True Believer (1989)

“Well, let’s not drag the constitution into this.” – Robert Reynard

Number of Times Seen – 1 (1 Nov 2018)

Brief Synopsis – A lawyer is energized when he takes on an 8 year old murder case.

My Take on it – This is a courtroom drama/thriller that probably was considered much better when it came out than it does now especially since there have been so many court room procedural shows on TV in the 30 years since this came out that have done this kind of story so much better.

James Woods, who is usually a pretty powerful and compelling actor feels very miscast in the title role and doesn’t manage to do enough here to keep this story intriguing.

His ponytail makes his character feel even more ridiculous and it’s hard to take him seriously throughout.

Robert Downey Jr. who grew into a much better actor over the years is underused here and lays a character who also doesn’t manage to help move things along.

The story itself follows a simple pattern and is quite predictable along the way and doesn’t manage to keep anything surprising or even thrilling throughout which is quite disappointing.

The story feels drawn out a bit too much and probably could have been much better as a 42 minute episode of one of the aforementioned procedural TV shows instead of presenting it as a full length movie.

Overall this film is quite lackluster and doesn’t manage to give us an interesting or thrilling story.

Bottom Line – Lackluster film that isn’t very interesting especially since these kind of stories have been overdone on procedural TV shows in the 3 decades since this came out. Even Woods, who is usually quite a powerful actor doesn’t feel right for this part and the ponytail makes him look quite ridiculous the whole time. Downey Jr. is underused here and just doesn’t help much either.  The story feels very drawn out and would probably have worked much better as a TV episode than as a full length feature.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – The character Shu Kai Kim is based on Korean-American Chol Soo Lee, who was imprisoned for nearly ten years after a wrongful conviction for a murder he did not commit. (From IMDB)

Rating – BAFTA Worthy (5/10)


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One thought on “True Believer (1989)

  1. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1989 |

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