Mick (McConaughey) runs his successful L.A. law practice from his vintage Lincoln. He has a daughter with his public-prosecutor ex Maggie (Tomei) and works closely with his private-eye pal Frank (Macy). His new case involves the wealthy Louis (Phillippe), who claims he didn't violently assault a prostitute.
But the more Mick and Frank look into things, the fishier they get. And Mick will need to do some unorthodox things to win the case against the tenacious D.A. (Lucas) and achieve real justice.
Like a TV show, Furman directs using close-up camerawork and quick-patter dialog. The result feels complicated, even though we don't have much trouble following it, which means that the glossed-over plot holes niggle away at us right up to the rushed final act. Even so, along the way we can relax and enjoy the story's convolutions as well as the somewhat underdeveloped relationships.
McConaughey barely breaks a sweat in the role, although with his craggy face he's starting to look like Clint Eastwood. He ricochets effectively between the supporting actors, with interaction that's unambiguous in its resentment, loyalty or simmering sexual tension, as required. The cast is uniformly fine, although their characters barely register. Only Phillippe stirs interest as a spoiled rich guy who from the start clearly has some dark shadows.
Meanwhile, Furman creates a 1970s vibe to go along with the car: groovy music, sassy side roles, silky editing and feathered blond hair (that would be Macy) add to this, although it's never really carried through. And the one proper Blaxpoiltation-style character (Mason as Mick's driver) never quite comes to life. Actually, not much pays off properly. The eponymous car barely figures into the story (and he has a real office anyway). But with such a rambling, entertaining plot, the film is at least forgettable fun, like a trashy novel you read on a flight then leave behind on the seat when plane lands.
Run time: 118 mins
In Theaters: Friday 18th March 2011
Box Office USA: $58.0M
Box Office Worldwide: $85.4M
Distributed by: Lionsgate Films
Production compaines: Lionsgate
Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5
Rotten Tomatoes: 83%
Fresh: 138 Rotten: 28
IMDB: 7.3 / 10
Director: Brad Furman
Screenwriter: John Romano
Starring: Matthew McConaughey as Mickey Haller, Marisa Tomei as Maggie McPherson, Ryan Phillippe as Louis Roulet, William H. Macy as Frank Levin, Josh Lucas as Ted Minton, John Leguizamo as Val Valenzuela, Michael Peña as Jesus Martinez, Bob Gunton as Cecil Dobbs, Frances Fisher as Mary Windsor, Bryan Cranston as Detective Lankford, Trace Adkins as Eddie Vogel, Laurence Mason as Earl, Margarita Levieva as Reggie Campo, Michaela Conlin as Heidi Sobel, Pell James as Lorna, Shea Whigham as DJ Corliss, Katherine Moennig as Gloria, Michael Paré as Detective Kurlen
Those bright sparks at Pixar have done it again, taking a fiercely original approach to...
Slick direction and meaty performances may be enough for some viewers, but this boxing drama's...
Loose and impressionistic, this beautifully shot film traces the career of a DJ who pioneered...
Without a single moment of originality, this found-footage horror movie really deserves to be the...
An intriguing premise keeps the audience gripped for about 20 minutes before the movie runs...
The increasingly stale Marvel formula gets a blast of fresh air in this rollocking adventure...
An unusually inventive approach brings this story to life, as the filmmakers get into the...
Fans of the surprise 2012 hit Ted will find plenty to love in this sequel,...