The Paper Chase

The drudgery and challenge of Harvard Law School for a beginning student (Timothy Bottoms) might not have seemed a promising subject for a commercial picture, but this was so popular it became a TV series. Assisted by Gordon Willis’s cinematography and John Houseman’s performance (which turned him from a stage and film producer into a popular actor) as the demanding Professor Kingsfield, director James Bridges manages to do a fair job with the semihokey material. Adapted from John Jay Osborn Jr.’s novel; with Lindsay Wagner, Graham Beckel, and Edward Herrmann (1973). (JR)

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