Goodnight for Justice (2011) Luke Perry, Lara Gilchrist, Ron Lea, Terence Kelly, Gabrielle Rose Movie Review

Goodnight for Justice (2011)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Luke Perry as John Goodnight in Goodnight for Justice (2011)

Beverly Hills, Western

As a child John Goodnight (Luke Perry - The Pledge) witnessed the murder of his mother and father and now having grown up he finds himself as a circuit judge sent to Wyoming where whilst doing his job also hopes to track down the man responsible for their deaths. His job sees him travel from town to town dealing with the petty crimes, domestic rows as well as issues of racism till eventually he finds himself in the town of Crooked Stick where he not only meets the pretty Kate Ramsey (Lara Gilchrist - Meteor Storm) but also businessman, Dan Reed (Ron Lea), who basically owns the town and with an old leg injury makes John suspicious.

I won't lie because "Goodnight for Justice" is pretty stereotypical of modern made for TV westerns from the unoriginal story to the way it comes across. As such for the most those who like their westerns will find themselves presented with various cliches thrown together from John being a man haunted by the murder he witnessed as a child to his need for justice to be able to move on. Add to that a typical plot line which sees him save and fall for the pretty Kate whilst then having to deal with a town run by an evil business man and you have nothing but familiarity. But there is an exception because we have a twist and not a bad one at that because it forces John to deal with his feelings towards Kate.

Lara Gilchrist as Kate Ramsey in Goodnight for Justice (2011)

Now all of this typical storyline comes across in a typical easy going manner with the character of John made to be a classic hero figure with the weight of the past haunting him. We see him be the lone man in the west treating everyone fairly no matter what the colour of their skin and when he can't dispense the ruling he would like to in the courtroom he does so in private later on. All of which is done in a semi humorous manner with John being quiet but sure of himself, world weary but also sharp and afraid of no one. Compared to the westerns of the 50s it is cheesy especially when it comes to him being a lover, but at the same time it is kind of entertaining for being a little cheesy.

The daft thing is that whilst the easy going nature of "Goodnight for Justice" makes it cheesy Luke Perry does strike a good pose as a lawman. Okay he looks a bit clean with his bright waistcoat but he has a Clint Eastwood look going on but one which is softer and friendlier. And Perry works well with Lara Gilchrist who together have this wonderful playfulness going on when it comes to the relationship between John and Kate. Although the scene stealer is in many ways Ron Lea as Dan Reed because he plays the corrupt businessman not as some dastardly figure but as a confident thug not afraid to dish out a beating.

What this all boils down to is that "Goodnight for Justice" is a stereotypical made for TV western which has an easy going nature and plenty of prettiness. It doesn't compare well to westerns of the 40s and 50s even those b-westerns but is on par with the modern trend of easy to watch made for TV westerns.