Claudette Barius
Owen Gleiberman
April 22, 2011 AT 04:00 AM EDT

The Conspirator

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
PG-13
runtime
122 minutes
Wide Release Date
04/15/11
performer
Robin Wright, James McAvoy, Tom Wilkinson
director
Robert Redford
distributor
Lionsgate
author
James Solomon
genre
Drama

We gave it a C

It’s hard to say what’s more creaky: the dutiful, muffled tone that director Robert Redford brings to this courtroom drama set after the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, or the way he uses the trial of Mary Surratt (Robin Wright), a boarding-house proprietor wrongly accused of conspiracy (her son was a plotter in the Lincoln hit), as a metaphor for the vengeful excesses of the post-9/11 age. James McAvoy, as the Civil War veteran who defends Surratt, has an avid presence, but the movie is stiff-jointed and dull. C

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