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Encyclopedia > A Time to Kill (film)
A Time to Kill

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Joel Schumacher
Produced by William M. Elvin
John Grisham
Hunt Lowry
Arnon Milchan
Michael G. Nathanson
Written by John Grisham (novel A Time To Kill)
Akiva Goldsman (screenplay)
Starring Matthew McConaughey
Sandra Bullock
Samuel L. Jackson
Kevin Spacey
Music by Elliot Goldenthal
Distributed by Warner Bros.
Release date(s) 24 July 1996
Running time 149 min
Country Flag of the United States United States
Language English
IMDb profile

A Time to Kill is the name of a 1996 feature film adaptation of the 1989 legal thriller A Time to Kill by John Grisham, author of such novels as 'The Rain Maker', 'The King of Tourts' and his major work of art, 'The Street Lawyer'. The movie was a world wide success, making $108,766,007 in box office receipts, including a massive $19,628,271 for the first five days of its release to the public. Image File history File links Information. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 398 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (446 × 671 pixel, file size: 64 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) This image is of a poster, and the copyright for it is most likely owned by either the publisher or the creator of the work depicted. ... Joel Schumacher (born August 29, 1939) is an American film director, writer, and producer. ... Arnon Milchan (1945-) is movie producer and businessman. ... John Ray Grisham Jr. ... For the 1996 film, see A Time to Kill (film) A Time to Kill is the name of a legal suspense thriller authored by John Grisham in 1989. ... Akiva Goldsman (born July 7, 1962) is an American screenwriter, producer, and occasional actor in the motion picture industry. ... Matthew Baron McConaughey (born November 4, 1969) is an American actor. ... Sandra Annette Bullock (born July 26, 1964) is an American film actress. ... Samuel Leroy Jackson (born December 21, 1948) is an American actor. ... Kevin Spacey (born July 26, 1959) is a two time Academy Award winning American actor (film and stage) and director. ... Elliot Goldenthal, born on May 2, 1954, in Brooklyn, New York City, is an American composer of contemporary music and has written works for concert hall, theater, dance and film. ... Warner Bros. ... is the 205th day of the year (206th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1996 (MCMXCVI) was a leap year starting on Monday (link will display full 1996 Gregorian calendar). ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... The year 1996 in film involved some significant events. ... Film is a term that encompasses individual motion pictures, the field of film as an art form, and the motion picture industry. ... Year 1989 (MCMLXXXIX) was a common year starting on Sunday (link displays 1989 Gregorian calendar). ... The legal thriller is a sub-genre of the detective story in which the major characters are lawyers and their employees. ... For the 1996 film, see A Time to Kill (film) A Time to Kill is the name of a legal suspense thriller authored by John Grisham in 1989. ... John Ray Grisham Jr. ...


The movie was filmed in Canton, Mississippi; "Clanton", where the book is set, is a fictional location, as are most used in the works of John Grisham, but as with many, is based upon real crimes and real places. Canton is a city located in Madison County, Mississippi. ...

Contents

Plot summary

Two white racist Mississippi men (actors Nicky Katt and Doug Hutchison) are driving while drunk through the woods near Clanton, Mississippi during the summertime when they come across a 9-year-old black girl named Tonya (Rae'Ven Larrymore Kelly). The two drunk men proceed to violently rape Tonya then dump her in a nearby river for dead. Tonya survives to report the crime, and the county's black sheriff, Ozzie Walls (Charles S. Dutton), quickly pieces together who raped Tonya and finds the two perpetrators drinking lazily in a bar and bragging about their deed. He arrests them, and word spreads in the small, relatively quiet county about the brutal rape. This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Nicky Katt (born May 11, 1970 in South Dakota) is an American actor best known for his role on David E. Kelleys Fox drama Boston Public. ... Doug Hutchison is an American actor born 26 May 1960 in Dover, Delaware. ... Charles Dutton (born January 30, 1951 in Baltimore, Maryland) is an American actor/director. ... A county is generally a sub-unit of regional self-government within a sovereign jurisdiction. ...


