The Lincoln Lawyer (2011) - M6.2/E8
I haven’t read any Michael Connelly books, but I’m guessing they fit right in there with Grisham’s best legal thrillers (of which I’ve only seen the movies). This was a well done movie and even more enjoyable as I’m just being introduced to the TV series the Firm (even sharing Josh Lucas with this movie).
I’ve always wondered about defence attorneys. How can someone defend a person who has committed awful crimes? This show made me remember (along with the Firm) that we believe in innocence before proven guilty. That proof is offered in court and often decided by a jury. Even the alleged criminal deserves justice, and shouldn’t be labelled a criminal until decided in a court of law. (It could be argued that not all criminals are caught, and thus not “alleged,” but that’s not the point of this short insight.)
We tend to sympathize with the victims of crimes, which can easily cause us to demonize those who defend their aggressors. But I like the thought that everyone deserves a fair trial. Our justice system was created with the thought of “innocent before proven guilty.” Which is why, for example, it’s unlawful to target American citizens for assassination without a fair trial. Our laws and justice system aren’t meant to prevent bad things from happening, it is a reactive system. If we want dangerous people off the street, we need to figure out lawful ways to bring them to justice and prevent them from pursuing more evil.
Back to the movie, Mick Haller isn’t the noble lawyer that Mitch McDeere is in The Firm, but his nobility does shine through his sleaziness as he gets entwined in his new client’s case. When what he values most is in danger (his and his family’s lives) he straightens up and is able to put evil in its place. His gratitude shines through as he offers to work pro bono for one of his shadier frequented clients who’s team of motorcycle buddies do Mick a huge favor. The resolution may not come as much of a surprise, but it’s the journey, not the end results that make the movie a fun, worthwhile experience.
Mick and his wife appear to be separated, though not totally distant. However, all that they end up going through and Mick realizing how much he loves his family, makes it possible to believe that they'll try harder to make things work. This isn't really a main point of the movie, but another good thought that adds to its value.
Do be aware that there is some strong language and a few scenes of violence, but the overall content is extremely mild considering the rating this show received.