Thursday, May 20, 2010

593 - The Firm review

I hate to be one of those people who read the book first and then complained that the movie wasn't enough like its source material, but I'm going to have to go ahead and do that here. The crime in Sydney Pollock's adaptation of one of John Grisham's earliest and best legal thrillers bends over backwards to make its protagonist sympathetic to the audience, making a Harvard Law grad Boy Scout out of Tom Cruise, who has so much integrity that even the stuff he does wrong isn't really his fault. Grisham, with the notable advantage of having hundreds of pages to tell a story, allowed hero Mitch McDeere to err on the gray side of morality, concealing an affair from his wife and swindling both the FBI and the mob out of millions. Here, he just wants his life back. Good enough for a major motion picture, but quite lame if you're conscious of a much more interesting tale. Pic also desperately tries to give Gene Hackman something to do, and more or less fails.

2.5 out of 5

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