Law in Popular Culture

The 25 greatest legal movies

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Law at the Movies

Illustration by Matt Mahurin

Our all-time list of cinematic favorites

Ten years ago, the ABA Journal published a cover story called “The 25 Greatest Legal Movies,” a roster of top-notch legal-themed films drawn from a panel of judges that included lawyers, law professors and, yes, an actual judge.

We wanted to update the list this year and decided to broaden the scope to consider films that tell stories outside the typical courtroom drama—films that examine how the legal system intersects with our lives in different ways.

Once again, we’ve asked a panel to weigh in and recommend their favorite legal-themed films, including those released in the decade since our last top-25 list. The judges voted for many of the classics from our 2008 list, along with some newer films we hope will get you thinking about the reach of the law in new ways.

 

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The 25 Greatest Legal Movies: Expanding the Boundaries

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