The Verdict, 1982
visit the film locations
Boston: Flights: Logan Airport. Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority operates subway and bus routes to and from Logan.
New York: Flights: JFK Airport
The Verdict location: The hospital and the courtroom corridors: Massachusetts State House, Beacon Hill, Boston
Washed-up lawyer Frank Galvin (Paul Newman) finds unexpected redemption when he takes on a medical malpractice case in this David Mamet-scripted courtroom drama.
The Verdict location: Frank Galvin drinks at the ‘Boston’ bar: Vazac’s, Avenue B, East Village, New York
Galvin’s local bar, where he plays pinball and meets up with glam divorcee Laura Fischer (Charlotte Rampling) is PH Vazac’s, 108 Avenue B at Seventh Street (known as Seven and B), at the southeast corner of Tompkins Square Park in the East Village – familiar from films such as The Godfather Part II and Crocodile Dundee.
The Verdict location: Frank Galvin gets thrown out of the funeral home: East Broadway, South Boston
The funeral home, from which he’s ignominiously ejected when it’s discovered he’s a lawyer on the make, is the real Boston, though. More surprisingly, it’s not only a real funeral home, it’s still in business. William F Spencer Funeral Home, 575 East Broadway at H Street, South Boston, and only a little modernised since 1982.
Although the courthouse itself is a studio set, the staircases and the grand rotunda are those of New York’s Tweed Courthouse, City Hall Park facing Chambers Street. Officially the New York County Courthouse, its name comes from ‘Boss’ Tweed, the entrepreneur who notoriously embezzled vast sums of money from the city during the building’s construction.
The Verdict location: the Bishop’s palace: Otto Kahn Mansion, East 91st Street, New York
The office of the Bishop, where Galvin refuses an offer of $210,000 is is the Otto Kahn Mansion, 1 East 91st Street at Fifth Avenue on New York’s Upper East Side (which was the apartment block robbed in the same director’s 1971 The Anderson Tapes).
The Verdict location: Galvin meets Dr Gruber at the hospital entrance: Massachusetts State House, Mount Vernon Street, Boston
The hospital and the courtroom corridors are Massachusetts State House, Beacon Street, with its Gothic interior designed by Charles Bulfinch. The ‘hospital’ entrance, where Galvin talks to Dr Gruber, is at the junction of Mount Vernon Street and Hancock Street. There are free tours weekdays. Its golden dome is featured in Martin Scorsese’s The Departed.
But the deeper Galvin digs, the more things begin mysteriously to go wrong.
The Verdict location: Galvin discovers Dr Gruber has suddenly gone on holiday: Willow Street, Brooklyn Heights, New York
Dr Gruber’s ‘Boston’ townhouse, where Galvin discovers the doctor is out – having suddenly decided to go away on holiday – is 151 Willow Street in Brooklyn Heights. The house was the former home of playwright Arthur Miller, who wrote not only Death Of A Salesman and The Crucible, but also the screenplay The Misfits for his then-wife, Marilyn Monroe.
The Verdict location: Galvin visits the obstetric nurse: G Street, South Boston
Laura Fischer is supposedly staying at the ‘Sheraton Boston’, but the hotel bar in which Galvin has an unpleasant confrontation with her is in the – now closed – Sheraton Russell Hotel, 45 Park Avenue at East 37th Street, New York.