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Beyond a Reasonable Doubt (2009)

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Remake of the 1956 film noir film "Beyond a Reasonable Doubt" in which a writer's plan to expose a corrupt district attorney takes an unexpected turn.

Director:

Peter Hyams

Writers:

Peter Hyams (screenplay), Douglas Morrow

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jesse Metcalfe ... C.J. Nicholas
Amber Tamblyn ... Ella Crystal
Michael Douglas ... Mark Hunter
Joel David Moore ... Corey Finley
Orlando Jones ... Ben Nickerson
Lawrence P. Beron ... Lieutenant Merchant (as Lawrence Beron)
Sewell Whitney ... Martin Weldon
David Jensen ... Gary Spota
Sharon K. London Sharon K. London ... Judge Sheppard (as Sharon London)
Krystal Kofie Krystal Kofie ... Taieesha
Randal Reeder ... Survivalist Man (as Randel Reeder)
Ryan Glorioso ... Animal Shelter Attendant
Jon McCarthy Jon McCarthy ... Detective Rawley
Grant James ... Aaron Wakefield
Eric Gipson Eric Gipson ... Allen
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Storyline

High profile lawyer Mark Hunter has an impeccable record putting criminals behind bars and is a shoe-in for governor in the upcoming election. But when ambitious rookie journalist, C.J. Nicholas begins investigating Hunter for tampering with evidence to secure his convictions, the district attorney's perfect record is up for scrutiny. Commencing a risky game of cat and mouse with Hunter, C.J. frames himself as a murder suspect to catch the corrupt D.A. in the act. Romantically involved with C.J. but unaware of his assignment, assistant D.A. Ella Crystal becomes caught between her boss's political ambitions and C.J.'s dangerous expose. As mounting evidence stacks up against both men, Ella's own life becomes threatened when she discovers incriminating proof that puts the fate of both C.J's innocence and Hunter's reputation in her hands. Written by karon

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Why would a man frame himself... for murder?


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for a sex scene, violence and brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Saudi Arabia

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 July 2009 (Spain) See more »

Also Known As:

Más allá de la duda See more »

Filming Locations:

Winnipeg, Canada See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$17,164, 13 September 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$32,409, 27 September 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Final film of Dina Merrill. See more »

Goofs

(at around 1h 18 mins) When Ella goes to view the evidence, you can see the tag on the sweat pants as Ella covers it with her thumb. When the tag is shown again seconds later it is totally shredded apart. See more »

Connections

References Jeopardy! (1984) See more »

Soundtracks

Mallorca
Composed by Jonathan Adams
Provided by RoyaltyFreeMusic.com
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A Nutshell Review: Beyond a Reasonable Doubt
28 November 2009 | by DICK STEELSee all my reviews

I had thought RKO Pictures was already defunct, but it's quite telling that a film from its archives got pulled out for a remake, and although not having seen the original film in the 50s directed by Fritz Lang no less, this remake had the that similar promising premise which soon gave way to ridiculousness. Suffice to say that without the twist element, it's no better than a standard, average courtroom drama cum investigative thriller that already laid out its cards and was just going through its motion to the finale. Assault on the justice system this is not to be.

Since Michael Douglas' name got a bigger font size on the poster, let's start with his character, the District Attorney Mark Hunter who is one case away from sealing his man made destiny to become governor. He's quite the confident schmuck who can mesmerize any jury and his straight convictions of the accused through circumstantial and DNA evidence, raises the suspicion of investigative journalist C.J. Nicholas (Jesse Metcalfe of Desperate Housewives fame), whose research seem to point to Hunter artificially engineering evidence in his favour.

An audacious plan gets concocted, and for the sake of a Pulitzer prize, C.J. and career pal Corey (Joel Moore) decide to entrap Hunter into using his deceiving tactics against them in a real murder which they will engineer the circumstantial evidence to point towards C.J., though I wonder if the quest to become famous and climb that corporate ladder would warrant something as risky as this, and what more, the lack of purposeful planning, which allows you the audience to stay one step ahead into just what would happen next.

The second half of the movie then shifts its attention to Amber Tamblyn's Ella, while being the assistant to Mark Hunter, gets romantically involved with C.J. and decides to do a little probing herself, which of course led to her being a target. The rest I'm sure you can pretty much guess for yourself, as this just floats like a buoy in calm waters, not being the investigative thriller it can be, but something that's really, really bland and stands out like an amateur hack job.

Give it a go if you must, but don't expect anything spectacular. The obligatory action sequences all seemed too contrived, boring and pretty much illogical, such as the taunting of someone using a car. I have to admit though that the final words uttered here was quite a ballsy way to end a story, although it can also mean the same words directed at the unsuspecting audience member who didn't come expecting B-movie through and through.


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