Matthew McConaughey stars in this film as the character Mickey Haller who is a low-life criminal attorney barely able to keep it together. Mickey survives by representing the worst criminals. Mickey works out of his Lincoln town car. He gets a big break when he gets a rich client that will pay big money for his criminal defense. The client is a rich kid, Louis Roulet (played by Ryan Phillippe) from Beverly Hills, that is accused of the murder of a prostitute.
Mickey takes the case because Roulet will pay and also Roulet convinces him, at first, that he is innocent. Quickly Mickey discovers the real deal because he represented another client Jesús Martínez (played by Michael Peña) who proclaimed innocence of murdering a prostitute in a previous case. All the evidence was circumstantial, that was used to convict the other client. Mickey advised the client to take a plea bargain and serve time instead of facing the death penalty. The problem is, that the injuries in the other case, that got an innocent man convicted, are very similar to the injuries in the current case that Mickey has representing Roulet. Because Mickey represents Roulet he is obligated to protect his current client. But Mickey is conflicted, as he discovers that he may have sent his previous client, an innocent man, Martinez, to jail because Roulet is the real killer in both cases.
Mickey discovers that Roulet has figured out the way to commit perfect crimes, because he selects a person that can be the fall guy for the crimes that Roulet commits. The fall guy is falsely charged and then convicted. That is how Roulet gets away with this. Also because he has so much money. Mickey gets the current charges against Roulet dismissed, but the testimony gets Roulet charged for the previous murder. This makes Mickey a target of Roulet. Each one has to overcome the other one. Mickey to protect himself and his family fights against both Roulet and Roulet's mother who is just as evil as her son.
Best part of story, including ending:
The best part is that a scum bag lawyer working with degenerates finds his moral center in the midst of all the killing and lying that is going on. That is ultimately what drives him to do the right thing.
Best scene in story:
When the bikers, that Mickey represented before, come to the rescue of Mickey and beat up Roulet who is threatening him. It feels like justice.
Opinion about the main character:
Criminal scum bag lawyers don't usually have any redeeming qualities, but Mickey is not as jaded as that. It is nice to see that he does want to make things right and helps to get the innocent Martinez out of jail.