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Popular Legal Movies

In light of the Oscars this past Sunday, movies are a great way to learn about topics, and gain ideas, and knowledge about an abundance of things that can happen in real life. Legal movies are especially good at this because the movies have different messages they want to convey to their audience about legal issues. Here is a list of some of popular movies about legal issues that you may want to check out, if you haven’t already:


To Kill A Mockingbird (1962) is both a popular novel and movie, written by Harper Lee. It is also regarded as the best legal movie of all time. Gregory Peck plays Atticus Finch, a small town lawyer who defends an African-American man during a time of high racism in the South. The courage the character shows has been known to inspire young aspiring lawyers for decades.

Julia Roberts plays Erin Brockovich (2000), a sassy, real-life paralegal and single mother. She gets involved in investigating suspicious real estate, and finds the illegal dumping of toxic hexavalent chromium. This case turned out to be one of the largest class action law suits in United States history. The film also looks at the discrimination women faced in the legal world. In the end, this movie is inspiring for women planning to pursue law degrees, and those interested in protecting the environment.

Miracle on 34th Street (1947) is a classic movie that make people rethink if they really do believe in Santa Claus. John Payne plays a young lawyer who takes on a tough client to represent, Kris Kringle (Edmund Gewnn), who claims to be the real Santa. This movie won 3 Oscars, and was ranked 9th at the American Film Institute’s “Most Influential Films of All Time”.

12 Angry Men (1957) is also a classic legal movie that portrays the importance of the jury and justice. This movie is about how one juror tries to convince 11 other jurors to choose the right verdict. 12 Angry Men is a great display of how important it is to ensure jurors know they should stay true to their word, and not let other people try to sway or bully others into changing their views.

Another good legal movie is Anatomy of Murder (1959). The defendant of a murder trial claims to have been temporarily insane, but is this true? This movie analyzes the legal process by examining how both sides of a trial use different strategies to attain the desired verdict. In addition to looking at the process of a trial, it also touches on ethical issues that can arise during a major court case.

There are many more legal movies that have been made over the years that discuss an array of legal issues that may come up. There are great courtroom scenes, interesting topics, and talented actors and actresses.

Do you have legal movie recommendations? What are your favorite movies about law?

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