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177 Ratings

Roman J Israel, Esq.

Directed by Dan Gilroy
United States, 2017
Crime, Drama


An attorney for a big L.A. law firm discovers some unfavorable things about his late partner and decides to right his wrongs.

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Roman J Israel, Esq. Directed by Dan Gilroy

Awards & Festivals

Academy Awards

2018 | Nominee: Best Lead Actor

Screen Actors Guild Awards

2018 | Nominee: Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role

Golden Globes (USA)

2018 | Nominee: Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Drama



The Los Angeles of this film is murky — ​even the ocean water looks muddy — but writer-director Dan Gilroy makes it crystal clear that Roman is a man out of time. Hitting that characterization hard is the film’s main strategy.
April 19, 2018
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Gilroy truncates and stifles a fascinating character in order to keep the story moving relentlessly forward on a narrow track of synthetic action. For that matter, the very casting of Washington suggests Gilroy’s fundamental misdirection: for the character of Roman J. Israel, not even an actor as great as Washington could suffice; what Gilroy needed was an energumen, someone on the order of Eddie Murphy, someone whose energy threatens to break out of the stultifying script at every moment.
January 30, 2018
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Washington is playing somebody so brilliant that he can barely pass for normal. It’s a very weird performance, and it verges at times on giddy embarrassment, which is actually sort of exciting. The movie’s main sources of suspense are whether it’s ever going to settle on a genre and if its star is going to fully implode while trying to hold things together. He doesn’t, but it’s hard to hold it against him: He’s doing the best he can under the circumstances.
November 22, 2017
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