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The Rainmaker (1997)

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An underdog lawyer takes on a fraudulent insurance company.

Writers:

John Grisham (novel), Francis Ford Coppola (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
2,589 ( 401)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Matt Damon ... Rudy Baylor
Danny DeVito ... Deck Shifflet
Claire Danes ... Kelly Riker
Jon Voight ... Leo F. Drummond
Mary Kay Place ... Dot Black
Dean Stockwell ... Judge Harvey Hale
Teresa Wright ... Colleen 'Miss Birdie' Birdsong
Virginia Madsen ... Jackie Lemancyzk
Mickey Rourke ... Bruiser Stone
Andrew Shue ... Cliff Riker
Red West ... Buddy Black
Johnny Whitworth ... Donny Ray Black
Wayne Emmons Wayne Emmons ... Prince Thomas
Adrian Roberts ... Butch
Roy Scheider ... Wilfred Keeley
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Storyline

Rudy Baylor is a young attorney out to make a difference in the justice system. He is also the only hope of an elderly couple after their corrupt insurance company refuses to payout a claim that could save their child's life. In this judicial drama, Baylor rails against corporate lawyers, corrupt judges, and abusive husbands, all with the help of a fellow lawyer who hasn't even passed his bar exam. He is facing long odds in the courtroom - and this is only his first case. Written by Steve Richer <sricher@sympatico.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They were totally unqualified to try the case of a lifetime... but every underdog has his day.

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for a strong beating and elements of domestic abuse | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Germany

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 November 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

John Grisham's The Rainmaker See more »

Filming Locations:

California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$40,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$10,626,507, 23 November 1997, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$45,856,732, 15 March 1998
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The first two paragraphs of the news article about the F.B.I. investigation read: "The defendants are pillars of the local legal establishment, with long ties to the community and lots of friends in high places. The accusers, for the most part, are outsiders, newly arrived from out of town, and still eyed with some suspicion by the clubby residents of Memphis. For eighteen months, while federal prosecutors and F.B.I. Agents probed the illicit links between the former Memphis judges and a prominent trial attorney, there had been sub rosa grumbling among other judges and lawyers." See more »

Goofs

With the Great Benefit CEO on witness stand in court, the microphone moves from away from Roy Scheider after being knocked by Matt Damon to in front of him during his testimony. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Rudy Baylor: My father hated lawyers all his life. He wasn't a great guy, my old man. He drank and beat up my mother; he beat me up too. So you might think I became a lawyer just to piss him off. But you'd be wrong. I wanted to be a lawyer ever since I read about the Civil Rights lawyers in the 50s and 60s, and the amazing uses they found for the law. They did what a lot of people thought was the impossible. They gave lawyers a good name. And so I went to law school. And it did piss my father ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

There is a credit for "Poet in Residence". See more »

Connections

Version of The Rainmaker See more »

Soundtracks

How Blue Can You Get
Written by Jane Feather
Performed by B.B. King
Courtesy of MCA Records
Under license from Universal Music Special Markets
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Rookie lawyer fights against evil insurance company
30 July 2017 | by dianeevans-69590See all my reviews

This gentle David and Goliath style story is a delight to watch and an inspiration to viewers to work hard, be determined and maintain self belief against the odds. Matt Damon underplays his role very well. Clare Danes is less believable as a battered wife - I'd be terrified in her shoes, but she maintains a fixed slight irritation when the baseball bat starts swinging. Virginia Madsen steals the movie, making her character shine with integrity and empathy. She appears for about ten minutes, so make the most of her. Micky Rourke? Was he bored, too much trouble or couldn't learn his lines? Seems to be under-used for some reason. I could actually smell Jon Voight's cologne, so well did he play the rich top lawyer in the expensive suit.


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