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  • Writer's pictureRaychel Plath

Recharge with these binge-worthy law episodes in 2021

Sometimes you want to press pause on life whilst you recharge your waning motivation. Studying Law can be incredibly draining and time-consuming, even if it's something that you genuinely love to do on a good day. One method I've found to work is taking a time-out and watching something relevant to what I'm studying #lifehack. Generally, that would mean bingeing several seasons of Law & Order: SVU, but I thought I would mix it up and explore some recent releases dealing with the Law.

The Little Things: This is a show for the Law Student interested in Criminal Law, Criminology or Ethics. The opening scene, which features The B-52's song "Roam" and a young woman stalked by an unknown assailant, is unsettling and sets the tone for the rest of this moody crime thriller. Set in LA in the '90s, the premise is pretty standard; a disgraced cop (Denzel Washington) returns to his old stomping grounds, has a conflict with the new young gun (Rami Malek, who looks fine AF in a suit & tie) before they work together to solve a murder. However, neo-noir plot devices make this a bit more interesting than standard crime thrillers; think Zodiac crossed with Seven but with Jared Leto being annoying.

Available to rent/buy on Google Play, Apple TV & Amazon Prime.

The Dry - This is a show for the Law Student interested in Family Law and Criminal Law. If you're unsure what to watch, note that The Dry features Eric Bana in the lead role, case dismissed. Bana plays Aaron Falk, who now a Federal Agent is living in the big smoke. Agent Falk ambivalently returns to his hometown for the funeral of a childhood friend. Aaron fled his hometown over 20 years prior, following the alleged drowning death of another childhood friend. This show features a small-town mystery done well. There's also a commentary on the socio-economic impact of drought conditions on small, rural communities, particularly regarding family violence. Available to rent/buy on pretty much most streaming services.

The Mauritanian - This is a show for the Law Student interested in Ethics, Human Rights and Public International Law. Adapted from Mohamedou Ould Slahi's memoir, the film explores the legality of Slahi's capture and detention in Guantanamo Bay. Although Slahi (played by Tahar Rahim) is in custody, he corresponds with his Lawyer, Nancy Hollander (Jodie Foster). In contrast, Lieutenant Colonel Stuart Couch (Benedict Cumberbatch) is the Prosecution. Hollander's stance is pretty clear from the outset. Hollander believes that Slahi's capture and detention aren't ethical regardless of the allegations against him. Couch's allegiance to country (and his interest in the case) waivers as he encounters evidentiary issues relating to Slahi's capture and detention. There are flashbacks to Slahi's childhood, past encounters with other (alleged) terror suspects, and torture he experienced at the hands of the U.S. military. Although some scenes are incredibly graphic, the film takes an even-handed approach to the legal ethics issues during a very dark time for due process. Available to Amazon Prime subscribers.

Fisk - This is a show for the Law Student interested in Succession Law.

This delightful ABC series follows Helen Tudor-Fisk commencing work at a small firm specialising in wills and probate. Helen has no substantial experience in either subject, but since her father was a former Supreme Court Justice, they hire her. Helen is also definitely not a people person and assumes that dealing with death will be easy. However, she quickly learns the chaos that can envelop those who have lost a loved one. There are some fantastic and hilarious scenes in each episode, as Helen navigates practising an area of Law she is not interested in. This delicate ecosystem is a small office environment and getting banned from the coffee shop downstairs. Available on the ABC network.

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