Based on the bestseller by John Grisham, Runaway Jury
is a slick thriller that's exciting enough to overcome the gaps in its plot. The ultimate target has been changed: Grisham's legal assault on the tobacco industry was switched to the hot-button issue of gun control (no doubt to avoid comparison to The Insider
) in a riveting exposé of jury-tampering. Gene Hackman plays the ultra-cynical, utterly unscrupulous pawn of the gun-makers, using an expert staff and advanced electronics to hand-pick a New Orleans jury that will return a favorable verdict; Dustin Hoffman (making his first screen appearance with real-life former roommate Hackman) defends the grieving widow of a gun-shooting victim with idealistic zeal, while maverick juror John Cusack and accomplice Rachel Weisz play both ends against the middle in a personal quest to hold gun-makers accountable. It's riveting stuff, even when it's obvious that Grisham and director Gary Fleder have glossed over any details that would unravel the plot's intricate design. --Jeff Shannon
From master storyteller John Grisham and the director of Don't Say A Word comes a taut suspense-thriller that "grabs hold of you and never lets go" (Philadelphia Metro). In their first film together, screen legends Gene Hackman and Dustin Hoffman face off in this electrifying nail-biter about a ruthless jury consultant who'll do anything to win. With lives and millions of dollars at stake, the fixer plays a deadly cat-and-mouse game with a jury member (John Cusack) and a mysterious woman (Rachel Weisz) who offer to "deliver" the verdict to the highest bidder. Packed with danger, intrigue and pulse-pounding twists and turns, Runaway Jury rules!