Word eventually gets to Tonya's father, Carl Lee Hailey (Samuel L. Jackson). He goes to see Jake Brigance (Matthew McConaughey), an easygoing white lawyer in town whose bleeding heart often leaves him with clients who can't pay. Carl Lee asks Jake about the chances of the two rapists being acquitted, although their crime is obvious; Jake tells him similar things have happened in nearby counties—and hints at the area's deep-seated racism that still infests the land. In particular there was a case from the year before in the Delta where four white teenagers were acquitted of raping a black girl. Carl Lee calmly thanks Jake, then quietly leaves and acquires an M-16, goes to the county courthouse and waits patiently. When the two rapists are brought in for an arraignment, Carl Lee comes out of a closet suddenly and opens fire on the two men at close range—killing both—while also accidentally injuring Deputy Looney (Chris Cooper), who was hit when a bullet ricocheted off the stairs. Carl Lee drops his weapon and walks home before Sheriff Walls shows up and arrests him without incident. Samuel Leroy Jackson (born December 21, 1948) is an American actor. ... Matthew Baron McConaughey (born November 4, 1969) is an American actor. ... Racism is a belief or doctrine that differences in physical appearance between people (such as those upon which the concept of race is based) determine cultural or individual achievement, and usually involve the idea that ones own race is superior. ... The shared flood plain of the Yazoo and Mississippi Rivers The Mississippi Delta is the distinct northwest section of the state of Mississippi that lies between the Mississippi and Yazoo Rivers. ... Christopher W. Cooper (born July 9, 1951) is an Academy Award-winning American film actor. ...


Despite Carl Lee having very little money, his criminal defense is taken up by Jake. He intends to defend Carl Lee Hailey with a plea of not guilty by insanity, trying to convince the jurors that Carl Lee had a momentary lapse in sanity after the rape.


Jake and his wife, Carla (Ashley Judd), are at first excited about seeing Jake on the news so much during pre-trial happenings. This excitement quickly ends as the Ku Klux Klan begins to organize in the area and a brother of one of the dead rapists, Freddie Lee Cobb (Kiefer Sutherland), calls Brigance and his family with death threats. Making matters worse for Jake is that the district attorney, Rufus Buckley (Kevin Spacey), is out for blood (and the death penalty, more literally) and has plenty of resources at his disposal. The presiding judge, Judge Omar Noose (Patrick McGoohan), seems to be an old-timer white judge, as he's friends with Buckley and denies Jake a change of venue to a different county as to seek a more impartial jury. Ashley Judd (born Ashley Tyler Ciminella on April 19, 1968) is an American actress. ... Members of the second Ku Klux Klan at a rally during the 1920s. ... Kiefer William Frederick Dempsey George Rufus Sutherland (born December 21, 1966) is an Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning Canadian television and film actor, well known for his role of Jack Bauer on the series 24. ... Kevin Spacey (born July 26, 1959) is a two time Academy Award winning American actor (film and stage) and director. ... Capital punishment, or the death penalty, is the execution of a convicted criminal by the state as punishment for crimes known as capital crimes or capital offences. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


Jake seeks help for his defense team, unsuccessfully trying to draw in his friend and sleazy divorce lawyer Harry Rex Vonner (Oliver Platt), though Harry Rex will come aboard later. He seeks guidance from long-time liberal activist Lucien Wilbanks (Donald Sutherland), a great civil rights lawyer who was disbarred for hitting cops on a picket line; he now lives nearby and spends all his time drinking and tutoring Jake. The only full time help Jake has is his secretary, Ethel (Brenda Fricker), who's wary that Jake has taken on such a racially explosive case that mirrors no case he's ever handled before. For the record label, see Divorce Records. ... Oliver Platt as The West Wings Oliver Babish Oliver Platt (born January 12, 1960 in Windsor, Ontario, Canada) is a Canadian film and television actor. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Civil rights or positive rights are those legal rights retained by citizens and protected by the government. ... Disbarment is a penalty for lawyers. ... Picketing is a form of non-violent resistance in which people congregate outside a place of work or location where an event is taking place and attempt to dissuade others from going in (crossing the picket line). It has two main aims: to harm the business or activity by losing... Irish Oscar-winning actress, Brenda Fricker. ...


