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John Grisham's The Rainmaker
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Customer Reviews:

  • One of the year's best. A definite purchase!
    This is really the only Grisham adaptation that I have absolutely loved. A Time to Kill was ok but not exceptional.

    It's a classic David vs. Goliath story and on the surface might appear as more of the same old thing. If the movie is predictable (and i'm not saying that it is) you (the viewer) really won't care because Coppola's direction, the script, and the great performances transform it into a movie with tremendous heart, drama, humor, and even a little action and suspense.

    I have yet to see a Matt Damon film that I haven't liked. For me he's an actor whose work I will go to see without any knowledge about the film other than his presence in it. (Check out Rounders for a film of similar quality).

    Danny Devito is hilarious (as always).

    A must see film....more info

  • Great movie
    This movie was great. It was interesting, had a great plot and Matt Damon was fabulous in it. I think this is going to turn into an alltime favorite....more info
  • Not at all what was expected


    I am sorry to go against the tide, but had I not read the book, I would have nothing at all good to say about this movie, in this format. It was choppy, disoriented, and failed to develop any of the plot points. It is like a series of promos, loosely glued together, without even a good time line to enable a viewer to determine what has occurred. Since my spouse watched it with me, and has never read the book, we are both convinced that we saw this movie before, and that it was longer, with much more detail. In this version, Birdie and Donnie could have phoned in their parts, as could Ms. Black. Very little in the way of part development for anyone except Danny DeVito, and even that was abridged. Am I wrong? is there not another version out there somewhere?

    ...more info
  • Francis Ford Coppola Does Justice to the Grisham Novel
    Upon renting "The Rainmaker", I had numerous doubts concerning if I would enjoy the film. I new Mr. Damon had strong acting talents that will lead him many more years, but the film looked, well, boring. I had never taken the time to read the novel, but I was well aware of its success.During the film, I could not take my eyes off the screen. "The Rainmaker" is an excellent film and casted superbly. Danny Devito did a wonderful job as Mr. Damon's partner who just can't pass the Bar Exam. After watching the movie you can't imagine who else would have played his part. It is an extremely gratifying movie that is both creative and heart-aching. I recommend "The Rainmaker" as one of the strongest films of 1997....more info
  • "And I could probably give it to them, too."
    This is one of my least favorite Grisham novels. It's short on plot and a little heavy-handed, and Grisham is not very good with characters. Coppola, however, is wonderful with characters, and Matt Damon's Rudy Baylor is one of the finest performances he's ever given. Damon, DeVito, Danes, and Voight all make this an amazing film when it could very easily have been another Pelican Brief. All the actors are very obviously having fun in their parts. This movie is heartwarming, funny, and kind, and Damon's gentle voice-over perfectly underscores the genuine feeling that Coppola so deftly engenders. It's fascinating to watch Damon work here - he plays a soft-spoken Tennessee lawyer with as much assurance as he does a brash Boston mathematician in Good Will Hunting. Go watch this one. You'll like it....more info
  • A movie for the intelligent viewer.
    This was a very good film. It's subtle humor is woven neatly with a heroic story of a lawyer (Damon) trying his first case. He puts a huge insurance company out of business by uncovering there scams. It's hard to put into words the strength of the images in this film....more info
  • Great movie
    This is another of Grisham's great books which translates to a very good movie. It will seem like a b-grade movie at times because of the locations and scenes, but the moral and ethical plot will keep you rivited and wondering what will happen next. One of Damon's best works when he is just a youngster. A modern David and Goliath story with a happy ending...more info
  • sappy tear jerker plot fails to convince
    A 22 year old man is denied the Cadillac of medical care, a bone transplant, after purchasing the Gremlin of medical insurance from a small company. The movie attempts to arouse sympathy, but provides a jaundiced view of reality. The fact is the patient would still have been eligible for all the medical care the safety net of Medicaid and Medicare provide, plus the basics his low quality insurance would have provided. This includes visiting nurses, pain management, etc. We are supposed to believe an employee of the insurance company wrote a letter to the family calling them, "STUPID, STUPID, STUPID". I worked in the insurance business and anyone who did that would be FIRED. Thus, the plot of this film insulted my intelligence. If the patient had sound basis for a lawsuit an established attorney would have taken the case. Instead he winds up represented by a fresh law school grad. I resent being manipulated to believe our flawed medical and insurance systems are even worse than they really are. You will not enjoy this movie, unless you are very gullible. It is also depressing and fails to offer good background music, scenery, or any comic relief. Even the romantic interest is disgusting presenting a battered woman who is married. ...more info
  • excellent movie
    excellent storyline with excellent acting from matt damon. One of the best movies i have ever seen....more info
  • underrated and understated
    This understated version of the Grisham novel of the same name is a gem. Matt Damon shines and Danny Devito is perfectly cast as the "paralawyer". Very well done, perhaps the best of the Grisham movies....more info
  • WOW!!!one of Grisham's best,beautifully written and acted.
    THE RAINMAKER... one of the many movie's I've seen,and one of the best,I'm now reading the book,talk about a page turner!MATT DAMON & DANNY DEVITO,who both happen to be 2 of the best actors in hollywood,both gave this movie all they got (simply the best,better then all the rest!!!)any way,for those people who have never seen THE RAINMAKER,well you have to,other great movies, based upon John Grisham's books are THE CHAMBER,also excellent acting(Chris O'Donnel and one of the best actors of all time Gene Hackman) and last but not least THE FIRM,(Rosie O'Donnel's crush TOM CRUISE,who does wonders acting in this movie.)...more info
  • Great Storytelling
    I've always really enjoyed this film, even if it is blatantly manipulative in its political correctness preaching. It's just great storytelling, regardless.

