The Lesser Evil

Watch The Lesser Evil

"Four friends. A deadly secret. One choice."
  • NR
  • 1998
  • 1 hr 37 min
  • 6.5  (716)

The Lesser Evil is a 1998 crime-drama film directed by David Mackay and starring Colm Feore, Tony Goldwyn, and Arliss Howard in the lead roles. The movie revolves around the story of three childhood friends, all of whom are now high-profile lawyers, and their involvement in a case that puts them in an ethical dilemma. The story starts with the murder of a wealthy man, and the prime suspect is a young woman named Leslie. One of the lawyers, Richard (played by Tony Goldwyn), takes up Leslie's case pro-bono, believing that she is innocent. However, as the case progresses, he realizes that there is far more to Leslie's case than meets the eye. The evidence against her is strong, and the only way to save her from the death penalty is to frame another young girl, who is also innocent.

Richard's dilemma is further complicated by the fact that he is running for Attorney General, and any association with such a controversial case could potentially harm his career. His two childhood friends, Tom (played by Arliss Howard) and Daniel (played by Colm Feore), are also high-profile lawyers, and Richard seeks their help in solving the case. However, Tom and Daniel are not as idealistic as Richard and are more concerned with winning the case than doing the right thing.

At its core, The Lesser Evil is a movie about the moral dilemmas faced by lawyers, especially when they have to defend clients who are guilty, or potentially guilty. The movie deftly explores the grey areas of the justice system, and how, often, doing the right thing is not always the easiest thing. The three main characters are complex, with each having their own motivations and character flaws. Tony Goldwyn gives a stellar performance as Richard, the idealistic lawyer who is torn between his conscience and his desire to win at any cost.

The movie is well-paced, with enough twists and turns to keep the audience engaged until the very end. The courtroom scenes are well-choreographed and add to the drama and tension of the movie. The cinematography is also worth mentioning, with the dark color palette adding to the overall mood of the movie.

The Lesser Evil is not just a crime-drama; it is also a movie about friendship and how it can be tested when put under difficult circumstances. The relationship between Richard, Tom, and Daniel is the backbone of the movie, and the chemistry between the three actors is palpable.

In conclusion, The Lesser Evil is a well-written, well-acted movie that explores the moral dilemmas faced by lawyers. The movie raises thought-provoking questions about the justice system and how it can be manipulated to suit the interests of those in power. The performances by the lead actors are exceptional, and the direction is solid. The Lesser Evil is a movie that is definitely worth watching.

The Lesser Evil
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 37 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.5  (716)