Law Abiding Citizen

Law Abiding Citizen Image
Metascore
34

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 26 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 270 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: Clyde Shelton is an upstanding family man whose wife and daughter are brutally murdered during a home invasion. When the killers are caught, Nick Rice, a hotshot young Philadelphia prosecutor, is assigned to the case. Over his objections, Nick is forced by his boss to offer one of theClyde Shelton is an upstanding family man whose wife and daughter are brutally murdered during a home invasion. When the killers are caught, Nick Rice, a hotshot young Philadelphia prosecutor, is assigned to the case. Over his objections, Nick is forced by his boss to offer one of the suspects a light sentence in exchange for testifying against his accomplice. Fast forward ten years. The man who got away with murder is found dead and Clyde Shelton coolly admits his guilt. Then he issues a warning to Nick: Either fix the flawed justice system that failed his family, or key players in the trial will die. Soon Shelton follows through on his threats, orchestrating from his jail cell a string of spectacularly diabolical assassinations that can be neither predicted nor prevented. Philadelphia is gripped with fear as Shelton's high-profile targets are slain one after another and the authorities are powerless to halt his reign of terror. Only Nick can stop the killing, and to do so he must outwit this brilliant sociopath in a harrowing contest of wills in which even the smallest misstep means death. With his own family now in Shelton's crosshairs, Nick finds himself in a desperate race against time facing a deadly adversary who seems always to be one step ahead. (Overture Films) Expand

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 26
  2. Negative: 12 out of 26
  1. 75
    One of those movies you like more at the time than in retrospect.
  2. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    60
    True torture-porn aficionados will be disappointed, as editor Tariq Anwar cuts away right before blade meets flesh -- a move that feels a tad, well, gutless under the circumstances. But elsewhere, "Citizen" proves startlingly graphic, even by R-rated standards.
  3. 50
    The biggest problem with Law Abiding Citizen, however, is that the plot is just plain dumb.
  4. Reviewed by: Angie Errigo
    40
    Relentlessly ugly, preposterous and hackneyed of dialogue: guilty on all counts. It will do well, then.
  5. 30
    A movie devoted to baroque revenge would be, on its own terms, acceptable; what makes Law Abiding Citizen so risible is its humorless conviction that it's got Big Ideas at its core.
  6. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    30
    Butler has the showier part, but his impersonation of the tragic hero is undercut by his weird resemblance to Soupy Sales. You start hoping that Shelton will kill somebody with a custard (or puffer-fish) pie to the face.
  7. 25
    At last, the missing link be tween "Phantom of the Opera" and "Saw." Welcome to the gonzo revenge saga Law Abiding Citizen.

See all 26 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 52 out of 98
  2. Negative: 21 out of 98
  1. Dec 30, 2013
    10
    nice. and unexpected movie. Only the finish is expect-able and a bit disappointing.
    But in total a very nice movie, that does not follow the
    nice. and unexpected movie. Only the finish is expect-able and a bit disappointing.
    But in total a very nice movie, that does not follow the convention of Hollywood
    Expand
  2. paul
    Nov 27, 2009
    10
    No one listens to critics anyway at the end of the day, what the hell do they no? i just watched the movie and its awesome, great story, very No one listens to critics anyway at the end of the day, what the hell do they no? i just watched the movie and its awesome, great story, very smart, gerard butler bravo on some more great acting, great action. you cant go wrong with this film, as for the bad comments well people who obviously just like to be the negatives of life. Expand
  3. joeb.
    Apr 3, 2010
    9
    Gripping. A movie all law students should watch before becoming lawyers, even if it is unrealistic. This is what I would do to someone if Gripping. A movie all law students should watch before becoming lawyers, even if it is unrealistic. This is what I would do to someone if they murdered my family. Expand
  4. audreyg
    Feb 16, 2010
    7
    James H. is wrong if your wife and daughter were beaten to death you're saying you would only be mad for 1 to 2 years at the most. Your wrong
  5. DougG.
    Oct 23, 2009
    5
    Some shocking moments, but the movie is very flawed and the ending is horrible.
  6. TBone
    Oct 17, 2009
    4
    Great movie, terrible ending.
  7. RichardW.
    Oct 16, 2009
    0
    Yuch. What were a fine group actors thinking? Paycheck, maybe?

See all 98 User Reviews

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