    The film features a deep cast and one that puts on a great displaying acting, from the lead "good guy" Matt Damon to the lead "bad guy" Jon Voight to all the performers somewhere in the middle, headed by ambulance chaser Danny DeVito.

    It's not a believable story at all - a rookie lawyer fresh out of school outsmarting a team of proved veterans with big money backing them - but it makes for a good story. Everyone likes to root for David against Goliath, which is what this turns out to be. Just one example, by the way, of the political correctness in here: the kid lawyer's hopes of a fair trial only become reality after the older, obviously-corrupt white judge suddenly dies and is replaced by Harvard- educated black judge (Danny Glover, of all people). Now, as it's quickly demonstrated in the film, a man of Liberal sensibilities will be bring fairness and justice to this case!

    The story is not flattering to lawyers, but it's not all-condemning either. It's pretty balanced in that regard. There's not much profanity, either. Damon does very well in this choice role and once again demonstrates why he was considered one of the best in the crop of today's younger actors back in this mid-to-late `90s period.

    It helps that he portrays an extremely likable character, who not only sticks up for a poor, neglected family against a big, wealthy corporation but rescues a sweet woman (Clarie Danes) from her physically-abusive husband at the same time! Wow, he does it all: SuperLawyer!

    Danes is very appealing as the battered wife who winds up being romanced by Damon. That part of the film is not distracting, but a nice break from the legalese of the main story. It helps make the movie even more involving. There is very little "action" in here but not much is needed to keep one's attention since it is so entertaining for the full 2-plus hours.
    ...more info
  • The best Grisham adaption since "The Firm" and "The Client"!
    John Grisham's "The Rainmaker" is a film that is nothing short of astonishing or powerful. This is director Francis Ford Coppola's best film since "Apocalypse Now" and "The Godfather" series. And to me, "The Rainmaker" is more of a powerful drama than it is a thinking person's film alongside the other Grisham adaptions: "The Firm", "The Pelican Brief", "The Client", "A Time to Kill", and "The Chamber". "The Rainmaker" focuses on a Memphis law student named Ruby Baylor (Matt Damon in one of his finest performances) who is reluctantly hired by a shady lawyer named Bruiser Stone (Mickey Rourke) at a sleazy practice. Rudy is partnered up with Deck Schifflet (Danny DeVito in another fine performance), a seasoned "para-lawyer" who failed the Bar Exam 6 times and specializes in it. Deck teaches Rudy the tricks of the trade is Rudy is to move on at all. During the film, Rudy takes on the biggest case of his career: the case of Great Benefit, a life insurance company that has denied a family's claim 8 times and stating in the letter: "You must be stupid, stupid, stupid." That family is the Black family (led by Mary Kay Place, "The Big Chill"). Their son, Donny Ray, is diagnosed with leukemia. The company just sat back and watched Donny Ray's life slip away, and basically, Rudy just couldn't take it anymore. As he goes up against the company's lawyers (including Jon Voight), Rudy also comes to the aid of Kelly Riker (Claire Danes), a young woman who has been abused by her husband far too many times. And the movie goes on from there. Basically, "The Rainmaker" has the same spirit as any other courtroom drama or as any other Grisham novel. A lot of the credit goes to Matt Damon, Danny DeVito, Claire Danes, Jon Voight, Mary Kay Place, Virginia Madsen, Mickey Rourke, Dean Stockwell, and two special appearances by Danny Glover and Randy Travis for their excellent performances. "The Rainmaker" is a Grisham film that is not to be missed at all, whether it is on DVD or video....more info
