Law and Psychology at the Movies
In his review of the film The Lincoln Lawyer (2011), Jason A. Cantone notes the importance of diversifying psycholegal research, arguing that:
Much psycholegal research presents police officers as the bad guys, with experiments examining forced confessions and biased line-ups. The Lincoln Lawyer bucks this trend, presenting the police and prosecutors as people trying to do the right thing, while [the protagonist's] legal representation poses the larger ethical quandaries. This is not to say that research should stop investigating the negative impact of false confessions, biased line-ups, and the pitfalls of eyewitness and earwitness testimony. For example, Kassin et al. (2010) should be commended for their excellent article on police-induced confessions, which concluded with a recommendation to mandate the recording of all interrogations. Instead, it is a comment on the relative dearth of psycholegal research on attorney misconduct.As psychologists and legal theorists seek to bridge the gap between research in psychology and law, what research should be done to better understand the role attorney misconduct plays in the judicial process? How can psychology examine the legal and ethical quandaries faced by attorneys? How can psychology be utilized to encourage adequate representation of counsel for all clients?
By Jason A. Cantone
PsycCRITIQUES, 2011 Vol 56(30)