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|Index||324 reviews in total|
The goal of a story is to introduce the observer to the characters at the very beginning. Few movies do this with such smoothness as 'A Few Good Men'. Especially the main character, Daniel Kaffee. His plea bargain with the prosecutor on the ball field exemplifies the character introduction and development. You immediately get the impression that he is a sharp defender but only wanting to breeze through his obligation to the Navy by doing as little as possible. All of the other characters are developed just as well.
This is an EXCELLENT film! It was extrememly well written, well acted, and well-directed! Kudos to Rob Reiner for an excellent directing job! Tom Cruise played a great Daniel Kaffee. He was direct, to the point, etc. Demi Moore and Kevin Pollak and the great Jack Nicholson did great jobs as well and they all should be commended. If you haven't seen this movie, GET IT!! I couldn't recommend it more! The story gets you going and keeps up until the end!
First reason that I watched this film because there are superstars in it
such as Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson. The story is predictable. There is a POWERFUL scene. The scene that Cruise put Nicholson in court. Thrilling ... the word "CRYSTAL", give a new meaning to me.
If you like a story about military and courtroom drama, watch it.
This film, while entertaining, takes on the typical Hollywood attitude of 'Bad Military!' (background sound of a nose being swatted by a newspaper) and is 'Top Gun' with different characters, but a redundant story line.(Naval Officer trying to live up to his fathers legacy) Don't get me wrong; I liked the film. It didn't contain needless sex, violence (not pertaining to the story line) or gratuitous profanity, and provided a decent mix of drama and comedy. However, it is Rob Reiners disgruntled view of the United States Military, typical of the liberal '60's views. Yes, the armed services teach that the cohesiveness of the unit depend on every man following orders, but stating that soldiers are taught not to think, and are robots is irresponsible and laughable. I speak as a US Navy veteran. I think that Col. Jessup's monologue regarding 'sleeping under the blanket of freedom I provide, and then questioning the manner in which I provide it' says it all
The courtroom is an ample and inexhaustible well that provides Hollywood
with enough dramatic material just, just in case movies scribes run out of
good ideas. But it seems that the writers of this genre themselves have
out of good ideas for this genre, turning courtroom drama into
The formula has often gone this way: defendant has no case, long and overdrawn character cross-examination, vital witness and/or evidence pops up, accused is found guilty, case close and everyone lives happily ever after.
It is no different in Rob Reiner's A Few Good Men. We knew Lt. Caffey's clients' backs are against the wall. We know that during the course of the next fifty minutes or so, we will be shocked at every evidence that surfaces and, refusing to believe anything we see firsthand, we will be on an emotional and mental tightrope till the jury's out. We see Col. Nathan Jessep's face and we suspect. We see Col. Markinson's face and we're very certain the devil's just around.
The film's contrivances though, are in relation to plot, which doesn't mean a lot in this film genre so A Few Good Men atones itself handsomely through top-notch acting. (Dialogues are also A-grade in poetic sarcasm but I don't know if it is to the writer's credit or to the actor's delivery.)
There's nothing more anybody could say about how the actors fit perfectly well in their roles. Among the three defense attorneys, nobody essays that unworded reluctance better than Kevin Pollack. The usually nasty film villain, J.T. Walsh convinces us to offer his guilt-stricken character sympathy this time, and we do. Two of the bratpackers are given acting baptisms of fire here, too. Sutherland's shady lieutenant and Bacon's 'strictly business' gentleman/lawyer are welcome transition from their boy-next-door images. Unfortunately, the lone female lead played by Moore doesn't really shine in this testosterone-saddled film. Either the role wasn't so difficult to cast or there were just too many excellent performances.
Now, for the two leads. At the onset, there's nothing really new for Cruise to work here. Boyish arrogance, huge chip on his shoulder, wisecrack, we've seen Tom do this before and even an intelligent script doesn't really save him from the thought of being stereotyped on this film. Everything changes however, when he gets into the ring to trade barbs with Nicholson. If Caffey stunned the court audience while he systematically leveled Jessep to submission, Cruise stunned the movie audience with a never-before-seen onscreen bravado. If Caffey proved he deserved to play in the big league, Cruise proved his acting deserved to be paid notice. Remember, in the history of Hollywood, being in Jack Nicholson's face is not an enviable position, let alone getting into his head but only a few, like Cruise's Caffey, tames the beast Jack and convinces the jury -- the audience -- that he can overcome.
