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Tyler

The Judge

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Hollywood Reporter:

Warner Bros. is hoping that Jack Nicholson steps into the courtroom for The Judge, a drama that will star and is being developed by Robert Downey Jr.

Warners is actively courting the notoriously picky Nicholson with an unofficial offer to play Downey’s father. The script, originally penned by Nick Schenk with a rewrite by Bill Dubuque, is also now in his hands.

Downey is on board to star as a successful attorney who returns to his hometown for his mother's funeral only to discover that his Alzheimer's-stricken father is the murder suspect. The man must represent his father in court, in the process becoming a better person.

The story mentions David Dobkin (The Change Up, Wedding Crashers, Shanghai Knights) is attached to direct, which seems like a strange choice for an Oscar-bait movie.


It's the side effects that save us.
--The National, "Graceless"
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My ambivalent review

 

Watching The Judge is a bit like watching two world-class athletes square off in a meaningless exhibition game. There’s the occasional flash of brilliance, and the fun of watching it. Ultimately, though, you know they could each sink five half-court shots in a row and none would have quite the same impact as a simple lay up in a game that actually counted.

 

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So did you think it was worth watching or not?


Art affirms all that is best in man—hope, faith, love, beauty, prayer…what he dreams of and what he hopes for.  What is art?  Like a declaration of love: the consciousness of our dependence on each other.  A confession.  An unconscious act that nonetheless reflects the true meaning of life—love and sacrifice.

~Andrei Tarkovsky

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It's a fairly formulaic film -- big-town hot-shot lawyer returns to the small town where he grew up, rediscovers his roots, etc. -- but the performances are great. Anyone who's had "issues" with their dad -- or their son, I guess -- might relate to it.


"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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It's a fairly formulaic film -- big-town hot-shot lawyer returns to the small town where he grew up, rediscovers his roots, etc. -- but the performances are great. Anyone who's had "issues" with their dad -- or their son, I guess -- might relate to it.

Or their daughter.

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I know Janusz Kaminski is a wonderful cinematographer.  What what was he doing with the backlighting. When Downey gets to the funeral home it was like a beam of light coming from the window behind him right into viewers' eyes.  (I have enough eye problems already, thanks.) Then there is a scene in which in close up profile he's half backlit so that part of him is in focus and part blurry from the lighting.  More than a bit distracting.


A foreign movie can't be stupid.

-from the film
Armin

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