All rise: Denzel Washington to turn up awards season heat with ‘ROMAN J. ISRAEL, ESQ.’

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Preston Barta // Features Editor

After seeing Academy Award-winner Denzel Washington expertly portray a rather despicable man in FENCES, it’s going to be nice to see him in a role that goes down smooth and doesn’t send your skin crawling. Don’t get me wrong; FENCES was an incredible achievement in acting across the board. But I like the “my man” version of Denzel, and his new film, ROMAN J. ISRAEL, ESQ. seems to fit the bill.

Along with THREE BILLBOARDS IN EBBING, MISSOURI, movie titles are getting a little more daring these days. Written and directed by Tony Gilroy (NIGHTCRAWLER), ROMAN J. ISRAEL, ESQ. is “a dramatic thriller set in the underbelly of the overburdened Los Angeles criminal court system. Washington stars as a driven, idealistic defense attorney whose life is upended when a turbulent series of events challenge the activism that has defined his career. Colin Farrell co-stars as the ambitious, monied lawyer who recruits Roman to his firm.”

Check out the trailer below:

ROMAN J. ISRAEL, ESQ. arrives in theaters on November 3.

Synopsis provided by Sony Pictures.

About author

Preston Barta

Hello, there! My name is Preston Barta, and I am the features editor of Fresh Fiction and senior film critic at the Denton Record-Chronicle. My cinematic love story began where I was born: off planet on the isolated desert world of the Jakku system. It's there I passed the time scavenging for loose parts with my good friend Rey. One day I found an old film projector and a dusty reel of the 1975 film JAWS. It rocked my world so much that I left my kinfolk in the rearview (I so miss their morning cups of green milk) to pursue my dreams of writing about film. It wasn't long until I met two gents who said they would give me a lift. I can't recall their names, but one was an older man who liked to point a lot and the other was a tall, hairy fella. They got me as far as one of Jupiter's moons where we crossed paths with the U.S.S. Enterprise. Some pointy-eared bastard said I was clear to come aboard. He saw that I was clutching my beloved shark movie and invited me to the "moving pictures room" where he was screening the 1993 film JURASSIC PARK to his crew. He said my life would be much more prosperous if I were familiar with more work by the god named Steven Spielberg. From there, my love for cinema blossomed. Once we reached planet Earth, everything changed. I found the small town of Denton, TX, and was welcomed into the Barta family. They showed me the writings of local film critic Boo Allen. He became my hero and caused me to chase a degree in film and journalism. After my studies at graduate of the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, I met some film critics who showed me the ropes and got me into my first press screening: 2011's THE GREEN LANTERN. Don't worry; I recovered just fine. MAD MAX: FURY ROAD was only four years away.