Jake is then caught off guard after being approached by Ellen Roark (Sandra Bullock), a fiery Massachusetts ACLU liberal whose father is a famous attorney to Hollywood stars and starlets. Jake agrees to let Ellen help with the case. Sandra Annette Bullock (born July 26, 1964) is an American film actress. ... Official language(s) English Capital Boston Largest city Boston Area  Ranked 44th  - Total 10,555 sq mi (27,360 km²)  - Width 183 miles (295 km)  - Length 113 miles (182 km)  - % water 13. ...


The trial begins amid much attention from the media and residents of the county. Blows are traded back and forth between the defense and prosecution as witnesses hit the stand. Freddie Lee Cobb uses a rifle and shoots at Jake outside the courtroom - but misses and hits a national guardsman, who is there to squelch any violence between the volatile groups keeping a close eye on the trial. The KKK, who has a member inside the sheriff's department, burns a cross on Jake's lawn, forcing Jake to send his wife and young daughter away while the trial continues. Look up trial in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


A group of black teenagers, outside the courthouse, angry at the KKK's presence and dealings, take their revenge by throwing a Molotov cocktail and hitting the KKK grand dragon, who appeared in a street parade to rile up racist supporters. As the grand dragon burns to death in the street, chaos ensues outside the courthouse as the police lose control of the crowd. Molotov cocktail is the generic name for a variety of crude incendiary weapons. ...


Jake's attraction to Roark grows, and they almost have an affair before Jake gains his wits and goes home - only to see that the KKK finally succeeded in burning down his house. Roark is pulled over on a rural road by the racist deputy with KKK members close behind. They beat Roark and leave her to die out in the wilderness. She is saved, though, by the informant Mickey Mouse, whose identity is revealed as one of the Klansmen working with Cobb. The next morning, Jake sits on the still-smoking steps of his house and meets with Harry Rex, who says it's time to listen to everyone else around him and quit the case. Jake refuses, saying his resolve is as strong as ever, and to quit now would mean all he's lost is for nothing.


When the jury secretly discusses the case in a restaurant (against the judge's instructions), all but one are leaning toward a guilty verdict, and Carl Lee's fate looks sealed. Jake goes to see Roark in a hospital and feels terrible for her. He is then comforted by his wife, who has returned. Out of options, Jake goes to see Carl Lee in his jail cell and Carl Lee tells him how to turn the jury in their favor. Toms Restaurant, a restaurant in New York made familiar by Suzanne Vega and the television sitcom Seinfeld A restaurant is an establishment that serves prepared food and beverages to order, to be consumed on the premises. ... Guilty is also the name of: A number of songs: Guilty, a 1931 song by Richard Whiting, Harry Akst, and Gus Kahn, popularized by Johnny Desmond and later Margaret Whiting. ... In law, a verdict indicates the judgment of a case before a court of law. ... Look up fate, Fates in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ...


The courthouse is packed to see the attorneys' closing arguments. Jake tells the jury to close their eyes and listen to a story. He describes, in slow and painful detail, the rape of a young 9-year-old girl—mirroring Tonya's rape. At the end of the story, as courtroom listeners and jury members alike are moved, he tells the jury members to think about the story some more—but imagine the victim was white. That's where the speech ends. Hours later, after deliberation, a young black boy runs out of the courthouse and screams "He's innocent!" Jubilation ensues amongst hundreds of black supporters outside. Sheriff Ozzie Walls arrests Freddie Lee as well as his racist deputy.


