Too old for Hamlet and too young for Lear--what's an ambitious actor to do? Play the Devil, of course. Jack Nicholson did it in The Witches of Eastwick; Robert De Niro did it in Angel Heart (as Louis Cyphre--get it?). In The Devil's Advocate Al Pacino takes his turn as the great Satan, and clearly relishes his chance to raise hell. He's a New York lawyer, of course, by the name of John Milton, who recruits a hotshot young Florida attorney (Keanu Reeves) to his firm and seduces him with tempting offers of power, sex, and money. Think of the story as a twist on John Grisham's The Firm, with the corporate evil made even more explicit. Reeves is wooden, and therefore doesn't seem to have much of a soul to lose, but he's really just our excuse to meet the devil. Pacino's the main attraction, gleefully showing off his--and the Antichrist's--chops at perpetrating menace and mayhem. The film was directed by Taylor Hackford (Against All Odds, Dolores Claiborne). --Jim Emerson
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