- Cast:Brad Furman, Matthew McConaughey, Ryan Phillippe, Marisa Tomei
- Release Date:March 31, 2011
- Running time:119 minutes
- Film Worth:$16.00
- FILMINK rates movies out of $20 - the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth
While it sticks to the courtroom thriller formula, this is an entertaining ride thanks to a terrific screenplay and Matthew McConaughey’s magnetic lead performance.
Matthew McConaughey is an actor whose talent has been unrepresented by his choice of movies. Too many romantic comedies and not enough solid material like his latest, The Lincoln Lawyer, which reunites the Texan with the courtroom thriller, a once prominent sub-genre that includes McConaughey's mainstream breakthrough film A Time to Kill.
Based on the book written by popular crime novelist Michael Connelly, the meaning of The Lincoln Lawyer is explained in the film's opening credits, with McConaughey rolling in his Lincoln Town Car /office in downtown Los Angeles.
McConaughey stars as Mick Haller, a slick and opportunistic defence attorney who lands the jackpot when asked to represent Louis Roulet (Ryan Phillippe), a rich kid realtor charged with assault and attempted murder of a prostitute.
Yet, as is always the case with these films, not all is black and white, and soon Mick finds himself struggling with personal guilt and the shady nature of his profession, as all sides begin to blur into a murky mess which he needs to navigate in order to survive.
What follows are the usual twists and turns, but under the direction of Brad Furman a fun and thrilling watch ensues, backed by a great screenplay by John Romano (Intolerable Cruelty) and a bevy of interesting characters, where everyone from the jailhouse snitch (Shea Whigham) and perhaps the sleaziest witness to ever take the stand (Eric Etebari) all have something to contribute.
An excellent ensemble cast all deliver memorable performances, with special mention to William H. Macy as a quick witted investigator and Michael Pena as a hard done by prisoner. Yet it is McConaughey who is the face and heart of The Lincoln Lawyer, using that easy charm and magnetic screen presence to full effect.
Hopefully his solid performance will mark a change in his career trajectory.