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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 202,165 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


How do you stop a killer who is already behind bars? 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 »


The camera in the interrogation room/cage does not have a cable in it. However, the camera could very well be broadcasting a wireless signal, as any loose cable could be cut/unplugged to break the signal, or used as a weapon in the possession of a prisoner. See more »


Nick Rice: All you're doing is destroying the memory of your daughter. And causing the same pain that you're suffering from.
See more »


Featured in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #18.17 (2010) See more »


Sin's a Good Man's Brother
Written by Mark Farner
Performed by Grand Funk Railroad
Courtesy of Capitol Records
Under license from EMI Film & Television Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Citizen Abides
16 October 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

A solid movie. It was not predictable. The actors were great in their roles except for a sub-par Leslie Bibb (TV actress with waning looks). After the first five minutes I thought I made my assumptions of what was going to happen but I was totally wrong.

Gerard Butler and Jamie Foxx work perfect against each other. There are a few lulls in the movie towards the end but overall it was a real good movie.

Perhaps the message of this movie can somehow persuade real change in our legal practices. It is worth seeing. The way the film is shot and the sound effects make this an intense movie.

137 of 232 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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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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