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Law Abiding Citizen (2009)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Thriller  |  16 October 2009 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 202,010 users   Metascore: 34/100
Reviews: 423 user | 212 critic | 26 from

A frustrated man decides to take justice into his own hands after a plea bargain sets one of his family's killers free. He targets not only the killer but also the district attorney and others involved in the deal.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Emerald-Angel Young ...
Denise Rice (as Emerald Angel Young)
Rupert Ames (as Joshua Stewart)


Clyde Shelton's family is brutally murdered. The ones responsible are caught. However, because of improper procedure, the D.A., Nick Rice only has circumstantial evidence. So he decides to get one of them to testify against the other. When Shelton learns of this, he is not happy. Ten years later, the one who was convicted is being executed but something goes wrong; his execution goes awry and he suffers. They learn that someone tampered with the machine. And the other one is found dead, killed in a gruesome manner. Rice suspects Shelton, so he has him picked up. At first, Shelton agrees to a plea agreement with Rice but changes his mind. It appears that Shelton is not done, it appears he blames the whole system and is declaring war on it going after everyone involved with his family's case. So Rice has to stop him but Shelton is way ahead of him. Written by

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The System Must Pay See more »


Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong bloody brutal violence and torture, a scene of rape, and pervasive language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

16 October 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Días de ira  »

Box Office


$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$21,039,502 (USA) (16 October 2009)


$73,343,413 (USA) (29 January 2010)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

| |



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Catherine Zeta-Jones was considered for the role of Mayor April Henry. See more »


Assuming the movie takes place in 2009, the seventh generation Honda Accord (introduced in 2003) seen behind Clyde as Clyde watches Nick shaking Darby's hand during the press conference in 1999 would not have existed. See more »


Detective Dunnigan: [to Nick Rice, after finding Darby's dismembered body] Good news counselor, we found Darby... I gotta say though, he's looked better.
See more »


Written by Tom Araya (as Tomas Araya), Kerry King and Jeff Hanneman
Performed by Slayer
Courtesy of American Recordings, a unit of Sony Music Entertainment
By Arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Law Abiding Citizen will not disappoint.
25 September 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This movie really takes the cake. It's focused on a father (Clyde) who gets beaten and his wife and daughter are killed by 2 crooks. However the crooks' punishment was dimmed down because of a deal made by the lawyers(Jamie Fox). 10 years later, Clyde decides to take out the entire corrupt justice system.

This movie really keeps you on the edge of your seat, and the main character Clyde really makes this movie something memorable and just extraordinary. You can compare Clyde to the Joker pretty much, but in my opinion 10 times better. Clyde devises sneaky and cunning ways by taking down his victims and the whole sense on whether he is the hero or villain also adds to the excitement. Jamie Fox also does a great job playing his character, a heroic yet corrupt lawyer.

There are a few scenes that will guaranteed make you laugh and a few scenes that will pretty much tell you that Clyde is just one kickbutt character, no questions about it. Every scene you will be wondering what will happen next, because you honestly won't know. The movie has a few twists and turns and will always keep you guessing. If you want to see something that is highly suspenseful, will keep you on the edge of your seat, and includes 2 very unique and questionable characters, then you must see this movie. Law Abiding Citizen will not disappoint.

290 of 532 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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To All Of You Complaining About ksgirl81
Couldve been a great movie if... ovallejr09
Why the ending was disappointing mauness
Not even remotely possible....ptp wanderin
Did Nick and Sara have an affair? rllmm-1
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