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The only really recognizable face in this movie is Tom Sellack, who plays detective Larry Starczek. One that kept haunting me is a fairly minor character named Collins Farwell is played by Shemar Moore. I knew I'd seen him somewhere before, and pretty sure he played a cop, but it was not until I looked this movie up on IMDB that I realized he was Detective Derek Morgan in the TV series, "Criminal Minds."
What we know at the outset of this film is that three people were murdered in a diner, a woman and two men. A rather flimsy trail of evidence leads Starczek to a fence named Squirrel Gandalf (Glenn Plummer), and when Starczek confronts him, he admits he doesn't know whether he did it or not. He was just that stoned. Starczek convinces him that he did, and he confesses.
Remember, this is just the beginning, not the end. He is sentenced to death, but when the appeals procedure gets down to the wire after seven years, the court appoints a successful corporate attorney named Arthur Raven (William H. Macy) to represent him. As Mr. Raven digs into the facts of the case, it becomes clear that there were a lot of problems with Squirrel's conviction.
There are a couple of love stories complicating the issue here, one that was supposedly over long ago, and one that took both of the participants by surprise. I will say no more, except that the love stories are so well woven into the criminal investigation and court case that they are indeed relevant to the story, and indeed relevant to the outcome of the appeal.
And I'm not going to tell you that, either.
The plot centers on a triple murder; the central question is who actually committed this crime. One guy is behind bars and sentenced to lethal injection for it. Another guy is in prison for another crime but is very closely connected to the crime. A third guy is out of the slammer but also closely connected to the crime. On the law side, we have Macy as a lawyer, his real-life wife Felicity Huffman as a judge with whom he gets romantically involved, Tom Selleck as a cop on the case, and Monica Potter as the prosecuting attorney who's married but also involved with Selleck.
Yes, it's pretty soapy, but Macy's great acting, as well as solid support from Huffman, Selleck, Potter, and the bad guys (James Rebhorn and Glenn Plummer, especially) make this more than watchable. If you can get past the first very slow hour or 75 minutes, then settle in for an enjoyable remainder of the movie.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
SOME OF MY FAVORITE ACTORS, ESPECIALLY SELLECK. WHAT A SUPERB AND UNDER-RATED MOVIE!Published 16 days ago by Anne Marie McNeil
An excellent movie -- great story line with a line of great actors.......Glad to add it to my collection.Published 12 months ago by Rachel D
Lots of Plot twists, Romance and Betrayal headline this edgy Justice drama. The acting is great and William H Macy is at his best, as are Selleck and Potter. Read morePublished 15 months ago by GenesKid