Law Abiding Citizen – Movie Review

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Law Abiding Citizen

Starring Gerard Butler and Jamie Foxx
Directed by F. Gary Gray

Rated: R
Run Time: 108 mins
Genre: Drama/ Action/ Thriller
5 frames out of 5

Have you ever watched a movie that within the first 5 minutes, felt like a punch to the face? That you wonder what the hell just happened you’re that shocked? Justice may be blind but in Law Abiding Citizen, the truth may set you free if it can be proven in court.

Clyde Shelton (Gerard Butler) is a loving family man that lost everything that he cherishes in a instant. A home invasion that turned very violent set Clyde into a downward spiral.
Somewhere down the line the killers are caught. During the trial hearing of Darby (Christian Stolte), one of the men that murdered Clyde’s family is facing some pretty heavy charges. Assistant DA Nick Rice (Jamie Foxx) is assigned to the Shelton case. Nick is a hot shot lawyer that has a 96% conviction rate and isn’t about to break his streak if he’s ever going to make it to District Attorney. Instead of listening to what Clyde is begging him to do, he cuts a deal behind the scenes with Darby’s team and gets out in 3 years. Clyde is devastated. Outside the courthouse, Nick makes a statement to the press aout the case. Out comes the Darby, who walks up to Nick and shakes his hand thanking him for the “deal”. Clyde witnesses this exchange and catches Nick’s eye. The devastation, anger and vengeance that you see brewing inside of Clyde is a foreshadowing of future events.

Ten years pass and Darby’s accomplice, Ames (Josh Stewart) is about to be put to death by lethal injection. As the procedure goes underway, something goes horribly awry. The dosage that he was given had been tampered with and suffered a horrible death. Was it a karmic bitch slap or something more sinister? Once the evidence is collected, etched into the side of one of the canisters is a phrase that Nick recalls from the original hearing.

Meanwhile while the police are trying to gather evidence, across town Darby is now a free man. He still set in his crooked ways and is about to be charged with his accomplice’s murder. As the police roll in, he flees and falls right into trap that has been a long time coming.

Nick and his team are perplexed. Who would want both of the two criminals dead? Who would have a strong enough motive to commit such a crime? Hmmmm, if you think really hard (or not) I bet you can figure out whodunit.

You get the prize if you guessed Clyde. Now is where the fun starts. How do you stop a man so hell-bent on correcting the system, taking out people left and right that had been involved with the case all from the comfort of his nice cold, cramped jail cell? Only the work of a terrifyingly brilliant sociopath, orchestrating the most chilling, complex vendetta known.

In this movie, you are in a sick way rooting for Clyde to complete his agenda. It is a brilliantly written film, full of twists and turns that when you think you have the whole thing figured out it whips you off into a different direction. Gerard Butler gives an excellent performance as a man done wrong by the justice system and twists that rage into a brilliant sociopath. Jamie Foxx is cast again as the cocky young lawyer that thinks that he can do no wrong.

Things to watch for: If you are squeamish about blood and guts, be prepared to cover your eyes. This movie has a lot of graphic violence that is surprising and inventive. Gerard Butler’s abs and bare ass make a wonderful cameo. Very cool cinemagraphic shots and excellent visual effects.

Who should see this movie: People who love a good thriller/ crime drama. Fans of Gerard Butler & Jamie Foxx.

See it in the Theater or Rent it? This one is definitely worth seeing on the big screen due to the cinematical elements.

About Lisa Minzey

Lisa Minzey is Editor in Chief of The Reel She has written for Phoenix Film Foundation, an online contributor for and is known to write a screenplay or 12. She's worked in Hollywood in various forms, but her first love is writing. She currently resides in Los Angeles.

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