1999 Certificate: 15

Synopsis

The idyllic life of Libby Parsons (Ashley Judd) turns into a nightmare when her husband disappears overboard during a sailing weekend. Things get worse when she is convicted of his murder - but is he really dead and has she been the victim of an elaborate conspiracy? The intriguing premise is that you can never be convicted of the same crime twice.

Director

  • Bruce Beresford

Cast

  • Roma Maffia

  • Bruce Greenwood

  • Annabeth Gish

  • Tommy Lee Jones

  • Ashley Judd

Review

Director Bruce Beresford last hit the big-time when he paired Jessica Tandy and Morgan Freeman in Driving Miss Daisy.

While he didn't scoop any Oscars for Double Jeopardy, Ashley Judd and Tommy Lee Jones proved to be every bit as lethal a combination at the US box office.

The story is that of a woman, Libby (Judd), who is convicted of her husband's (Greenwood) murder and accordingly sentenced to prison.

While there, she discovers that her husband is, in fact, alive and kicking; and, when informed of the double jeopardy law (that no one can be tried for the same crime twice), she decides to serve her time and exact some revenge.

Judd finds herself in the kind of role usually reserved for muscle-bound action heroes, spending her time behind bars working out and training for revenge.

Libby emerges from jail looking, if anything, even more gorgeous than she did when she was locked up.

She's assigned to a halfway house, where her parole officer is a hard-bitten man of few and succinct words, played by Tommy Lee Jones.

Their scenes together are good ones and, when she feeds him the same heartfelt lines that worked with the parole board, he barks, as only Tommy Lee Jones can: "I'm not interested in your contrition. I'm interested in your behaviour. Get out of here and behave yourself."

In an obvious effort to keep Libby from being too cold-blooded, her main motive to find her husband is not to settle the score, but merely to see her son again.

The presence of Judd in the lead does go a long way in keeping the film entertaining.