Review by Jeremy Whitlock
I’ve seen a lot of mixed reviews on this film so I went into it with an open mind. Being open minded, I ended up leaving the movie wanting more. While some of the movie was fairly predictable, I feel the story was very well written and the action well paced. Overall, “Law Abiding Citizen” is an excellent film portraying how two high profile actors can share the spotlight and produce a movie with substance.
The story starts with Clyde Shelton (Gerard Butler) watching the murder of his wife and daughter during a home invasion. After the killers are caught, up and coming prosecutor Nick Rice (Jamie Foxx) is persuaded by his boss to offer the killer a light sentence for his testimony against the accomplice. Obviously Clyde isn’t happy with Nick about this.
Ten years later, the murderer and his accomplice are brutally murdered. When asked about the murders, Clyde admits to killing them and makes an offer to Nick: either fix the broken justice system or there will be more deaths. When Nick fails to cooperate, Clyde follows through with his promise and one by one important players in his family’s trial start being killed. Nick is helpless to stop the murders, and unless he cooperates he must sit by and watch as Clyde’s masterpiece unveils all while he is locked in prison.
Only Nick can stop the murders and while he focuses on “not being beat,” he continues to miss the point Clyde is trying to get across, and the killings continue. Each murder is clever, meticulous and executed with the precision of an assassin. The City of Philadelphia begins panicking at the thought of a prison inmate killing people from within the confines of his prison cell.
“Law Abiding Citizen” is a great example of how you can put two high profile actors into the same movie and end up with both equally sharing the spotlight and producing a thrilling movie. Gerard Butler and Jamie Foxx were perfect for their respective roles. Gerard Butler was even nice enough to shoot a scene naked for those of you who are into him.
In the end, “Law Abiding Citizen” is a thinking person’s revenge flick. Not since “Punisher” have I seen someone go to such extreme lengths to avenge the death of one’s family, or to get a point across like in this movie. The detail put into each of Clyde’s killings was amazing. All parts of this movie seemed plausible and I think this realism helps the movie even more. When the movie ended, just short of two hours, I left the theater wishing there was more. I wanted to see more of Clyde’s masterpiece.
Also appearing in the Berthoud Weekly Surveyor.