As for Jack, his colonel appeared in only a third of the film but the kind of phobia his role induces is a toast to the kind of ubertalent Nicholson is. If anybody has any doubt about Cruise's acting in this film, look at Tom's lieutenant slugging it out with Jack's colonel. One has to be an exceptional actor not to flinch at Nicholson's evil eyes or his sick grin.
Who says Mr. Nice Guy can't look straight into the devil's eyes?
The three leads are in top form in this exciting legal film. Although it seems the outcome looks predictable by the time we reach the courtroom scene, it's hard to deny the star power and quality of this picture. Jack Nicholson's performance alone makes this a must see!! This film is the kind of early 90's drama that doesn't wear out it's welcome. *** out of ****
Riveting stage adaptation about honor and murder, as hotshot young lawyer Cruise works with Moore and Pollak to uncover the truth about a mysterious death within the US military. Nice performances all around, particularly from Cruise and Nicholson, whose handful of minutes onscreen create an indelible impression of noble misdirection. A tense, involving script and wonderful work from Reiner make this a highly entertaining and affecting film.
I never really enjoyed movies like I do today until 1992. It was during that year that I started watching movies more and more. My favorite movie of that year at the time was Aladdin, but hey, I was 12. Anyway, as I watched the Academy Awards for the first time (for the year 1992), I noticed the film "A Few Good Men." Immediately, I was interested. I had been a Tom Cruise fan since "Top Gun" and Demi Moore was great in "Ghost," but this one guy seemed really cool. His name is Jack Nicholson. "A Few Good Men" is one of those few movies that features acting at its absolute best. Great work by Kevin Bacon and Kevin Pollak was just icing on the cake! The fact that the Academy felt "Unforgiven" was better that year makes me sick. This is one of those movies that I watch at least 3 times a year because it is so good and it never gets old. The main reason: Jack Nicholson is one of the finest actors in the history of entertainment. That's the truth, and "You Can't Handle the Truth!"
When I first saw this film, I was positively stunned. This film certainly
belongs to one of the past decades best films. One thing that can be truly
noticed is the formation of the cast. It was such a powerful ensemble that
it is assuredly one of the films exceptionality. But more elaborately, it
is Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson who delighted me most. While the Academy
Awards overlooked Tom Cruise for his superb performance, I am glad to see
that the members of the academy took note of Jack Nicholsons compelling
While there is the plot to talk about, which I am not going to further elaborate because I dont want to spoil, the whole story would seem to be interesting as it brings up controversial issues as well. The only thing to say about is that there is a powerful story line packed with peremptory themes which are outstandingly delivered by an array of marvellous performers. Whew! That should pretty sum it up in the last line.
As I watched this run of the mill courtroom plot unfold I kept wondering.
What is the incredible appeal of Tom Cruise and Demi Moore? Both of them did
do some fair acting in A Few Good Men but just as often they just looked
good. The camera loves them, especially with the fine direction and
photography in this film.
There is much more here than just good looks. Behind Demi and Tom is a great performance by Jack Nicholson. It is terrific acting moving from charm, then contempt to flaming anger. Nicholson alone really helps this movie. This is not to take away the efforts of the film makers who do their job well. And by focusing on the pretty faces or emotions of the actors we can overlook the movie's shortcomings. Speaking of emotional performances, I was moved by the one by the corporal accused by the military played by Wolfgang Bodison.
Don't expect an insight into military life here. The depth of many of the characters is pretty thin. Also, this has all been done many times before and in more exciting ways (See the Caine Mutiny or No Way Out). Still, there are more positives than negatives with A Few Good Men and it is certainly worth watching just to hear Nicholson say, "You can't handle the truth!".
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