The Life of David Gale Film Review

Topics: Death Penalty, Death row, The Life of David Gale Pages: 3 (1033 words) Published: July 29, 2007
The Life of David Gale Film Review

In The Life of David Gale, an opponent of the death penalty, David Gale, played by Kevin Spacey, is on death row, with only a few days before his execution. He has summoned Elizabeth "Bitsey" Bloom, played by Kate Winslet, a journalist who served seven days in prison because she refused to disclose her sources for a news story, to hear what he has to say. As the story unfolds, Bitsey changes from skepticism to intense involvement with an apparently innocent victim of the death penalty. Gale was a professor of philosophy at the University of Texas, and we saw him lecturing about Jacques Lacan's conundrum of the inability of a desired fantasy to be satisfying once achieved. When he finishes his lecture, and all students but one has left the classroom, Berlin, played by Rhona Mitra, offers to do "anything" to get a good grade, but Gale turns her down in a humorous way. When he leaves the classroom, he is joined by his ally and friend Constance Hallway, played by Laura Linnet, who updates him on developments surrounding the latest Texas death row inmate, a seventeen-year-old African American girl only a few days away from her execution. At a campus party, where Gale gets drunk, Berlin corners him and directs him in a sex act that leaves possible evidence of rape. Soon, he is arrested for rape; his wife walks out on him taking his son, though he is exonerated, presumably because the he-said she-said trial leaves reasonable doubt about his guilt. Nevertheless, the university fires him, the national headquarters of Deathwatch bans him from the Austin office, and he drinks heavily. Yet he continues to socialize with Constance. One day, Constance is found dead, Gale is arrested, and he is convicted and sentenced to death. On returning to her motel one night, Bitsey finds a mysterious videotape; when she plays the tape, she concludes that Constance committed suicide and was not murdered, but she obtains evidence...
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