Star-Studded Crime Thriller On Hulu Is A One-Of-A-Kind Legal Mystery

By Shanna Mathews-Mendez | Updated

Among John Grisham’s novels that have been turned into films, Runaway Jury is up there with the best of them. Though slight changes have been made to the film adaptation, John Cusack, Gene Hackman, Dustin Hoffman, and Rachel Weisz make this movie worth watching. Fortunately, you can stream it on Hulu. 

Runaway Jury Is Another John Grisham Adaptation

John Grisham is not only well known for writing excellent legal crime thrillers, having been a lawyer himself for many years, but his books are also well known for delivering top-notch adaptations. A Time to Kill, The Firm, The Client, and The Rainmaker are just a few examples of high-quality films that watch almost exactly as they read. Runaway Jury is another in a long line of successes delivered by the author, and it will keep you guessing until the very end. 

Gene Hackman Is Fantastic

The story is set in New Orleans, where a man is killed in a mass shooting. Two years later, the man’s wife, Celeste Wood sues the gun manufacturer, Vicksburg Firearms, for gross negligence.

She is represented by Wendell Rohr (Hoffman). Opposing counsel is trying to prove that the firearms company is blameless, of course, and they’re willing to go to illegal lengths of corruption and jury tampering to do it, thanks to Rankin Fitch (Hackman), the jury consultant. The problems begin when both sides of the case realize they have a runaway jury on their hands. 

Filled With Twists And Turns

Cusack plays Nick Easter, a juror who presents himself as willing to sway the jury. His girlfriend Marlee (Weisz) is on the outside of the case, calling both the defense and prosecuting attorneys, offering to sway the jury in their favor for the low price of $10 million.

Rohr stands on principle and refuses to be corrupted, sure that the case will be found in his client’s favor. Fitch goes on the offensive and breaks into Nick’s apartment to get dirt on him. Runaway Jury then gets even crazier when Nick shows camera footage of Fitch’s guys breaking into his apartment. Now, the jury is sequestered. 

A Question Of Integrity

Throughout the trial, we watch Cusack’s Nick sitting on the jury, discussing the trial with the jurors, and largely advocating for truth and justice. He finds himself on the wrong side of a fellow juror, Frank Herrera, played believably by Cliff Curtis, who is arguing that the firearms company cannot possibly be responsible for how people use their guns. This runaway jury seems to be swayed in one direction and then in the other, keeping tensions high. 

In one twist after another, you’re constantly wondering which way this case will go, if Nick is a bad guy, if Marlee is really going to sell the verdict to the highest bidder, and either of the attorneys will be able to keep their integrity.

Streaming on Hulu


Rotten Tomatoes has Runaway Jury at a 73 percent approval rating, which is fair, considering the film runs a bit long at just over two hours and certainly could have left out some of the novel’s elements. But I’d still recommend it to anyone looking for a nice thrill to stream on Hulu on a Friday night.