The Devil's Advocate

19  DEC
The newest attorney at the world's most powerful law firm has never lost a case.
But he's about to lose his soul.

Directed by  Taylor Hackford
Written by  Andrew Neiderman, Jonathan Lemkin, Tony Gilroy
Starring:  Keanu Reeves (Kevin Lomax)
Al Pacino (John Milton)
Charlize Theron (Mary Ann Lomax)
Jeffrey Jones (Eddie Barzoon)
Connie Nielsen (Christabella)
Runtime: 144 minutes
Kevin Lomax, a ruthless young Florida attorney that never lost a case, is recruited by the most powerful law firm in the world. In spite of his mother's disagreement, which compares New York City to Babylon, he accepts the offer and the money that comes along. But soon, his wife starts feeling homesick as she witnesses devilish apparitions. However, Kevin is sinking in his new cases and pays less and less attention to his wife. His boss and mentor, John Milton, seems to always know how to overcome every problem and that just freaks Kevin right off. - Steve Richer

Al Pacino is always a good starting point for a movie but in the case of The Devil's Advocate we have much more including the other two main actors, the surprising Keanu Reeves and the beautiful Charlize Theron, the original plot and even a few special effects.

At the beginning the story seems to deal with the typical winning attorney, Kevin Lomax, that has a chance to improve his social position and make success by moving with his beautiful wife in New York to work for an important law firm. However the charismatic and ambiguous character of John Milton makes his appearance quite soon, giving some witty and sometimes offensive speeches, slowly showing off his real identity, the Devil himself! In the meanwhile, strange things happen (voodoo rites, demonic visions, mysterious murders, scary dreams, etc.) and Kevin's wife starts getting more and more depressed and unhappy of her new life...

Given these premises, the dramatic ending was quite predictable. However, what really surprises is to have a much more complex and satisfying finale featuring an unexpected development of the plot and a great last scene.

The music and the few special effects enrich an already excellent photography and setting, everything manages to convey the idea of a demoniac and evil context. The story is quite articulated and it is sometimes funny, sometimes dramatic, sometimes scary but always particularly interesting and catching. The dialogues and the monologues, especially the ones made by the Devil, are often amusing and clever although someone may find them offensive. However, throughout all the movie, there are sex scenes, a little gore, some frightening scene and so it is definitely not for the faint hearted!

In the end, this is a movie about temptation, the good plot, setting and actors manage to produce an optimum surface above which we can start thinking and analysing the deeper meanings. This doesn't mean that it is a particularly thoughtful or ponderous movie, it just gives some good starting point for reflection which is a characteristic I always appreciate in a movie.

Rating: 8.0  ****

Links:  Official Site




© Copyright Sergio Monesi, 1997-1999.
Last updated: 25 Jun 1999