Communist Radicals hijack Air Force One with The U.S. President and his family on board. The Vice President negotiates from Washington D.C., while the President, a Veteran, fights to rescue the hostages on board.
Rozat Sabich - Rusty to most that know him, even in formal circumstances - is the Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney for Kindle County, Illinois. His wife, Barbara Sabich, has been struggling with focus on completing her Ph.D. dissertation in Mathemetics - a thus far ten year process - she who nonetheless is applying for a college teaching position. They are generally in a loving, supportive marriage, Barbara who seems to have gotten over Rusty's infidelity with his colleague Carolyn Polhemus, an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney. Carolyn is ambitious, she who, in part, used Rusty to try and climb up the ladder. Barbara will still throw the issue of Carolyn in his face whenever there are problems between the two. Rusty and Carolyn's affair is unknown to others in their personal and professional circles. Rusty is handed the most personal case of his career when his boss and mentor, Chief Prosecuting Attorney Raymond Horgan, assigns him the case to discover who killed Carolyn, her dead body...Written by
When Rusty is discussing the case in Stern's office, there is a small figurine of a deer on the end table holding the lamp. When the camera angle changes to Rusty sitting next to the same table, the figurine is gone. See more »
I'm a prosecutor. I'm part of the business of accusing, judging and punishing. I explore the evidence of a crime and determine who is charged, who is brought to this room to be tried before his peers. I present my evidence to the jury and they deliberate upon it. They must determine what really happened. If they cannot, we will not know whether the accused deserves to be freed or should be punished. If they cannot find the truth, what is our hope of justice?
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This is cracking matinée fare. The cast is a big pool of Hollywood stalwarts as a fine supporting ensemble giving a thoughtful, adult vehicle to a typically thoughtful, adult lead from Harrison Ford. The drama is quite quiet and internal: don't be put off, as the cast handle it in a way decided non-European, investing characters with credible melodramatics and keeping everything entirely engaging. Some of the best courtroom set pieces I can remember.
The plot is a detailed psychological thriller that one finds hard to keep absolutely on top of, yet Pakula keeps his eye on the top layer. The story unfolds steadily and inexorably. I watched it for a second time on DVD this morning and even knowing the ending and the twists that bring it about I couldn't see them flagged up at any point in Ford's performance.
It's a film about the strengths and weaknesses of law - of civilisation - of the pitfalls of trying to be moral (referred to as 'ideal' throughout). Above all it tries to address humanity and love which it does patiently, accurately and really very entertainingly 8/10
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