When I heard that they were making a TV show based on The Firm (a sequel, really, taking place ten years later), I decided to finally consume the book and watch the movie (I saw it when I was a yungun, but only paid half-attention). Hollywood has a tendency to make movies about two grades worse than the book. The Chamber was a mediocre book that became an obnoxious movie that reversed the few good traits of the book. The Firm was actually a good book, but the movie was rather mediocre. Not in the way that books are hard to translate to movie because of what you have to cut out, though that’s always an issue, but rather because they completely changed the ending. Warning, spoilers ahead for the book, the movie, and the TV show.

The basic story of both the book and the movie is that Mitchell McDeere, fresh out of law school, is hired on by a corrupt law firm in Memphis that is in bed with the Chicago mafia. In the book, McDeere, his wife, and his brother all sneak off to the Carribean. McDeere gives the Feds enough on both the firm and the mafia that the feds won’t go after him, but skedaddles for fear of what the mafia does. In the movie, he works it so that he gives the feds some dirt on the firm, but not the mafia, so that he can stay in Memphis.

Which makes no sense. The FBI isn’t interested in the law firm except as a way to get to the mafia. So the dangling question, after watching the movie, was why the mafia was okay with this when the inevitable result of the firm’s arrest is that they would flip on them (I don’t believe that lawyer-client confidentiality applies when both are acting in concert in the commission of a crime).

Well, the makers of the TV show saw the same thing that I did and decided to use it for the show. In the show, the feds leaned on the firm, who then rolled on the mafia and put their don in prison. At which point, of course, McDeere is in the mafia’s crosshairs and has to go into Witness Protection. The show takes place ten years later as they are getting out of Witness Protection because, well, they’re tired of it. Surprise surprise, the mafia is still after him. He’s with a new (also corrupt) firm. And that’s the premise of the TV show. So far, I am not hugely impressed. I’ve only seen the first two-in-one episode, and I’ll give it a couple more, but it’s pretty low on my list of priorities.

Anyhow, I thought it was funny that they devoted a new TV show to the egregious plot hole in the movie. I still don’t understand why the movie changed the ending, except as a possible sequel (like another one starring Tom Cruise, not a TV show fifteen years later).


Category: Theater

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2 Responses to A TV Show Based Around a Plot Hole

  1. Black and Blue Man says:

    Folks leaving Witness Protection – and against the Mafia – because they’re tired of it?!?

    And the lead is working for another corrupt law firm?!?

    Good golly! What brain-people came up with that double-barrelled nonsense?!?

  2. trumwill says:

    Yeah, it’s a stretch. They try to explain coming out of the WPP because the mafia leader is dead so they think that they are finally free to do so. And that they are tired of moving around. However, if they’re always moving around it means that the mafia did not forget. The death of Don Moralto, especially when he died in prison, wouldn’t really change that. The WPP folks understand this, but McDeere is stubborn on the matter.

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