Director: Brad Furman
Stars: Matthew McConaughey, Ryan Phillippe, William H. Macy
Based on the sinewy yarn of the same name by crime novelist Michael Connelly, The Lincoln Lawyer is a crackling good thriller from director Brad Furman (The Take) and screenwriter John Romano (TV’s Hill Street Blues and L.A. Law). Matthew McConaughey is bottom-feeding attorney Mick Haller, who tools around L.A. in a chauffered Lincoln that bears the license plate NTGUILTY. With his shades up and his ethics down, Haller trades his considerable courtroom skills for fast cash. If they’ve got the green, he’s got the smoke machine, whether his clients are bikers or bankers.
When Haller hears Beverly Hills playboy Louis Roulet (Ryan Phillippe) is accused of beating and attempting to murder a woman he met in a bar, the lawyer senses a fast windfall. Roulet’s alibi is sound and his mama has a big checkbook. After Haller does some sleuthing, aided by his shaggy sidekick, Frank, (William H. Macy in a fine cameo), disturbing evidence and possible corruption of justice turn up, and Haller’s long-dormant conscience begins to kick in.
Pride and the law require Haller to give Roulet the best defence he can, even if he must hold his nose to do so.
It’s a solid return to dramatic form for the talented McConaughey, who holds the spotlight in a film with so much else going for it.