A Few Good Men

1992, Movie, R, 138 mins

Review

FEW GOOD MEN, A
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Directed by Rob Reiner and adapted from Aaron Sorkin's hit Broadway play, A FEW GOOD MEN starts out by treading some very familiar ground.

Tom Cruise plays Lt. J.G. Daniel Kaffee, a second-generation lawyer who lives in the shadow of his late, revered father. When he's handed a case involving the death of a young Marine during an unofficial disciplinary procedure, Kaffee does what comes naturally: he works out a quick, clever plea bargain with the prosecuting officer (Kevin Bacon) and then goes back to softball practice.

Not so fast! Here comes Lt. Cdr. Joanne Galloway (Demi Moore), an earnest, uncompromising colleague who's convinced there's more to this case than meets even the most beady military eye. Galloway despises Kaffee's glib opportunism, but also recognizes that he's a potentially great lawyer--the only one good enough, in fact, to get to the bottom of the case and topple the man behind it all, His Extreme Scariness Col. Nathan R. Jessep (Jack Nicholson).

It looks for a while as though this might get tedious, with Galloway woodenly haranguing Kaffee as he slugs away with his beloved baseball bat, doing the Tom Cruise callow youth routine. But once Kaffee decides to go to trial, confronting his own oedipal hang-ups and taking on the might of the Naval heirarchy, he becomes winningly believable. The final scene, when Kaffee locks horns with Jessep, more than makes up for the predictability of what's come before. leave a comment

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