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The Film, “Class Action” - Problem Based Learning Task

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  1. Introduction
  2. The film, ?Class Action? by Michael Apted
  3. Problem Based Learning Task
  4. Conclusion

The film, ?Class Action? by Michael Apted (1991) is a legal/law ?themed movie that is concerned with injuries that a defective automobile causes. The lawsuit takes a rather interesting dimension when it becomes apparent that the defence attorney and the plaintiff's attorney have a personal relationship; that of an estranged daughter and father. The plaintiff's attorneyJedediah Tucker Ward is the father of Maggie Ward, the defence, automobile manufacturer's attorney. The main theme of the Class Action, is more like that of the controversy the surrounded the ?Pinto Litigation?. The plaintiff's attorney, Jed Ward is a liberal lawyer whose career is based on protecting the civil rights of people, so that they are not taken for granted by the powerful and the rich. Jed pursues this principle regardless of whatever he gets monetarily,; however, he does not follow up on his clients once he has settled a case; a very bad habit on his part. Maggie Ward on the other hand, has also made herself a career in law; however, her principle is the direct opposite of her father's, she represents the high and mighty, and has a self-interest agenda(Apted, 1991). In the film, she works for a large corporate law firm. She and Jed have a rather tense relationship; she hates her father because, apparently her father cheated on her mother.

Jed, the plaintiff's attorney is supposed to make a case against the large automobile manufacturer, whose car had exploded after collision and killed a woman, the plaintiff's wife. Jed believes, based on his research, that he has covered all the bases and that the case against the large automobile manufacturer is water tight(Apted, 1991). The case however, becomes complicated when he realizes that her estranged daughter will be representing the large automobile manufacturer; he is going to face her in court.

[...] Corporate Criminal Liability (2nd ed.). London: Sweet and Maxwell. [...]


[...] Under the English law, it would be based under the principles of tort law, which considers civil wrongs as a breach of legal duty that influencesthe right of a character to the degree that is considered under the law as sufficient enough for such an individual to complain. The tort system aims at vindicating distributive, retributive and corrective justice principles; it protects the autonomy of individuals(Harpwood, 2009). In this class action suit, the principles of the tort of negligence are applicable, as offered by English common law. In order to prove the tort of negligence, then, it must be shown that there existed duty of care? situation; a situation where the law attaches liability to carelessness. [...]


[...] Particularly it raises discussion about corporate responsibility with regards to universal human rights. This theory has the objective of ensuring support for social, economic, and political justice by corporates for people and places where they do their business. Ethical responsibility requires that business and professionals do what is right even when the law does not require so(Beauchamp, 2009). Even though there is no definitive law obligating the automobile manufacturer, Argos, to redesign the Meridian Model to ensure that they are safe, the ethical responsibility theory demands and expects Argos to have done so. [...]

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