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Must Watch English Lawyer Movies in 2024

| April 22, 2024

Today, let us take more of a breath and detach ourselves from our daily strains. We will discuss some of the top lawyer movies you can answer to your weekend to stretch yourself from a cumbersome Monday to Friday. Today, I would like to discuss a little bit about a genre or kind of movie: lawyer movies that you must watch if you are a law enthusiast, law student, or simply anyone who likes this genre of movies.  

My Cousin Vinny (1992)

The brain behind this lawyer movie is Jonathan Lynn, and the key personnel is Dale Launer, who has both directed the movie and written the screenplay. The film about My Cousin Vinny depicts two naïve New York guys who were accused. They are extensively harassed to the extent of interrogating and trailing them for murder while driving to Georgia. What is more, the destiny of these guys is at the mercy of Vincent Gambini (Vinny), a lawyer with a law degree opened at the tail end of the bar exam and skipped going to a T14 school.  

Gambine is portrayed by Joe Pesci and ionized his work to protect his cousin as well as his friend. As with his friend, the pressure in this situation will be “psychologically intensive.” She learns to navigate skillfully, but at the same time, she commits errors in her decision-making. In the film, Mick Gambini, played by Antonio Banderas, gets enormous support from his wife, Mona Lisa, who Marisa Tomei marvelously portrays.  

Fun Fact: Maria Tomei received an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for this role.   

12 Angry Men (1957)

The Lawyer movie is a masterpiece of a courtroom film by the American cinematographer Sidney Lumet. The film will show how these twelve men, being members of the jury, discuss the issue and decide what will happen to a poor young man who is accused of having committed a murder. On the other hand, if convicted, he shall be punished with a death sentence.  

The film starts with all the members of the jury except the eighth one, voting him guilty of the murder. Henry Fonda portrays the eighth juror. He is the one who urges other jurors to discuss the defendant’s case and consider the death penalty.  

The whole discussion is full of back-and-forth votes, as different jurors are trying to overcome various obstacles that they disregarded initially.  

Fun Fact: The movie was shot in less than three weeks.   

Anatomy of a Murder (1959)

Anatomy of a Murder is one of the lawyer movies deemed the greatest courtroom drama ever. It is based on a novel by the same name. This movie follows Michigan lawyer Paul Biegler, played by James Stewart, who has his work cut out after agreeing to defend Lt. Manion, played by Ben Gazzarra. Manion, who has a murdered a local bar owner after knowing he has been accused of committing rape.   

Biegler, who has been encouraged to take the case by his mentor, Parnell McCarthy, portrayed by Arthur O’Connell, must go up against big-city prosecutor Claude Dancer in order to help his client.   

Fun Fact: The novel upon which the movie is based was written by John D. Voelker (under the pseudonym Robert Traver), a Michigan-based Supreme Court justice.   

The Lincoln Lawyer (2011)

Brought to the big screen by Brad Furman in the movie The Lincoln Lawyer, Matthew McConaughey plays the role of Mick Haller, an attorney who runs his law firm from the driver’s seat of his old Lincoln. Mick has taken a different project to defend Louis Ross Roulet’s life, but this poor criminal is a wealthy playboy from Beverly Hills.  

However, at the beginning of the investigation, Mick is denied any such breakthroughs as he treats this case as expected to end without much racket. However, he will soon learn more than he can imagine in his first encounter with the mysterious place and understand its connection to an unsolved issue.  

Fun Fact: After starring in the movie, McConaughey became a spokesman for the Lincoln brand in 2014.   

Witness for the Prosecution (1957)

This movie depicts Leonard Vole fictionalized by Tyrone Power who is charged with the murder of a rich woman. Vole is Characterized by the iconic Sir Wilfrid Robarts (played by Charles Laughton) and he needed his alibi to be verified by his wife, Christine (played by Marlene Dietrich).  

The scene takes a surprising turn, as Christine chooses to show up to court to testify against him. A number of other twists and turns come up in the moving forward as Sir Wilfrid applies himself to the defense of his client as well as the settlement of the case.  

Fun Fact: Among the movies Powell completed before his death from a heart attack in November 1958 was Witness for the Prosecution, which was the last one.  

