ may be wrong. He also shows emotional self-control when he confronts Ed Begley’s lack of manners. Ed Begley is a garage owner who happens to have a cold during the movie. He demonstrates little respect when he mocks Henry Fonda for disagreeing with the others in the vote for ‘guilty’ and tries to change the subject at the slightest opportunity.
Begley also lacks emotional self-control when he expresses his point of view by yelling and shows no regard for the emotions of others when he insults the slums. Henry Fonda is an architect who from the beginning of the movie leads the situation by having doubts as to the proper verdict for the case and questioning the others. He is initiative when he asks the men to discuss the case in further detail. Fonda shows that through teamwork they can all agree on what is right and he slowly persuades the jurors to vote ‘not guilty’ with his influence. Of all the jurors, he is more aware not only of his self but the situation and those around him.
Joseph Sweeney is the oldest man present during the movie. He is the most attentive to details of all the jurors. Sweeney is very empathic when he tells his account of the old man who was a witness, by focusing on the witness’s body language he can tell that the man was lying. He also shows flexibility in voting ‘not guilty’ just so Fonda can continue expressing his doubts. Robert Webber is in the advertising business and has glasses. He does not show authenticity when he changes his mind from ‘guilty’ to ‘not guilty’ and back again just because he feels pressure from Cobb.
Webber also does not show to have the common purpose in mind or be aware of the gravity of the situation when he proposes resolving it like they do in his job by joking around. Lee Cobb is the owner of a messenger service. He lacks many of the characteristics Shankman and Allen bring up in the readings. Cobb shows no emotional self-perception or self-control. This can be seen in the many accounts where he disrespects someone by insulting them or just by yelling in general. He quickly loses the respect of the jurors because of his method of communicating.
Jack Klugman is from the slums and does not really say much during the movie. He lacks initiative in participating in the group discussion. Klugman does not want to develop any sort of relationship with the jurors. John Fiedler is a bank teller who tends to just go with his feelings and never really has a valid explanation for his actions. Despite not agreeing with Fonda in the beginning, Fiedler shows flexibility and optimism in doing what is right. He is also somewhat empathic when he tries to put himself in the defendant’s position so that he can better understand what happened, in hopes of finding out the truth.
Martin Balsam is a foreman and is the juror in charge of leading the discussion. He lacks initiative to make the jurors collaborate as he tells them they can do whatever they want in regards to reaching a verdict. Towards the end of the movie, he attempts to develop a relationship and be transparent by opening up to Fonda and telling him a story. Edward Binns is a house painter. Throughout the whole movie, he shows respect for the other jurors by listening to their point of view and also by defending certain ones who got verbally attacked at one point or another.
He also questions Fonda’s intentions but keeps himself open to the matters being discussed showing his flexibility and willingness to collaborate. E. G. Marhsall is a stock broker who also wears glasses. He lacks honest self-understanding when he assumes that he can remember anything recent and thinks the defendant is lying about being at the movies. Marshall also lacks authenticity as he tries to set himself apart from others by claiming he does not sweat. Fonda influences this point of view, however, when he makes Marshall be empathic with the female witness who also wore glasses.