Genre Guesstimation – The Paper Chase (1973) – Encore Review

The idea behind this feature (Genre Guesstimation) is for me to watch a bunch of new movies (or ones that I haven’t seen many times) from the chosen monthly GG genre in order to expand my knowledge of movies within that particular genre.

This month’s genre has been chosen by Jason Stershic of Agent Palmer and we will be reviewing our favorite College Themed Movies..

Please get me your submissions by the 25th of Feb by sending them to

Tnx Jason!

Try to think out of the box!

Let’s see if I felt that this movie would be worthy of being in the company of my others favorite movies in the genre of College Themed Movies ………

“You teach yourselves the law, but I train your minds. You come in here with a skull full of mush; you leave thinking like a lawyer.” – Charles W. Kingfield Jr.

Number of Times Seen – 3 (26 Jul 2001, 27 Nov 2014 and 1 Feb 2022)

Link to original reviewHere

Brief Synopsis – A group of first year law students try to deal with the chaos of their academic choice in life.

My Take on it – This is a film that I saw a few years back and after Jason chose this as this months genre, I decided to refresh my memory of it.

The film does an exceptional job relaying to the viewer how crazy and chaotic it must be in law school.

They only show us one of the many classes that these new students must attend, but the multiple view of this course is quite profound, largely due to the Oscar winning performance by John Houseman as a very strict professor who tries to prepare these future lawyers for the world of law where everything doesn’t need to be memorized but rather integrated into each and every case that they will come across in life.

Timothy Bottoms is great as the lead here despite being outshined by Houseman (just as everyone else in the movie is).

The rest of the supporting cast is also great with Lindsay Wagner, Graham Beckel, Edward Hermann, James Naughton and David Clennon all adding to the diverse personalities of law students.

They do a wonderful job giving a taste of the large amount of case work law school requires which obviously takes over their entire lives and leaves them no time for other social or personal outlets.


MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – In his autobiography, John Houseman said of his Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination and win that “my first reaction was one of incredulity and vague pleasure, followed by a sense of embarrassment at the realization that for most actors of my age, an Academy Award or even a nomination comes as the hard-earned culmination of a long and dedicated career; mine was the reward for ten agreeable days spent with a friend in Toronto!” (From IMDB)

Genre Grandeur Worthy? – Comes close. The film is able to give the viewer the experience of what it must be like to be in law school while making one wonder why people want to do such a thing.

Rating – Globe Worthy (8/10) (no change from original review)


Check out my *updated* movie stats here

To see my reviews of Oscar Winning Performances check out this link

To see my reviews of all Oscar Best Picture Winners click here (now complete)

Here is a link to my movie index A-Z


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