The Judge Reviews

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October 9, 2014
There were reports that Duvall initially turned down this script, only to reconsider because he wanted to work with Downey. Good call.
October 9, 2014
Always the most inscrutable of the great '70s actors, Duvall uses his great, unassuming American face to convey pride, confusion, pain and compassion - sometimes all at once.
October 9, 2014
More than two hours of sharp dialogue and great acting, if not particularly inventive plotting.
October 9, 2014
While it's good to know that character-driven dramas still have a place at the movies, "The Judge" might have worked better as a television miniseries.
October 9, 2014
The script flippantly points out its own cliches, while rarely transcending them; when an unfamiliar idea shows up, it's usually a bad on.
October 9, 2014
Dobson ... may be a bit clumsy out of the gate with more sensitive material, but wisely gives his seasoned cast a lot of rope.
October 9, 2014
Despite playing with a stacked deck, "The Judge" is guilty of exceeding expectations.
October 9, 2014
The leads are typecast to perfection -- Downey glib and aggressive, Duvall principled and crotchety -- but the legal drama is freighted with stale family and interpersonal conflicts, and the comic relief is unfortunate
October 9, 2014
Of the 141 minutes in "The Judge," roughly 70 work well, hold the screen and allow a ripe ensemble cast the chance to do its thing, i.e., act.
October 9, 2014
The best thing about "The Judge" is watching Downey and Duvall, as actors, playing off each other. They listen and react and takes lines and moments to places that surprise us and seem to surprise them.
October 9, 2014
The material showcases the lead actors' strengths. Downey's is hyper-verbal glibness with a black sheep's injured sadness in his eyes. Duvall's is grizzled authority undercut by the infirmities of age.
October 9, 2014
Billed as a heavyweight championship bout, The Judge is more a middle-of-the-card time-passer.
October 9, 2014
Any references you can think of in an estranged father-son drama are present here, and they aren't presented with any particular spark of imagination. Luckily for Dobkin, Downey and Duvall are able to provide some.
October 9, 2014
You wish it were better. But "The Judge," eventually, wears its viewer down, despite the best efforts of an irresistible cast.
October 8, 2014
Downey does his doe-eyed best to make you play along, and the writing picks up a bit about halfway through. But it's just not worth the 140 minutes.
October 8, 2014
It's well-acted, with some occasional moments of clever dialogue, but the story is plodding, predictable and tension-free.
October 8, 2014
Essentially, this is Tony Stark in the courtroom. But Robert Downey Jr.'s gift for loquacious gymnastics is so impressive that he makes his staid legal drama come to life.
Top Critic
October 8, 2014
Equal parts courtroom drama, legal thriller and family saga, it's also a synchronized duet for two terrific actors at the top of their craft that left me stunned.
October 8, 2014
If "The Judge" proves anything, it's that talented, likable actors like Downey, Duvall, D'Onofrio and Farmiga can keep a mediocre movie humming.
October 7, 2014
Do we really need to see Robert Duvall playing a withered grouch for the millionth time?
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