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Roman J. Israel, Esq.

Director:  Dan Gilroy
Year Released:  2017
Rating:  2.0

'Slightly off' civil rights attorney Israel (Denzel Washington) - who is somewhere on the autism spectrum, I suspect - finds himself jobless when his former employer passes away, so he begins work for the very slick Pierce (Colin Farrell) ... and compromises his own integrity (and breaks the law) when he leaks confidential information about a murder case in exchange for $100k (he's cash-starved, you see, and living in a less-than-cozy section of Los Angeles). Not only is it a stretch to accept Washington as someone not charismatic (and fumbling), so too is it a challenge to willingly go along with Gilroy's script, which shows promise in spurts (thanks, largely, to Washington's go-with-it attitude) but ends up clunky, regularly giving Israel a pulpit to preach ... and having him meet his end in a ridiculous manner. The cynicism that clouds 90% of it ('purity is impossible in today's society') - which includes Israel being beaten up physically or verbally or emotionally - is 'suddenly lifted' in the final minutes, when the Wizard gives everyone their hearts back.

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