Director: Brad Furman
Following the adaptation of any number of John Grisham’s best-selling lawyer novels to the big screen throughout the nineties, “The Lincoln Lawyer” signals the latest court room drama to be adapted to the big screen in an already crowded market. This said however, a strong cast supported by a solid storyline does enough to keep the audience captivated throughout its entirety.
Based on the 2005 novel of the same name by American bestselling author Michael Connolly, the story gets its title from the Lincoln town car that main actor, criminal defense attorney Mickey Haller (Matthew McConaughey) operates out of. Picking up cases by hanging around at court houses, Haller accidentally lands a case that will endanger not only his own life but those of his family and associates. When noted Beverly Hills playboy Louis Roulet (Ryan Phillippe) is accused of the attempted murder of a prostitute he mysteriously hires Haller to represents him when he already has a number of leading lawyers at his disposal through his mother’s business. On the surface of it, Roulet has enough evidence in his favor to suggest that he has not committed the crime but some crucial slip ups on his part reveal he may have a more sinister past than what he is willing to reveal. What unfolds is a classic courtroom thriller in which Haller must use all his skills to make sure the correct person ends up behind bars.
While offering nothing new in the courtroom thriller genre, McConaughey and Phillippe are both at their cinematic best, with Phillippe playing a role he has played so well in films before, such as ’90s hit “Cruel Intentions.” Another more than convincing performance comes from William H. Macy as Haller’s investigator Frank. The film also gets credit for remaining true to its novel form with Connelly reportedly impressed by the film’s similarity to his book. This is not a film that necessarily needs to be seen on a big screen to be enjoyed and could be worth waiting for on DVD.