Trial and Error (1997)

PG-13  |   |  Comedy, Romance  |  30 May 1997 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.7/10 from 5,130 users  
Reviews: 43 user | 33 critic

An actor poses as a lawyer to help his sick friend, and problems develop.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Kenneth White ...
Keith Mills ...
Zaid Farid ...


Lawyer Charlie Tuttle is defending his wife's relative Benny Gibbs in a class action fraud suit, but when he gets to the city where court takes place, he gets drunk and the following day, when the hearings begin, his friend, actor Richard Rjetti takes his place posing as Charlie. The bad thing is that Richard doesn't know anything about being a lawyer, and Charlie has to teach him as the court goes on. Written by Marcos Eduardo Acosta Aldrete

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


What's a courtroom circus without a couple of clowns? See more »


Comedy | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sexual content | See all certifications »




Release Date:

30 May 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Advogado por Engano  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$4,903,529 (USA) (30 May 1997)


$13,548,764 (USA) (25 July 1997)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Cast members Jennifer Coolidge, Alexandra Wentworth, and McNally Sagal all made guest appearances on the popular TV sitcom "Seinfeld" (1989-1998), on which lead actor Michael Richards starred for its entire run. See more »


[last lines]
Richard Rietti: [on motorcycle] Oh yeah, ha ha! Oh! We should definitely slow down now, okay? No, don't go faster! Aaaah! Whoa, okay, whoa!
Elizabeth: Hey, watch it!
Richard Rietti: What am I supposed to hold on to?
Elizabeth: Not - that!
Richard Rietti: Well I gotta hold on to something, it's dangerous.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Sound technician Brian McPherson is credited as "hothead technician." See more »


Ooh Poo Pah Doo
Written by Jessie Hill
Performed by Taj Mahal
Courtesy of Private Records
A Division of BMG Entertainment
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User Reviews

18 August 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Richard Rietti!!! Best character name in movie history. Worth the price of admission just to watch Rietti fall and bumble...and fall...and bumble. Let us also not forget another vintage performance by the one and only Rip Torn. I would pay money to watch a Ron Popeil Infomercial if Rip Torn was prominently involved.

Jeff Daniels gets it done as the schlub lawyer who likes his chicken salad with mustard, not mayonnaise. Finally, we have Charlize Theron at her absolute apex (lookswise, not as an actress...clearly). You just knew it would lead to bigger & better things for her, and it did.

Worth checking out. RIETTI!!!!!

8 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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