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The Trials of Cate McCall (2013)

 -  Drama  -  5 April 2014 (USA)
6.3
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Ratings: 6.3/10 from 1,296 users  
Reviews: 12 user | 6 critic

In order to be reinstated to the bar and recover custody of her daughter, a hotshot lawyer, now in recovery and on probation, must take on the appeal of a woman wrongfully convicted of murder.

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Cast

Credited cast:
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Justice Sumpter
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Austin Moseley
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Brinkerhoff
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Bridges
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Detective Welch
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Josh
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Mrs. Stubbs
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Rusty
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Wilson George
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Therapist
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Justice Wender
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Augie
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Lacey
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Loncraine
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Storyline

In California, Cate McCall is an alcoholic lawyer that was put on probation and rehab. She had an argument with a judge that sent her to the Breathalyzer test and the bar put her on probation in a small office. Cate is also fighting to recover custody of her daughter that lives with her father that is moving to Seattle. Cate is assigned to defend Lacey Stubbs, who has appealed claiming that she had been wrongly accused of murdering another woman since there was a trial error. Further, Lacey also tells that she was raped by a guard in the prison. Cate, who has never lost a case, investigates the case with his friend Bridges and they find evidences that might prove that Lacey is innocent and her case is fabricated. But is she really not guilty? Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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When the truth is on trial, everyone is a witness. See more »

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Drama

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Release Date:

5 April 2014 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El engaño  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,000,000 (estimated)
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User Reviews

 
Kate Beckinsale Reading the Dictionary Would Be Interesting
5 April 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Most things that occur in life have happened before so you could say that anything depicted in film is a cliché. Love, murder, war, courtroom drama. . . What scenes, played out on the screen, haven't you been exposed to before?

The interesting thing about legal dramas are the characters involved--who they are, what they think, and of course, what they do. And then there is always the question of justice itself. Was justice actually done? Usually the answer is "no," and it is especially "no" here, just like it too often is "no" in real life.

One of the basic themes in this one is that the guilty are found innocent and the innocent are found guilty. The gullible participants are manipulated into mistaken conclusions, much as we are in real life. Of course, RL is a bit more shady than the simplifications required by the medium of film. It doesn't matter much though, because Kate Beckingsale would be interesting even if she were reading the dictionary.

I admit to being a longtime Kate Beckingsale fanboy but there's no point in offering any resistance to her charms considering she's also a terrific actor and carries the lead role admirably. I don't know the judge's real name but he's perfect too and has played that authoritarian part in many films/TV shows requiring the wise old and lecherous legal beagle.

Nick Nolte gets to play a good guy, something of a mentor to former alcoholic Cate. You've heard that one before but there are some really funny exchanges between them, particularly the one where she jokes she'll let Nolte "do" her if helps with the legal case. I'd be glad to help, too. Unfortunately, she's joking.

Whomever conceived this film did the right thing in showcasing Beckinsale. Her character is mercurial and she alternates among a series of different poses. There's the svelte, buttoned up lawyer, the disintegrating recovering alcoholic, a Pollyanna, and prosecutor, the tough broad, and the weepy mom end of a failed marriage.

For all of that, the plot twists and back stories are rather too plentiful. That seems to be a tendency in films today. Nonetheless, I 'd watch the film again, and I think I will.


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