The movie ends with Jake taking his wife and daughter to a family cookout at Carl Lee's house. Carl Lee is surprised by their appearance, but understands it's to show that the two really are friends, not just distant acquaintances, as Carl Lee had once said.


Cast & Crew

Matthew Baron McConaughey (born November 4, 1969) is an American actor. ... Sandra Annette Bullock (born July 26, 1964) is an American film actress. ... Samuel Leroy Jackson (born December 21, 1948) is an American actor. ... Kevin Spacey (born July 26, 1959) is a two time Academy Award winning American actor (film and stage) and director. ... Ashley Judd (born Ashley Tyler Ciminella on April 19, 1968) is an American actress. ... Charles Dutton (born January 30, 1951 in Baltimore, Maryland) is an American actor/director. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Kiefer William Frederick Dempsey George Rufus Sutherland (born December 21, 1966) is an Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning Canadian television and film actor, well known for his role of Jack Bauer on the series 24. ... Members of the second Ku Klux Klan at a rally during the 1920s. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Oliver Platt as The West Wings Oliver Babish Oliver Platt (born January 12, 1960 in Windsor, Ontario, Canada) is a Canadian film and television actor. ... Irish Oscar-winning actress, Brenda Fricker. ... Akiva Goldsman (born July 7, 1962) is an American screenwriter, producer, and occasional actor in the motion picture industry. ... Joel Schumacher (born August 29, 1939) is an American film director, writer, and producer. ... Elliot Goldenthal, born on May 2, 1954, in Brooklyn, New York City, is an American composer of contemporary music and has written works for concert hall, theater, dance and film. ... Elliot Goldenthal scored the movie A Time to Kill in 1996, its emotional, sweeping themes can, given the subject matter of thew film, at times be a tad melodramatic but Goldenthals singular vision ensures that it is never boring or dull. ...

Trivia

  • The film takes place in Canton, Mississippi, rather than the fictional "Clanton" of the novel.
  • Paul Newman was offered the part of Lucien Wilbanks, but declined since he doesn't like being in films with violence. (Yet he starred in Slapshot, a very Violent Hockey movie. And is seen fighting in many scenes.) Donald Sutherland was then cast as the hard drinking, retired law school professor and unofficial father figure to Jake Brigance.
  • Kiefer Sutherland and father Donald Sutherland appear together in the movie. Kiefer and Sandra Bullock were dating at the time.
  • John Grisham has worked with director Joel Schumacher before on the film adaptation of The Client with Susan Sarandon and Tommy Lee Jones. While only his book was the basis for his involvement with that film, Grisham took an active role in this film's production as a producer. The reason, as Grisham explained it, was that A Time to Kill was his first book and the favorite one out of all of his works, and he wanted to see its adaptation done to his standards.
  • There were several names being mentioned for the part of Jake Brigance before it went to Matthew McConaughey such as Val Kilmer, John Cusack, Robert Downey Jr., Aidan Quinn and Brad Pitt. Woody Harrelson had lobbied for the part and Kevin Costner was close to being cast, but Grisham axed Costner since the actor wanted complete control of the project. McConaughey was originally going to play Freddie Lee Cobb, but put his hat in the ring by speaking to Joel Schumacher and convincing him to let him audition. Schumacher videotaped the audition and decided that McConaughey was right for the part. He then approached Grisham and showed him the audition, which sold Grisham on casting him. Donald Sutherland's son Kiefer Sutherland was then cast as the villain.
  • Bruce Dern was the original choice for the role of Judge Omar Noose. However, Patrick McGoohan was cast when he proved unavailable.
  • Samuel L. Jackson's line of "Yes, they deserved to die, and I hope they burn in Hell!" from the movie was used repeatedly in the ads and trailers, and has become a well known line by Jackson. He used it once during a promotional interview at the San Diego Comic Convention for Snakes on a Plane, and Dave Chappelle used the line to close out his "Samuel L. Jackson Beer" skit. Dave Chappelle also used the line in the "Star Wars Jedi Scandal" skit, after being asked if he believes the Jedi knights should die for sexually assaulting Jedi padawan he replies "Yes they deserved to die and I hope they burn in hell".
  • Most of John Grisham's books take place in Louisiana, but this book takes place in Clanton, Mississippi. It shows references to the book The Summons. It has such similarities as Claude's diner, Harry Rex Vonner, and the same town name. Grisham also uses Clanton in the books, The Last Juror, and The Chamber.

