Best Movies by Farr
Reversal of Fortune Poster
Released Runtime Category
1990 112 Mystery/Thrillers
Director Language
Barbet Schroeder English
Jeremy Irons, Glenn Close, Ron Silver

Reversal of Fortune

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What's it About

After the drug overdose of wealthy but miserable Sunny Von Bulow (Close) places her in a permanent vegetative state, Sunny's elder children and personal maid suspect her suave second husband, Claus (Irons), had a hand in it, and their inquiries and testimony lead to Claus's first conviction for attempted murder. Facing a long prison term, Von Bulow hires scrappy, brilliant defense lawyer Alan Dershowitz (Silver) to handle his appeal.

Why we love it

Director Schroeder's fascinating "Fortune" dramatizes the bizarre but very real 1980 crime and trial that hit the ultra-wealthy Newport set (and the rest of us) like a time bomb. The bravura performances of the stars elevate the sad, sordid aspects of the story, and Irons's portrayal of the enigmatic Claus is superb, netting him an Oscar. But Silver matches him as the mercurial Dershowitz: one of the film's great pleasures is watching how attorney and client, polar opposites in every respect but brains, work together to overturn the conviction.

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Rich Hill

BEST MOVIES BY FARR is your personal guide to great movies to rent, stream, or buy; to watch at home or on-the-go. Led by film advocate John Farr, the Best Movies by Farr team works as a "quality filter" for the discerning moviegoer. Every day, we bring you the best of the best, the fantastic familiar films and hidden gems, to answer that age-old question: "What should we watch tonight?"