Roman J. Israel, Esq. certainly seems to be a change of pace for writer-director Dan Gilroy, who looks to follow-up his 2014 crime-thriller Nightcrawler with this rather conventional-looking courtroom drama surrounding a lawyer looking to make a name for himself in the overburdened Los Angeles criminal court system.
While Denzel Washington looks simply outstanding in the role of the title character, a driven, idealistic defense attorney whose life is upended when a series of turbulent series of events challenge the activism that has defined his career, Roman J. Israel, Esq. received fairly mixed reviews out of TIFF, many of which couldn’t help but note how the film doesn’t hold up over the course of its 133-minute runtime.
It doesn’t seem likely that Roman J. Israel, Esq. will earn Gilroy his second nomination in the Best Original Screenplay category, but Washington, who has garnered seven acting nominations over the course of his extensive career, may earn his eighth in what is sure to be a very crowded Best Actor category this awards season.
Sony Pictures will release Roman J. Israel, Esq. on November 3, 2017.