True Believer
True Believer (1989)

The only True Believer at the beginning of this drama is idealistic young attorney Robert Downey Jr., who apprentices under the guidance of celebrated civil-rights activist James Woods. Alas, in the years since the sixties, Woods has become… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: January 1, 1989
DVD Release Date: April 2, 2001
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Critic Score: 95% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Richard Schickel
TIME Magazine

Woods' angry energy is clarifying as well as terrifying, and when he unleashes it (usually without warning), the effect is to focus our attention where it belongs, not on a suspense story but on the mysteries of human behavior.

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Hal Hinson
Washington Post

Ruben relies too heavily on Woods' whirring turbines to power his scenes.

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TV Guide

Woods clearly relishes his chance to display a wide range of emotions within his patented maverick persona, and Downey also acquits himself well in a much less challenging role.

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Time Out

A riveting legal drama.

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Desson Thomson
Washington Post

What counts in Believer is not what happens but how. This is as good a how as any.

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Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Spirituality and Practice

Really clicks as a modern day morality play.

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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

When I see Woods on the screen in the first shot of a movie I sort of smile to myself because I know that something strange and offbeat and maybe even inspired is about to happen.

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Woods, as ever, is wired for a fight -- in or outside the courtroom. It's all Downey Jr can do to hold him back.

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Blake Davis
KFOR Channel 4 News

One of the best courtroom dramas ever made, and a movie that almost nobody knows about. A terrific picture.

More reviews for True Believer

Flixster Audience Score: 63% Flixster User Reviews
Jim Hunter
A defense attorney with a ludicrous pony tail defends a man accused of murder. I'm surprised by the critics' positive reviews of this thoroughly… More
meril lupin
Fun albeit forgettable. I got it for Robert, but ended up watching it for James Woods. It's a feel-good lawyer movie that doesn't go above your head… More
Conner Rainwater
I don't think anyone could prance around in an outrageous gray ponytail besides James Woods. He plays a very unique type of hippie lawyer that I don't… More
Marcus Woolcott
Great little 80's buddy-lawyer film
John Ballantine
Not bad but you would expect more from Woods and Downey who have contributed to the acting canon much more effectively in other films. Consider this to be a… More