Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Adapted from the play by Elmer Rice, Counsellor-at-Law is the story of a successful Jewish lawyer George Simon (John Barrymore) who finds it's lonely at the top. Simon's wife (Doris Kenyon) and children look down upon him because of his humble upbringings, while his mother reprimands him for turning his back on his heritage. Simon is threatened with disbarment when a rival digs up a big wormy can of legal wrongdoing in Simon's past, but this is only the beginning of the end. When the beleaguered lawyer discovers that his wife has been unfaithful, he looks out the window of his Empire State Building office and contemplates suicide. Simon is brought to his senses by his faithful secretary (Bebe Daniels), who has loved him all along. Filled with vivid character vignettes and blessed with energetic direction by William Wyler, Counsellor-at-Law is one of the best "lawyer" films of the 1930s.
lawyer, career, secretary, extramarital-affair, heritage, past, Judaism, office, window, mother, rags-to-riches