Unfortunately, I do not have any
particular favorite legal movie. But if I had
to choose, I’d choose the “trial” scene in
Animal House. It’s an excellent—although
facetious—example of the importance of
speaking from the heart … and it’s pretty
The Animal House “trial” scene contains
so much: establishment versus motley,
conformity versus unruliness, stiff versus
relaxed, dull versus fun, order versus chaos,
sham proceeding versus fairness. And it
reminds me of my fraternity days.
STEVE VOSSELLER / LAW OFFICE OF
STEVEN C. VOSSELLER; SAN DIEGO;
PERSONAL INJURY - GENERAL: PLAINTIFF,
PERSONAL INJURY - PRODUCTS: PLAINTIFF
I enjoy legal movies, and there are a lot
of very good ones dating way back: To Kill
a Mockingbird, for example, and recently A
Civil Action. But the one I enjoyed the most
is a comedy with Jim Carrey.
It’s about a lawyer who has a spell cast
on him where he cannot tell a lie. There are
hilarious courtroom scenes where he wants
to make an argument and he just can’t do
it. I laughed through the whole movie.
Strangely enough, out of all the great
legal movies that have been shown over
time, it’s the comedy that really won out
SANDRA J. BROWER / PARTNER, HIGGS
FLETCHER & MACK; SAN DIEGO; REAL
My Cousin Vinny.
I generally hate legal movies—especially
when they involve courtroom scenes. They
are so grossly unrealistic it ruins it for me.
My favorite actually has a lot of
courtroom scenes in it, [but it works]
because My Cousin Vinny is like a farce.
You’re able to suspend disbelief and just
laugh at this guy bumbling around in the
courtroom, and the judge becoming more
and more exasperated.
Another thing to take away from My
Cousin Vinny: If you are enthusiastic and
diligent and you really love being a lawyer,
and you’re proud of being a lawyer, that’s
90 percent of success. In a weird way, it’s
an uplifting take on the profession. He’s
a terrible, schlocky lawyer but he’s really
proud and happy to be a lawyer. And of
course he ends up winning because he
works hard and his heart’s in the right place.
That’s got to be good news for all of us.
DEAN T. KIRBY JR. / KIRBY & MCGUINN,
A P.C.; SAN DIEGO; CREDITOR DEBTOR
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE LEGAL MOVIE? AS TOLD TO JESSICA TAM