A Time to Kill Poster

Release Date: July 24th, 1996

DVD Release Date: March 26th, 1997

R|2 hr 30 min

Plot Summary
Carl Lee Hailey (Samuel L. Jackson) is a heartbroken black father who avenges his daughter's brutal rape by shooting the bigoted men responsible for the crime as they are on their way to trial. He turns to Jake Brigance (Matthew McConaughey), an untested lawyer, to defend him. Brigance struggles to believe that he can get Hailey acquitted in this small, segregated Southern town, given Hailey's race and the deliberate nature of his crimes, but Carl has unshakable faith in him.

Cast: Sandra Bullock, Samuel L. Jackson, Matthew McConaughey, Kevin Spacey, Brenda Fricker, Oliver Platt, Charles S. Dutton, Ashley Judd

Director: Joel Schumacher

Genres: Drama

Production Co: Regency Enterprises

Ratings & Reviews

view all
  • Joel Schumacher, the director of "Falling Down," "The Client" and "Batman Forever," has a strong feel for this kind of glossy pop entertainment and a way of integrating social issues without sacrificing narrative drive. show more

  • A Time to Kill, based on the first novel by John Grisham, is a skillfully constructed morality play that pushes all the right buttons and arrives at all the right conclusions. show more

  • Then again, it's worth noting that this Hollywood production is actually saying something, rather than just churning out eye-popping special effects while relying on a regurgitated plot. show more

See all critic reviews on metacritic.com