The Devils Advocate 1997 Movie Keanu Reeves as Kevin Lomax in a courtroom talking to the jury

The Devil’s Advocate [1997]

When it comes to titles that reveal the story right away, The Devil’s Advocate is perhaps the best. Now that we got that out of the way, let’s dig into this masterpiece. Based on Andrew Neiderman’s novel of the same name, this is an engaging thriller with an intriguing story. Movies with religious motives have always suffered from perspective issues. Only classics like Angel Heart or The Serpent and the Rainbow managed to avoid this by going deeper into the darkness. The Devil’s Advocate remains firmly centered in the mainstream reality of the nineties reaching a much wider audience.

It plays like a musical, but instead of music we have an intriguing and thought-provoking script. And instead of dancing we have awesome cinematography and camera-work. Although it seems that Keanu isn’t capable of any demanding roles (I guess that he will always be Ted) here he was acceptable, with almighty Al Pacino overshadowing everyone. The Devil’s Advocate is for everyone who enjoys the dark side, it takes us on a journey there and shows that it actually isn’t so bad there. In fact, maybe we don’t need to go anywhere…

Kevin Lomax is a young, successful lawyer from Florida, who cares only about winning the case, which he proves after the jury acquits his client accused of pedophilia (Frank Sobotka RIP). After this feat, he is summoned to New York by a powerful law firm along with his beautiful wife Mary Ann.

This firm is led by a charismatic and mysterious John Milton who seems to know the answer to every question. As Kevin gets more and more caught up in the business, he grows more distant from his wife who seems to be having visions of the Devil himself. Scared for her and Kevin she urges him to leave the glamorous life in New York and go back to Florida, as Milton tightens his grip on young and impressionable Kevin…

With a runtime of over two hours, The Devil’s Advocate is never boring or pretentious. The pacing was perfect, giving you time to wind down before the next big hit. And there will be hits and plot twists, I can tell you that much. And there will be nudity. Now that sounds like a movie I want to watch. I just hope that Daniel Day-Lewis is not the lead (still didn’t watch the oil epic). Since the story revolves around lawyers and powerful men, we will see some imposing offices and homes. Vanity can be a bitch man.

When you think about the portrayal of the Devil in movies we either get one who’s a scary monster, or some sort of force, but we never get a person who is actually allowed to make its case as Al Pacino does so beautifully. The need for control and hierarchy that the primitive tribal societies felt were expressed in their religious beliefs. And those religious beliefs were carried over into modern religions. Once you start questioning this, it simply falls apart before your eyes. Once it does, you can see what they were trying to do and how it went wrong and was used for the benefit of the individuals. And not just benefit, just sheer fucking chaos.

Now people usually stop thinking in this direction at the very beginning of the questioning sensing that they might become atheists. Once they do this, they start despising all those who did venture forth, compensating for their own lack of courage to essentially grow up for the second time. And I have to stop myself before I start preaching here. After all, Rabbit Reviews is primarily a movie recommendation site. Religion is one of the things that just makes me write and write. And to make things perfectly clear, I’m an atheist. In conclusion, check out The Devil’s Advocate and if you want, tell me what you think about.

Director: Taylor Hackford

Writers: Andrew Neiderman, Jonathan Lemkin, Tony Gilroy

Cast: Keanu Reeves, Al Pacino, Charlize Theron, Jeffrey Jones, Craig T. Nelson, Tamara Tunie

Fun Facts: The character of John Milton comes from John Milton, the author of “Paradise Lost,” the classic epic poem about man’s fall from God’s grace. When Lomax is in Milton’s office, he says “Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven,”. This is from Book I Line 263 of the same work.


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