The Conspirator

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Released 2011

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Movie Summary

Director:
Robert Redford
Released:
2011
Rating:
PG-13
In the wake of Abraham Lincoln's assassination, seven men and one woman are arrested and charged with conspiring to kill the President, Vice President, and Secretary of State. The lone woman charged, Mary Surratt (ROBIN WRIGHT) owns a boarding house where John Wilkes Booth (TOBY KEBBELL) and others met and planned the simultaneous attacks. Against the ominous back-drop of post-Civil War Washington, newly-minted lawyer, Frederick Aiken (JAMES McAVOY) reluctantly agrees to defend Surratt before a military tribunal. Aiken realizes his client may be innocent and that she is being used as bait and hostage in order to capture the only conspirator to have escaped a massive manhunt, her own son, John (JOHNNY SIMMONS). As the nation turns against her, Surratt is forced to rely on Aiken to uncover the truth and save her life. From director Robert Redford, The Conspirator is a riveting thriller that tells a powerful story about America then and now.

Metacritic Score

  • 70

    Los Angeles Times Kenneth Turan

    The resolution and strength of Wright's unimpeachable performance makes the whole story seem flesh-and-blood real in a way that it would not otherwise be.

  • 50

    Variety Justin Chang

    This methodical courtroom drama is charged with impassioned performances and an unimpeachable liberal message. But its stodgy emphasis on telling over showing will limit its reach ...

  • 40

    The New York Times A.O. Scott

    The few glimpses we catch of the Ford's Theater production of "Our American Cousin" are unfortunately the liveliest and most convincing moments in this well-meaning, misbegotten mo...

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