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CULTUREARTICLE

7 Courtroom Dramas to Stream This Weekend

Revisit your favorite courtroom dramas with these 7 movies currently available to stream.

In this weekend's big release, The Judge, a big city lawyer (Robert Downey, Jr.) returns to his hometown to defend his father, a local judge (Robert Duvall) and is forced to confront his ability as an attorney and a family man. Although very much about returning to his hometown and rehabilitating a splintered family, The Judge is mainly a throwback to the much-neglected courtroom drama subgenre.

In this list of movies currently available to stream, we revisit our favorite movies about true crime stories, sensational trials and tense judicial proceedings.

The Conspirator
Directed by Robert Redford
Watch on Amazon Prime

Robert Redford directs an impressive ensemble cast featuring Kevin Kline, Robin Wright, James McAvoy, Evan Rachel Wood, and many more in this post-Civil-War drama. McAvoy shines as an attorney defending a woman charged with conspiracy in the event of Abraham Lincoln's assasination. 

Twelve Angry Men
Directed by Sidney Lumet
Watch on Netflix

Twelve Angry Men  follows as a jury (of twelve) works through a decision to condemn or acquit their defendant. This cinematic adaptation preserves the tensions of the original teleplay by staging most of the film in the jury room. 

Lonely Hearts
Directed by Todd Robinson
Watch on Netflix

Starring Jared Leto, John Travolta, and Salma Hayek, Lonely Hearts is about the real-life "Lonely Hearts Killers" who found and killed rich, single women by taking out personal ads. This film recreates the aggressive search for the killers and the sensational trial that followed. 

Perfume: The Story of a Murderer
Directed by Tom Tykwer
Watch on Amazon Prime

From the director of Lola Rennt (Run Lola Run) is this feature film about a vicious murderer who takes his keen sense of smell to a murderous level. Ben Whishaw plays Jean-Baptiste,a perfumer in 18th century France who becomes obsessed with bottling the perfect scent. The movie opens with Jean-Baptiste on trial for a strange crime and the rest of the mystery unfolds via flashback during the courtoom proceedural. 

Devil's Knot
Directed by Atom Egoyan
Watch on Netflix

Another true story, Devil's Knot borrows from events that took place in West Memphis in which three teenagers stand trial for the murder of three local boys. Starring Reese Witherspoon as one of the boys' distressed mother and Colin Firth, the investigator, this movie tells the story of the small working class community and it's legal failures.

Unbowed
Directed by Ji-yeong Jeong
Watch on Netflix

This South Korean film is based on the true story of a math teacher who, frustrated with losing his case wrongful dismissal, fired a crossbow at his presiding judge. Faced now with another trial to defend his actions, the teacher hires a lawyer battling alcoholismm and the pair have to set aside their differences to win the case. 

The Onion Field
Directed by Harold Becker
Watch on Amazon Prime

A film from 1979, The Onion Field stars John Savage, James Woods, Franklyn Seales and Ted Danson as four men - two petty criminals and two police officers - who find themselves in a standoff in an onion field that results in one of the four's death. The rest of the film detangles these events through a high-profile trial. 

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