New Documentary Takes Aim at Legal Profession

Weeks after the television debut of the documentary "Hot Coffee," a second film focusing on the legal profession has made its way to TV screens, this time with a much more critical view of lawyers’ role in the U.S. justice system.  The producers of "InJustice" describe the film as "a shockingly candid look-under-the-hood of the American legal machine." In reality, "InJustice" focuses on several instances of criminal conduct by lawyers in order to make the case for what the film’s producer describes as "what is wrong with the American justice system."

The film received major funding from the legal arm of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the same group that was profiled in "Hot Coffee" because of its tireless work to convince the public and policymakers that lawyers, judges and juries are all out of control, thereby justifying restrictions on courthouse access and forced limits on jury awards.  Interestingly, however, the two movies have not enjoyed similar receptions.  While "Hot Coffee" earned multiple awards and film festival selections and was picked up for HBO’s 2011 summer documentary series,"InJustice" so far has claimed no industry honors and appeared on the lesser-known Reelz network.

Does the lack of critical acclaim and apparently meager distribution of "Injustice" mean that senseless lawyer bashing is on the decline?  Let's hope so.   

Posted: 7/28/2011 3:35:49 PM by On the Merits Editor | with 0 comments

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Thanks for stopping by On the Merits, the first blog from the Texas Center for Legal Ethics. On the Merits will take a close look at significant legal stories with an eye toward addressing the legal myths and misconceptions that turn up in news stories, movies, TV programs, websites, anonymous emails and other forms of mass communications. Our goal at On the Merits is to provide readers with a thoughtful examination of what the media and others are saying about the legal profession and to apply the frequently-absent context of how the legal system actually works.

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