  • An Average Movie
    Although the premise was of interest, the movie did not deliver. There were some memorable quotes, though....more info
  • Full Screen vs. Wide Screen
    If you view movies on a Wide Screen television 16:9 you should order movies in Full Screen aspect ratio. If you watch a Wide Screen enhanced dvd you generally get the Black Bars effect which I find detracts from the Wide Screen experience. This disc was only available in the Wide Screen format and the movie was too good not to buy even with the Black Bars....more info
  • This is one of John Grishams more interesting movies.
    Even though this is dealing with legal stuff, John Grisham seems to find a way to make it interesting. I think Matt Damon was a good choice to play the part as the rookie lawyer. I also found it funny how Danny Devito flunked the bar exam seven times, and Matt passed it on his first try, and Matt has Danny helping him. Matt was sworn in by a fool and vouched for by scoundrel. The part about the boy's testimony is touching. I would recomend this movie to anyone who likes good movies or is fan of John Grisham....more info
  • yes it is anamorphic
    It is compared to the old release on DVDBeaver and it definitely IS 16X9 enhanced (anamorphic)....more info
  • Pleased with prompt service.
    I was very happy with the fast delivery and excellent condition of the VHS

    Rainmaker....more info
  • The Rainmaker....the Irony of Irony
    I rented John Grisham's The Rainmaker and i have to say, i enjoyed the movie.

    from the very beginning to the end, it was a very thoughtful, well crafted, well acted out movie with a heck of a story line and full of IRONY.

    The very title, The Rainmaker almost implies to play God, to dictate circumstances so to speak.

    Rudy Baylor (Matt Damon) is a fresh out of law school attorney who sets the tone of his character at the very beginning of the movie when he says that he bartended to go to law school and how unlike other attorneys, he didn't have anything available after finishing law school. No law firms waiting, nothing. He had to look for a job.

    Danny DeVito's character is a paralawyer, he finished law school but can't pass the bar exam (6 times failed). He works for a law firm owned by Bruiser Stone (Mickey Rourke) in Memphis, who in turn, hires Rudy to basically be an ambulance chasing attorney.

    DeVito finds out that the law firm they work for is about to get raided by the Government, so he and Damon start their own law firm and quickly start working on the case of Donny, a young 20 something year old kid who is dying of leukemia. He was denied a bone marrow transplant 8 times by the insurance company Great Benefit.

    Rudy sues on behalf of Donny's mother and the court action between a rookie fresh out of law school lawyer-just passed the bar exam, and his first ever case and Jon Voit, an experienced trial lawyer is very interesting.

