The Lincoln Lawyer – 1 Star

Matthew McConaughey plays a smarmy, slick, charming southern lawyer . . . in every single movie he makes.  He does it again here, inexplicably drawling his way through a role as a hotshot Los Angeles criminal attorney retained to defend Ryan Phillipe, a rich boy accused of a brutal rape.

The entire film rests on selling you the real possibility that Phillipe is innocent.  And there is not one moment when you believe that Phillipe is innocent.

Look at him.  Guilty, guilty, guilty.

Now that the story is hosed, we’re left with McConaughey’s schtick, a motley crew of character actors without character (dewy-eyed Marisa Tomei, as McConaughey’s ex-wife prosecutor; tough old cop Bryan Cranston; hippie P.I. William H. Macy; and the peripatetic bondsman John Leguizamo) and “twists” so implausible that Director Brad Furman must have assumed the audience had checked out by the time of the reveals.

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