Paul Leonard Newman (born January 26, 1925) is an Academy Award, Golden Globe, Cannes Award, and Emmy Award-winning American actor and film director. ... A player takes a shot at the net in a game between Frölunda HCs and Färjestads BKs junior teams A slap shot in ice hockey is the hardest shot. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Kiefer William Frederick Dempsey George Rufus Sutherland (born December 21, 1966) is an Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning Canadian television and film actor, well known for his role of Jack Bauer on the series 24. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Sandra Annette Bullock (born July 26, 1964) is an American film actress. ... John Ray Grisham Jr. ... Joel Schumacher (born August 29, 1939) is an American film director, writer, and producer. ... The Client movie poster The Client (1994) is a legal thriller written by American author John Grisham, set in Memphis, Tennessee. ... Susan Sarandon (born October 4, 1946) is an Academy Award-winning American actress. ... For the musician, see Tommy Lee. ... Matthew Baron McConaughey (born November 4, 1969) is an American actor. ... Val Edward Kilmer[1] (born December 31, 1959) is an American actor. ... John Paul Cusack (born June 28, 1966) is an American film actor and writer. ... Robert John Downey Jr. ... Aidan Quinn (born March 8, 1959 Rockford, Illinois, USA) is an Irish-American actor. ... William Bradley Brad Pitt(born December 18, 1963) is an American actor and film producer. ... Woodrow Woody Tracy Harrelson (born July 23, 1961) is an American Emmy Award winning and Academy Award nominated actor. ... Kevin Michael Costner (born January 18, 1955) is a two-time Academy Award-winning American film actor and director who has often produced his own films. ... Joel Schumacher (born August 29, 1939) is an American film director, writer, and producer. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Kiefer William Frederick Dempsey George Rufus Sutherland (born December 21, 1966) is an Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning Canadian television and film actor, well known for his role of Jack Bauer on the series 24. ... Bruce MacLeish Dern (born June 4, 1936) is an Academy Award-nominated American screen actor. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Comic-Con International, commonly known as Comic-Con or the San Diego Comic-Con, is an annual multigenre fan convention founded as the Golden State Comic Book Convention and later the San Diego Comic Book Convention in 1970 by Shel Dorf and a group of San Diegans. ... Snakes on a Plane is a high concept,[1] horror-thriller feature film[2] starring Samuel L. Jackson. ... David Khari Webber Chappelle (born August 24, 1973) is an American stand-up comedian, satirist and actor. ... John Ray Grisham Jr. ... Official language(s) de jure: none de facto: English & French Capital Baton Rouge Largest city New Orleans [1] Area  Ranked 31st  - Total 51,885 sq mi (134,382 km²)  - Width 130 miles (210 km)  - Length 379 miles (610 km)  - % water 16  - Latitude 29°N to 33°N  - Longitude 89°W... The Summons is a legal thriller novel written in 2000 by noted American author John Grisham. ... Cover of audio book of The Last Juror The Last Juror is a novel by John Grisham first published in Doubleday on February 3rd 2004. ... The Chamber (1994) is a legal/suspense novel by noted American author John Grisham. ...

See also

This article is about pedophilia/paedophilia in movies/films. ...

External links


 
 

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