Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Roger Michell|
|Produced by||Scott Rudin
|Written by||Chap Taylor
Samuel L. Jackson
|Music by||David Arnold|
|Distributed by||Paramount Pictures|
|Release date(s)||April 12, 2002|
|Running time||99 minutes|
An unofficial Bollywood remake, titled Taxi No. 9211, with an adapted story was made in 2006.
A successful New York attorney, Gavin Banek, is in a rush to file a power of appointment, which will prove a dead man signed his foundation over to Banek's law firm. He has a collision with another car, belonging to an insurance salesman, Doyle Gipson, who is also in a rush to a hearing to try to gain custody of his children and to prevent his estranged wife from taking them to Oregon. Banek tries to brush Gipson off with a blank check thereby disobeying the law. After Gipson refuses to accept the check and voices his desire to "do the right thing", that is, filing a police report and insurance claim, Banek strands Gipson, telling him, "better luck next time". After arriving to the court late, Gipson learns that it proceeded without him and that it didn't go in his favor.
Unfortunately for Banek, he dropped the crucial power of appointment file at the scene of the accident, and the judge gives him until the end of the day to re-obtain the papers and present them. Gipson, who took the papers, is in a state of dilemma on whether to return the file especially after the events of the day. On the other hand, Banek desperate to get his papers back, goes to someone skilled with computers and gets him to switch off Gipson's credit. Gipson needed credit for a loan so he could buy a house for his family, and he becomes further enraged, determined to make life difficult for Banek.
Both men continue to do morally reprehensible things in an attempt to one-up each other, and eventually they begin to question their actions. Though it is made clear that Banek and Gipson are radically different, they both have an angry, vengeful streak, each capable of abandoning his morals just to punish the other. The film ends with both men having a new outlook on life, concentrating on ethics and the moral implications of their actions. Ultimately the two men apologize to each other and Gipson returns the file, but it looks to be too late for both of what they were trying to do. Banek ends up using the file to force his boss to do the right thing and plans to represent Gipson pro bono so he can get the house he wants. Banek also visits Gipson's wife to explain everything to her, knowing he owes Gipson that much. The movie ends with Gipson's wife and children smiling at him from across the street, indicating a possible reconciliation or at the very least some kind of arrangement between the two in the future.
- Ben Affleck as Gavin Banek
- Samuel L. Jackson as Doyle Gipson
- Toni Collette as Michelle
- Sydney Pollack as Stephen Delano
- Richard Jenkins as Walter Arnell
- William Hurt as Doyle's Sponsor
- Amanda Peet as Cynthia Delano Banek
- Matt Malloy as Ron Cabot
- Tina Sloan as Mrs. Delano
- Ileen Getz as Ellen
- Bruce Altman as Terry Kaufman
- Dylan Baker as Finch
Several themes are explored. A recurring instance is irony, a good example being the two students whom Banek interviews apparently for roles of articled clerkship with the firm, fresh out of law school. The young man especially says he would like to be a lawyer because he believes people are by nature good, and that conflict arises from historical forces, the law being there as a "buffer", him believing strongly in fairness and justice. He is given the role by Banek, who invites him to see for himself just how the law is in practice. The audience is left wondering how very different the two characters' days would have been had only Banek cared to ask Gipson where he was going that morning, that is the same place as he, to give him a friendly lift.
There is a sense of fate that is seen when Gipson returns the file to Banek. The two protagonists realize that while they had both been blaming the accident at the beginning of the film for their misfortunes thereafter, their lives had always been leading towards where they were in life at that moment. Gipson realizes that he had always been a "very, very unstable father" and Banek realizes that the trust fund case had not been handled the right way from the very beginning.
Box office 
Critical response 
The film received favorable reviews from critics. Review aggregate Rotten Tomatoes reports that 77% of critics have given the film a positive review based on 149 reviews, with an average score of 7/10. Metacritic gave it an average score of 69 out of 100 from the 36 reviews it collected. Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times praised the film, calling it one of the year´s best films.
- Changing Lanes (2002). Box Office Mojo. Retrieved October 7, 2010.
- Changing Lanes Movie Reviews, Pictures. Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved October 7, 2010.
- Changing Lanes Reviews, Ratings, Credits, and More at Metacritic
- Ebert, Roger (April 12, 2002). "Changing Lanes :: Reviews". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved March 12, 2013.
- Official website
- Changing Lanes at the Internet Movie Database
- Changing Lanes at Rotten Tomatoes
- Changing Lanes at Metacritic
- Changing Lanes at Box Office Mojo