High Crimes [2002]

A welcomed reunion of Kiss the Girls costars Ashley Judd and Morgan Freeman makes High Crimes a worthwhile thriller with vivid, likable characters. Efficiently directed by Carl Franklin, this military mystery doesn't have the unpredictable edginess of Franklin's Devil in a Blue Dress, but its twisting plot is sure to hold anyone's attention. Judd plays a successful, happily married lawyer whose husband (Jim Caviezel) is accused of killing innocent citizens during his military service in El Salvador some 13 years earlier. A cover-up implicates a powerful Brigadier General (Bruce Davison), but when Judd hires a maverick attorney (Freeman), Judd is caught in a potentially lethal trap of threats and deception. Attentive viewers will stay ahead of the action, and alleged villains are posed as obvious decoys. Still, Judd and Freeman have an appealing rapport (shared with Amanda Peet, playing Judd's vivacious sister), and Freeman's character flaws add worldly spice to yet another rich performance. --Jeff Shannon

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