Judd VS US military
High Crimes
Review by Ross Anthony

Ashley Judd is Claire Kubik, a high-powered defense attorney. Jim Caviezel ("Count of Monte Cristo") is the loving husband apprehended suddenly and unexpected by the FBI. Claire spends the rest of the film pleading his case.

The initial set up plays strong with high caliber acting, production, and dialogue, seemingly preparing itself to rival powerful films like "A Few Good men." Unfortunately, these ambitious goals fade as the film descends into unsophisticated scare tactics, B-film thuggery and pointless back and forth.

High CrimesAbout two-thirds into it, Judd makes a move that breathes life back into the project, but the effort is fleeting and futile. Nor does the ending development help to lift the film out of its deep hole.

There's one especially frisky scene where Claire and jailed hubby prepare to embark on a particularly long overdue kiss CUT TO: shots of dead El Salvadorans at the military trial. Yikes, a wince-able tonal juxtaposition.

Morgan stretches his chops slightly as the "on the wagon"/Harley-riding military attorney ace. He's okay. Judd is strong, Caviezel, good, but the script destined to flounder.

Additionally, it still may be a bit early to show US military in a less than flattering light.

  • High Crimes. Copyright © 2002. Rated PG-13.
  • Starring Ashley Judd, Morgan Freeman, Jim Caviezel, Adam Scott, Amanda Peet, Bruce Davison, Tom Bower, Juan Carlos Hernandez.
  • Directed by Carl Franklin. Screenplay by Yuri Zeltser & Cary Bickley.
  • Based on the novel by Joseph Finder.
  • Produced by Arnon Milchan, Janet yang, Jesse B'Franklin at 20th Fox/New Regency/Manifest/Monarch.


Copyright © 2001. Ross Anthony, currently based in Los Angeles, has scripted and shot documentaries, music videos, and shorts in 35 countries across North America, Europe, Africa and Asia. For more reviews visit: RossAnthony.com

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Last Modified: Saturday, 16-Sep-2006 08:08:54 PDT