Legally Blonde (2001)

The movie ‘Legally Blonde,’ based on a novel by Amanda Brown, is a courtroom comedy with its protagonist as Elle Woods, the sorority girl from California. She runs Warner Huntington III (Matthew Davis) to Harvard Law School and follows him after he breaks up with her. He leaves her on the night when she expects her final proposal.  

From the start, Elle’s endeavors aim merely to get Warner back. Still, gradually, she starts loving law as a profession, which helps her overcome obstacles for a newcomer to a law school, from participating in cold calls to outlining case briefs. She observes as she goes ahead that she can rise and become a great lawyer on her own.  

Fun Fact: The contract signed by Reese Witherspoon allowed her to keep every costume worn in the film after the shoot ended.   

Philadelphia (1993)

The director of the movie was Jonathan Demme. His story is about the life of lawyer Andrew Beckett. He used to hide his homosexuality and his HIV in order not to create problems for his career at a very prestigious and important Philadelphia Big law firm. After a while, his secrets are leaked by a peer.  

Beckett weighs in, and by losing his position at the law firm, he considers going to court for discrimination. The only lawyer who could come through for him was Joe Miller, played by Denzel Washington. These two men work in tandem to stand up to one of the law firm’s attorneys, Belinda Conine, who Mary Steenburgen plays.  

Fun Fact: Demme first cast a comic actor in the role of Joe Miller but then he better realized that the role of Joe Miller should be played by Washington after he expressed his intention to get the role.  

Erin Brockovich (2000)

Erin Brockovich narrates the true story of a woman who fought against the giant energy corporation Pacific Gas and Electric after knowing that they were trying to cover up that was exposing a local community to contaminated water, leading to serious diseases.   

In the movie, Steven Soderbergh is the director and character of Brockovich in this movie played by Julia Roberts. Her lawyer, Ed Masry, who later hires her after he formed his practice, is played by the brilliant actor Albert Finney. The moment when she started working at Masry’s firm, Brockovich understood there was something wrong with the documents, and she set off on her research.  

Fun Fact: The makers of the company made the high payment of twenty million dollars, Robert’s role as Erin Brockovich. Becoming the first female actress to receive such a huge sum from Hollywood.  

Judgment at Nuremberg (1961)

In the late 1940s, when the world had just won World War II, the story is about Prozis being tried in an American court in Germany. In the movie, under the direction of Stanley Kramer, these persons are doomed to face a court-martial and answer the accusations of crimes against humankind.  

Chief Justice Haywood, personified by Spencer Tracy, will have to listen to Ernst Janning, the lead defendant defended by Maximillian Schell – this is followed by the testimony of a widow of a Nazi general, a US army captain, and a witness called Irene Wallner (who is portrayed by Judy Garland)  

Fun Fact: Maximilian Schell became the lowest-billed actor to be an Oscar winner for his Best Actor performance (he was fifth in the cast list).  

A Few Good Men (1992)

This movie, which was directed by Rob Reiner, with the novel from Aaron Sorkin, the movie tells the story of Lt. Daniel Kaffee (played by Tom Cruise), who is a military lawyer who must defend two Marines who have been charged with killing another Marine at Guantanamo Bay.  

Moore’s character, as a lawyer, persuades Kaffee not to apply for a deal through which these Marines will turn a blind eye to their actual acts in the hope that they get lesser sentences. Not to be betrayed by their common lie, Puller crafts a story that satisfies Horn about Col. Nathan J Seasser. He is portrayed by Jack Nicholson.  

Fun Fact: As voted by the American Film Association as one of the greatest movie quotes ever made (it came in twenty-ninth in the process, presumably), the famous line “You can’t handle the truth” cannot be ignored as an iconic movie quote.  

Final Thoughts

Now you are aware of the best lawyer movies that you can watch over the weekends. So, grab yourself a bowl of hot popcorn and an ice-cold beer and spend your earned weekend lying on the couch to watch some of the best lawyer movies Hollywood has to offer.

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nilanjana basu
nilanjana basu

Nilanjana is a lawyer with a flair for writing. She has a certification in American Laws from Penn Law (Pennsylvania University). Along with this, she has been known to write legal articles that allow the audience to know about American laws and regulations at ease.

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