    It's Big Coporation vs the little man.

    Along the way, Rudy has help from Devito, who is constantly digging up new information, presenting case history to back a ruling, and finding the secretary of one of Great Benefit's executives who claim she "resigned" and wasn't fired and who can also help expose the truth.

    I say The Rainmaker has a double meaning because even though Rudy had the truth on his side, he did do some fancy lawyer tricks with the help of DeVito's character. So they burn the insurance giant and get a ruling of almost $50 million in damages, but...as the title of the movie goes, Great Benefit in turn files for bankruptcy and in the end, nobody really wins.

    Donny is gone, Rudy has no income because of the bankruptcy, DeVito leaves his partnership with Rudy, and in the end, Great Benefit lost, won, and then lost again by losing the suit, winning the bankruptcy case, and then going out of business.

    it's a very interesting story nonetheless and as a fan of lawyer movies, it's a must see....more info
  • Great legal drama
    I've seen the Firm, I've seen A Time To Kill, and I've seen A Civil Action. This is better than all of them in terms of depicting a serious civil action law suit and a wide-eyed fresh out of law school lawyer.

    This movie was before Matt Damon became MATT DAMON and shows (along with Courage Under Fire) why he deserves the acclaim that he gets. He delivers a great subtle performance. His character is sincere, earnest, and eager to learn and seek justice, yet not the typical righteous caricature that movies often make lawyers (arrogant seekers of truth). The battered love interest story line is a bit unnecessary, but this movie is definately worth your time....more info

  • Something for everyone.
    In The Rainmaker, Matt Damon plays a first-time lawyer. He enters the popular, competitive profession with honorable intentions. His character, Rudy Bailer, says he entered the legal profession to become a respected defender of civil rights. Coincedentally, his father has a hatred of lawyers. Rudy confides in the viewer that he "didn't become a lawter to piss [his] father off, it just worked out that way." Rudy's first case gets him in over his head when his clients sue Great Benefit Insurance, Inc. because they denied a legitimate claim. His client's son, Billy Ray, has lukemia and the insurance company refused to pay their claim, hoping the insured wouldn't consult a lawter. The company is obviously in-the-wrong and their corruption comes out during the trial in the dramatic courtroom scenes. A bittersweet ending follows the case's final verdict, adding a nice twist to the plot. The movie was interesting and enjoyable to watch. It has a little something for everyone: suspense, humor, romance, and action. This movie can be recommended for the majority of movie-going audiences and most will leave satisfied....more info
  • Widescreen vs Full, ONE person's opinon!
    I absolutly love to watch movies in their intended format. Movies that are viewed the way they were shown at theaters, in WIDESCREEN(WS). It makes me cringe when someone talks about the differences between WS and fullscreen(FS) and doesn't even add one of the two main differences. That being when watching in FS, you are loosing around a third of the movie. The third comprising of the far left and right sides of the movie. I'll be honest, when watching a great movie in FS, one that envelops your senses, you won't be thinking about WS, but you should! With prices dropping on DVD's all the time, why would one want to buy a partial movie, when for the same price, you can get the whole "experiance"? And with prices also dropping on TV's, especially DLP's, the average household will own at least a 42" screen before to long. When watching a WS movie on a 42" screen, you are almost doubling to tripling your viewing pleasure compared to that of a 27" screen. This of course depends on the aspect ration and if the movie is Anamorphic, 16:9, enhanced for widescreen tv's. Got a phobia with the black bars, I understand. But, I guarantee, buy at least a 56"screen, add at least a 5.1 sound system(also dropping in price), and when watching a great WS movie with any kind of black bars, at night, you won't know they're there! One more thing. Think more than a 42" is too much for your living room. Take this test. Face and stand right up to the front of at least a 56" screen. Walk backwards till you're comfortable with watching the screen. Now, walking back up to the screen, count how many steps it takes to get back. You'll be suprised at how close you really are comfortable watching that larger screen. ...more info