Law Abiding Citizen (2009)

Law Abiding Citizen is a movie written by Kurt Wimmer and directed by F. Gray Gray about a man, Nick Rice (played by Jamie Foxx) so frustrated with the criminal justice system that he wanted it served by his own hands. His family (wife and daughter) was viciously killed but the murderers were not persecuted because of the justices departments lack of teeth and interest in the case. The situation was even aggravated when he was told that one of the suspects will only receive a minor sentence. With all the emotional distress and pressure, Nick Rice decided to no longer wait for the justice system finish its course. He made plans by himself and executed his revenge.

Nick Rice lost his confidence in the criminal justice system and executed his revenge by himself to bring about justice to his murdered wife and daughter. Ideally, his revenge was against the law. As the popular saying goes, We shall not put justice in our own hands. But can you blame a husband and a father for being so angry after waiting for 10 years for nothing The series of events that led him to mistrust the criminal justice system made Nick Rice an even more determined vigilant alert, ready and hungry for his long-sought justice and impartiality. Ten (10) years is a very a long time for someone who was left alone and miserable. Every second counts and every minute that passes is tormenting. Hence, Nick Rice lived a miserable life for 10 years waiting and hoping for justice. When he realized that his he was just waiting in vain and he came to a conviction that unless he does something to finish the case and punish his familys murderers, nothing would happen. And so he punished and chastised the murderers that took away the lives of his loved-ones without the blessings and legality of the criminal justice system.

What Nick Rice did was not legal. There was nothing legal to back up his reasons in why he personally punished his familys murderers. In other terms, he was not in the right position to do such things. As a matter of fact, his actions were even punishable by law. Revenge is not a concept promoted, supported and tolerated by the government of the United States of America. However, unlike in the books and everything written, human nature is not something robotic. There are many things that the constitution or any book about ethics can explain about human nature. People react to things differently. Each reaction is based on past and present experiences. Just like in the case of Nick Rice in the film, ideally, his actions were wrong but the question is, can he be blamed for feeling and doing so Nick Rice was a father and a husband with strong emotional and psychological ties with his family. His anger and eagerness for justice was a logical consequence of the unfortunate event.

Emotions play a big role in a persons decision making. Apparently, Nick Rice didnt decide to avenge his family overnight. In all fairness to him, he trusted the criminal justice system. But when he saw that his dead family was not getting what was due for them, he decided to take action. The justice system must give even more scrutiny to all cases and serve sentences in the fastest time possible. For sure, there are plenty of people who are in the same situation as Nick Rice in the film Law Abiding Citizen. Trust in the government especially in the justice system is very important to keep the society in order and everything in its place. Because if not, a lot of people like Nick Rice will lose confidence and take matters in their hands. Nick Rice was not right in his revenge yet he did what is just.


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