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Movie Review: The Devil's Advocate
I hail from a strong Christian family where both my parents are fundamentalist Christians… and they carry very strong views on what is right or wrong in this world. I believe in the Bible but I'm not the kinds to shun good entertainment. [Chuckle]
For one, I'm an Al Pacino fan through and through. Ever since I saw this movie, The Devil's Advocate, in the year '98 in a movie theater I was sold. Yes... and this was a time when all the girls thought Keanu was really cute (when isn't he?) and could do no wrong. But that's not the point of this movie at all!
The movie begins with a courtroom scene in a small town called Gainesville, Florida where Kevin Lomax (Keanu Reeves) is defending a client who is charged with child molestation. In wanting to preserve his unbeaten record, he proceeds to win the case in a manner that will make your stomach turn if you were the girl who was cross-examined on the witness stand.
Due to this winning streak of his, he is invited to select a jury for the firm Milton, Chadwick and Waters by a representative of the firm who finds him at the local bar celebrating after his 'win'.
Tempted by the lucrative offer for such a small task, Kevin goes to New York with his wife (Charlize Theron) and picks a jury that wins the case for the firm. But this is just the beginning as he is then invited to work with the firm by John Milton (Al Pacino) in New York, much to his wife's delight and disbelief.
The rest of the movie deals with the cases that Kevin fights... with each case defending a crime worse than the previous one.
To add to it all, Mary Ann (his wife) begins to lose her mind and see 'things'...
As you would've guessed by now, that this movie is a supernatural thriller... so the action begins to heat up in ways you wouldn't foresee...
Are the travails of Mary Ann merely a figment of her imagination? Is Kevin Lomax's winning streak an exception to the rule 'nobody wins 'em all'? Is this big city life with all its thrills and frills worth losing everything precious to him?
And the answers to these question lie in the answer to the question: What's the secret to Kevin Lomax's winning streak?
So, prepare yourself for a very engaging movie as you proceed to unravel these questions...
Moments to remember:
- Al Pacino's monologue just before Eddie Barzoon is killed (the best I've seen in a while)
- Connie Nielson's finely shaped body
- The décor at the Milton, Chadwick & Waters is mind-blowing
- Vanity is my favorite sin.
- I'm the last humanist.
Personally, I’m not one for the dark side, but this movie is so appealing because it suggests so much but leaves you to decide for yourself. That’s the best part. All you see is the balance of the scales shifting from one side to another, with the ‘for’ and ‘against’ arguments made pertaining to God, Christianity and the faith that is required to live the ‘Christian’ life.
As a movie, I feel that it doesn’t belong in any particular genre which is what makes it quite an oddity… that’s why it stands out for me!
It is truly a reminder that at the end of the day, we are susceptible to temptation… saints yet sinners and vice versa… and there’s nothing wrong with it… we’re HUMAN, you see! And we can always redeem ourselves, just maybe…
This is a movie that I will continue to watch long after it was released... and I will go back to it again and again to watch Al Pacino doing his thing with ease! The man is a delight to watch, I tell you!
Five stars (on 5) in my book. A must-watch for any Al Pacino fan...