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List price: £19.99|
Our price: £19.99
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Average customer rating:
4.2 out of 5
ISBN/ASIN : B00005950M
Manufacturer : Columbia Tri-Star Home Video|
Release data : 18 February, 2002
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A selection of product reviews
Gripping and entertaining
The story of the investigation into the death of a US Marine is brilliantly portrayed in this film. Undoubtedly one of Jack Nicholson's finest roles (as the much-feared Colonel Jessep) and justly supported by that of Tom Cruise who is brilliant as the young, Harvard-taught lawyer, Lt. Danny Kaffe, who simply wants to settle the case without entering a courtroom, but the determination of Lt-Commander Joanne Galloway (Demi Moore) ensures that Danny's job is not going to be a pushover! The court scenes are compelling viewing and the outcome is in doubt right up to the final scene. Anyone with a vague idea about military life will enjoy this film. There isn't a bad actor/actress in it!
Top courtroom drama
This adaptation by Aaron Sorkin (he made up The West Wing) of his own stage play is a superb piece of trial by movies. When a young, somewhat out of place marine private is killed, apparently murdered by two of his comrades, the JAG corps send Lt-Cmdr Galloway (an, as always, somewhat wooden, Demi Moore), Lt. Caffey (Tom Cruise, earning his 1st Oscar nomination in the process) and Lt. Weinberg (the always watchable Kevin Pollak) to investigate. Along the way they discover conspiracy, cover up, and a sociopathic general (yes, that's Jack).
Nicholson's hardly in it, but he lights up the screen when he's there, he's so good it's scary. Cruise is more than watchable in his role of the showy lawyer maturing faster than he wants, and it's a credit to him that in the final showdown, he keeps pace with Nicholson, never being outdone or pushed off screen. The film also boasts fine turns from Kevin bacon, Kiefer Sutherland and the late JT Walsh, but they could have found a better actress than Moore. Also the character can be somewhat irritating.
Sorkin's script is fantastic, sharp, witty, and explosive at the very end. Right, let's talk about that scene. This is a truly great showdown, right down to the angry, sneering speech from Col Jessop (it comes right after 'You can't handle the truth!'). This is just a very watchable, entertaining and involving thriller. It follows the standard lines of a courtroom thriller, through the 'it's a hopeless case' starting through to the dramatic turnaround, but it at least has a small sting in the tail. Watch it now. Are we clear?
Poweful build up to an explosive final scene!
Cut out the final few scenes and this film would have been classed as a mediocre production. However, Cruise v Nicholson in the courtroom make cinema history. Its quotable, emotional and no matter how many times you watch it it is still edge of the seat stuff. Rarely has a film been so sucessful at fully engaging the viewer in the plot of the film. Converting others to the cause will be difficult as they may be reluctant to sit through one and a half hours of Cruise's character comfortably developing as a person. But the story does have the kind of links that you feel clever for figuring out yourself. The DVD itself is disappointing. The conversion isn't sharp enough and there is a lack of any extras at all. Extras don't infulence my decision to buy a DVD, but in this case it would have been fantastic to see how the original trailers were put together. Nevertheless, we have no choice in the matter; everyone should own this film. The market leader in the genre of military courtroom drama.