Double Jeopardy

Tucson Weekly

DIRECTED BY: Bruce Beresford

REVIEWED: 09-27-99

Ashley Judd does hard time for supposedly murdering her husband for a cool $2 mil in life insurance, only to find out he's alive, wealthy, and partnered with the best friend who graciously adopted their young son after her incarceration. The plot is contrived and flawed, and the action's a bit slow, but who can resist the diminutive Judd's mercenary resolve to get revenge and legal custody by hunting down and killing her enemy? This is knee-jerk cinema at its best: hardened but principled heroes (Judd and her crusty parole officer, played by Tommy Lee Jones); an utterly evil villain (Bruce Greenwood as the conniving husband); and just the kind of flawed, simplistic criminal justice system we've come to expect in the post-O.J. entertainment era. It's a bit ridiculous, but it's the kind of dramatic, pre-meditated murder one can only experience through fiction or celebrity scandal. And who has time these days for the long, drawn-out legal process of the latter? Double Jeopardy takes less than two hours, and something resembling justice prevails.

--Mari Wadsworth

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