I'd seen this already. I'd forgotten I'd seen it right up unto the last scene. That's how underwhelming and forgettable this film is. Harrison Ford looks asleep. Pakula tries to infuse the story with some deeper meaning by making it joyless and slow. It's really quite boring.
A masterclass legal thriller that is superbly directed, shot, edited, and acted. The ending is flawed as it somewhat deflects what came before but the American legal system is still not depicted in the most flattering light. A great audience picture. Also, I got to meet the 1st AC on this film, a true gentlemen whose knowledge and craft was astonishing.
I agree with Miguel - the movie worked very well as an overview of the American (or, for that matter, whichever state's) juridical system. And Ford was good in this. I also liked Raul Julia as Sandy Stern, the defence attorney, and Paul Winfield as the judge. The ending, however, almost ruined it all.
The story of this movie appears typical al the beginning. As it goes through, nevertheless, the director shows us the inner side of American law system, where truth doesn't mean a damn. Apart from this, Harrison Ford stands properly as an attorney who has to defend himself od a case he was prosecuting inicially. Director Alan J. Pakula keeps the suspense rationing the character's secrets. Enjoyable though improvable.