directed by Brad Furman
It’s an airport novel turned disposable entertainment, plain and simple. I do not begrudge films like this because, after all, that’s what film was first and foremost designed to do, entertain. I have said it before: the world of film needs people like Merion C. Cooper just as much as it needs people like Orson Welles. But let’s get one thing straight: I am not asserting that Brad Furman is another Merion C. Cooper. I suppose Steven Speilberg or (shudder) James Cameron would be the Coopers of our generation, but I digress… The Lincoln Lawyer, based on the book by Michael Connelly (give it a read the next time you’re waiting for a flight), tells the story of defense lawyer Mick Haller, slick shit defender of moneyed scumbags and high profile lowlifes around Los Angeles. When Haller takes a job defending a rich realtor (Ryan Phillippe), he finds that the quest for the truth can be a dangerous one, indeed. All the actors sink their teeth into roles that call for not much more than a rudimentary grasp of the acting craft, which makes the film way more enjoyable than the dross it could have potentially been. Matthew McConaughey is back, baby (alright, alright) as Haller, strutting his shit like Mitchum in his prime. Please, Mr. McC, please say no to Failure to Launch 2: Still on the Launch Pad if it ever comes your way. William H Macy rocked, and Marisa Tomei was fantastic, John Leguizamo ruled (but he always rules) and Phillipe was excellent. And I cannot tell you how excited I was to see Michael Paré back in action, in an actual credible movie. Be still my heart. I actually let out a small shriek in the auditorium. All in all, The Lincoln Lawyer was exactly what I expected, good old fashioned escapist film fun at its finest, expertly packaged and tightly directed. I would totally watch another Mick Haller installment after this (I’ve been told there are more books featuring the character), as long as Wooderson on the job, that is.
PS Those of you who are saying “Who the hell is Michael Paré?” right now need to watch Eddie and the Cruisers, Streets of Fire, Bad Moon and The Virgin Suicides immediately.