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Lawless (2012)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama  |  29 August 2012 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 171,750 users   Metascore: 58/100
Reviews: 273 user | 352 critic | 38 from Metacritic.com

Set in Depression-era Franklin County, Virginia, a trio of bootlegging brothers are threatened by a new special deputy and other authorities angling for a cut of their profits.



(screenplay), (novel)
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1 win & 8 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Tim Tolin ...
Deputy Jeff Richards
Sheriff Hodges
Tizwell Minnix


In 1931, in Franklin County, Virginia, Forrest Bondurant is a legend as immortal after surviving the war. Together with his brothers Howard and the coward Jack, the Bondurant family has a distillery and bootlegging business. When the corrupt District Attorney Mason Wardell arrives in Franklin with the unscrupulous Special Deputy Charles Rakes, the Bondurant family refuses to pay the required bribe to the authorities. Rakes pursues the brothers and unsuccessfully tries to find their distillery. Meanwhile Forrest hires the waitress Maggie, a woman with a hidden past in Chicago, and they fall in love with each other. Jack courts the preacher's daughter Bertha Minnix and deals a great load of alcoholic liquor with the powerful gangster Floyd Banner. Jack shows off in Franklin attracting the attention of Rakes that finds the location of their distillery. When he kills the crippled Cricket Pete, the locals join forces to face the corrupt authorities. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


When the law became corrupt, outlaws became heroes.


Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong bloody violence, language and some sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

29 August 2012 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Promised Land  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$26,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$10,001,566 (USA) (31 August 2012)


$37,397,291 (USA) (21 November 2012)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Tom Hardy's character was originally supposed to be slimmer but Hardy had to bulk up for the movie The Dark Knight Rises (2012). See more »


The double-yellow line on the paved road in the opening scene. There would hardly have been any pavement in rural Virginia, let alone stripes, at the time. See more »


Floyd Banner: I respect you Bondurants standing up to that Commonwealth's District Attorney. He's got everybody in his pocket. He takes a shit and half of Virginia falls out his ass.
See more »


End Crawl
Written by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis
Performed by The Bootleggers, Nick Cave, and Warren Ellis
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Much better than most Hollywood fare
11 October 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Reading the other reviews, I'm amused by the number of reviewers who don't have a clue about how southern rural hill people behave (and esp. behaved back in the 1920s). They accuse Hardy, and to some extent LaBeouf, of bad acting because their characters are so laconic (that means they don't run off at the mouth a lot) and inward and don't wear every emotion on their sleeves. Then they mightily praise Oldman and Pearce for great acting when they were, in fact, just playing northern urban gangsters who like to behave over the top---the very thing that disgusts southern sensibilities.

The folks making those review comments have probably spent too much time watching movies based on comic books and not enough time with dramatic characters representing actual human beings. So don't pay attention to their noise.

Instead, watch the flick. It's good. I enjoyed it.

200 of 255 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Tom Hardy's voice the_spiral
Did women drive back then??? jdelacruz07
what happend to maggie at that night? sanjoydevil
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Who was that topless women running in the road ? coue
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