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Runaway Jury April 11, 2007

Posted by Shujath in English, Movies, Reviews.

Being a “Legal Consultant” might sound to be one of the most boring jobs in the world but once you watch this one you’ll surely change your mind. This is one of the most entertaining legal thrillers in recent years though probably the most preposterous one too.

 A shootout in an office leads to the victim’s wife dragging the gun company (the brand with which the crime was committed) to court for damages. Gene Hackman and team are defending the gun company while Dustin Hoffman and team are on the other end. If you think what follows is a regular courtroom drama then you’re mistaken. The main concern here seems to be picking the jury which could be more sympathetic to their respective cases. In order to do this Hackman and team employ some high tech surveillance to figure out each of the tentative jury member’s sensibilities, their weaknesses and their past. Meanwhile, one of these jury members John Cusack (in tandem with his girlfriend Rachel Weisz) come up with an offer to sell the jury (by influencing their verdict) to both sides. The one upmanship games which follow thereon make up the rest of the movie.

It is easy to predict how the movie is going to end but nevertheless the episodes leading to it are fun. Of course the most unbelievable part is the way the jury is spied upon and evaluated…it really made me laugh at times. There aren’t any great performances expected here but still the ensemble cast doesn’t disappoint.

Director Gary Fleder does a fine job of adapting John Grisham’s novel into a highly entertaining film. According to me this one is far better than any other movie adaptation based on his novels (The Firm, The Client, A Time to Kill, The Pelican Brief). It’s been a while since I checked out a thriller and this one satisfied me completely.


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