Pacino Stokes the Fire in 'Devil's Advocate'

By Gire, Dann | Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), October 17, 1997 | Go to article overview

Pacino Stokes the Fire in 'Devil's Advocate'


Gire, Dann, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)


Byline: Dann Gire Daily Herald Film Critic

"The Devil's Advocate"

* * *

Written by Jonathan Lemkin and Tony Gilroy, based on the book by Andrew Neiderman. Produced by Arnon Milchan, Arnold Kopelson and Anne Kopelson. Directed by Taylor Hackford. A Warner Bros. release. Rated R (sexual situations, violence.) Running time: 138 minutes.

Cast:

   Kevin Lomax   Keanu Reeves
   John Milton      Al Pacino
   Mary Ann Lomax   Charlize Theron

With Craig T. Nelson, Jeffrey Jones, Judith Ivey and Connie Nielson.

Al Pacino as Satan?

Hooo-haaaaaah!

No, it gets better.

Al Pacino as Satan as John Milton, head of New York City's most powerful law firm.

Double Hoooo-haaaaah!

Rumor has it that Warner Bros. actually had to import scenery from five other film productions just so Pacino would have enough to chew on for this role.

"I'm a fan of humanity!" he screeches in his cavernous office as a massive mosaic of naked bodies on the wall magically comes to life and starts doing things we can't report in a family newspaper.

Yep, if Daniel Webster had run into this devil at the bar, he'd have a win-loss record like the Chicago Bears.

In "The Devil's Advocate," "Rosemary's Baby" meets "The Firm" while director Taylor Hackford buries his tongue so far into his cheek that he'll need to call an orthodontist just to speak.

This hyperbolic horror tale preys on every demonic cliche in the book of the darned. Crisp, poker-hot dialogue laden with hellish puns. Frenetic, forbidden sex. Savage sacrifices of staff members (think of it as downbelow-sizing). Loads of biblical quotations, just to give the wacky story a veneer of religious authenticity.

The hammy drama traces the rise of a young, promising Florida defense attorney named Kevin Lomax, played by buffed Keanu Reeves, who doesn't quite achieve that well-laundered Republican look favored by lawyers. …

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