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Dan the Man's Movie Reviews

All my aimless thoughts, ideas, and ramblings, all packed into one site!

A Few Good Men (1992)


A movie that is always remembered for that one famous line.

When cocky military lawyer Lt. Daniel Kaffee (Tom Cruise) and his co-counsel, Lt. Cmdr. JoAnne Galloway (Demi Moore), are assigned to a murder case, they uncover a hazing ritual that could implicate high-ranking officials such as shady Col. Nathan Jessep (Jack Nicholson).

When it comes down to it, this a powerhouse of a film. The writing, acting, plot, and directing has got it all, and let’s just say even after 18 years, it stills stands the test of time.

My main love of this movie comes from it’s incredible writing job from the always brilliant, Aaron Sorkin. There is a lot of detail that goes into this story, and not for a second do you get confused by what’s going on, and what is to come. There is plenty of hard talk going throughout this film, and that’s what kept me watching, is how I was just compelled by everything that was said, and happened in this film. The main reason it’s so compelling is because you see just how people act in a certain way, especially when it comes to making decisions that have major consequences.

The problem is that the film is quite a predictable, and run-of-the-mill courtroom drama, with a bit more than others. It plays off as a conventional story, and although it’s interesting, as you keep on watching, you can’t help but think, you have seen this before.

However, the acting here is just superb, with almost every star, basically having their work cut out for them. Tom Cruise, plays his usual cocky character, but with a lot more of a likability this time, and you don’t hate him as much, you start to cheer him on. Demi Moore, and Kevin Pollak, are both Cruise’s little helpers, and do well, creating tow characters that we enjoy watching especially on the screen with Cruise. Although it may seem more like an extended cameo, Jack Nicholson’s part is honestly one of his most well-acted. He starts off as a total dick, and every time he’s on screen you can just feel the tension, and the anger from this dude, and your just getting chills with every little thing he says. However, by the end, and mainly because of that explosive ending, you realize that there’s so much more to his character, and although you may not agree with his claims,you still understand. Those last 20 minutes between Cruise and Nicholson, are just so perfectly acted, and works so well with this whole movie, and when it’s all over, your just amazed at what you just saw. There are of course other supporting acts that are notable such as Kiefer Sutherland, Kevin Bacon, and the always reliable J.T. Walsh. All of the stars in this movie, each give their 100% efforts, and you can tell, which makes this film even better.

Probably the other great thing about this movie is that it can also be used as a great moral tale, or discussion. The whole movie you think got everything figured out, until those last 20 minutes come up, and you just don’t know what to think about it all. I have seen this about 3 times, and let me just say I still don’t know what was right, and what was wrong, but that’s the best thing about this film.

Consensus: A Few Good Men may be your conventional story, it all gets over-shadowed by it’s great script, powerful acting from the whole cast, and those last 20 minutes that will just take you back so much.

8.5/10=Matinee!!!

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5 responses to “A Few Good Men (1992)

  1. Sebastian November 16, 2010 at 6:31 am

    Just letting you know, as you are a regular commenter on my site, I changed the URL, and the old one does not redirect. I don’t know how to make it so it does, and I fear it’s too late. So, here’s the URL. If you could find it in yourself to pass it along to others, that would be great. I really, really, REALLY, don’t want to lose all the readers I’ve gotten over the past year. Thanks.

    http://fromthesupermassive.blogspot.com/

  2. Rodney November 16, 2010 at 8:44 am

    Great review Dan, although I don’t entirely share your thoughts on Demi Moore’s performance here. Of all the cast, I think she’s the weakest link, with a spotty portrayal of a woman I didn’t find convincing. Cruise, Nicholson, Pollack, Bacon and Sutherland are terrific as always, and only having watched this film a week or so again on the TV, I have to say that for the short time he’s actually in the film, Nicholson owns this movie. He pretty much bitch-slaps the rest of the cast into oblivion with his performance here.
    Ahh, you know, you can’t handle the truth!!!
    Sorry, had to mention it!

  3. Jen November 18, 2010 at 9:11 pm

    I’m amazed that there are still people that don’t know this movie. I think it’s beautfully acted throughout, although I have to admit that Ms Moore does stumble once or twice with Mr Sorkin’s extended dialogue.

    Stand out character for me though is actually Kevin Bacon. “I represent the government of the United States without passion or prejudice and my client has a case!” I think he delivers that line perfectly.

    Liked your review. Thanks for commenting on my blog.

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