LINCOLN LAWYER, THE
(director: John Romano/based on the novel by ; cinematographer: Lukas Ettlin; editor: Jeff McEvoy; music: Cliff Martinez; cast: (Mick Haller), (Louis Roulet), (Maggie McPherson), (Frank Levin), (Ted Minton), (Mary Windsor), (Val Valenzuela), Michael Peña (Jesus Martinez), Bryan Cranston (Detective Lankford), Michael Paré (Detective Kurlen), Bob Gunton (Cecil Dobbs), Laurence Mason (Earl), Margarita Levieva(Reggie Campo), Shea Whigham (Corliss), Eric Etebari (Charles Talbot); Runtime: 119; MPAA Rating: R; producers: Tom Rosenberg/Gary Lucchesi/Sidney Kimmel/Scott Steindorff; Lionsgate; 2011)
“This is a grand vehicle for .“
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
A solid but less than great lawyer movie directed by on the bestseller novel by crime reporter and crime writer John Romano. It follows sleazy but charmingly glib LA lawyer Mick Haller (Matthew ) around as he deals with several cases and interacts with his sweet lawyer prosecutor ex-wife Maggie (). She cares for their eight-year-old daughter and works for DA Ted Minton (Josh Lucas), the one going up against the ex in a high profile case. Smoothy Mick is hired to defend a rich man accused of assault. Mick uses the back seat of his chauffeur driven Lincoln Town Car as his office, which gives the film its novel approach to running a law practice. The loyal chauffeur Earl (Laurence Mason) is down for what passes as a few intimate conversations with the boss, who the filmmaker pumps up as a regular guy who cares despite his actions showing he doesn’t give a shit about his clients. The courtroom plot kicks in with a lot of chatter and a few nifty but preposterous twists, with everything so rigged and contrived that the air is let out of any suspense. But, despite its plot holes and superficial look at the American judicial system, this is a grand vehicle for
Louis Roulet (), working for his controlling mom’s () firm, is accused of severely beating up the prostitute Reggie Campo (Margarita Levieva) in her apartment, and he requests that Mick be his lawyer.
The assault case grows increasingly more complex, as the shady lawyer works all the angles to not only solve this case but several others that this case touches on. The Lincoln Continental lawyer doesn’t travel on the same highway as better lawyer redemption pics such as Paul Newman’s The Verdict (1982), but neither does it make you car sick. Since it’s surprisingly entertaining, I found it easy to accept it for what it is–a routine thriller that’s easy to digest if you’re looking only for a nosh between meals.
REVIEWED ON 3/20/2011 GRADE: C+