Recently released on Blu-ray, High Plains Drifter is one of my favorite Clint Eastwood films. Eastwood stars as the nameless Stranger who wanders into the lawless western mining town of Lago. After dispatching three outlaws with relative ease, the town decides to hire the Stranger to deal with three gunfighters (Geoffrey Lewis, Anthony James, Dan Vadis) on their way back to the town which allowed, and then jailed, the outlaws for killing the town’s sheriff.
The Stranger agrees, but decides to take payment for his services in unusual ways, including raping own of the women folk (Marianna Hill) who gets in his way, making the town jester (Billy Curtis) the new sheriff, and ordering the entire town to paint every building in Lago bright red.
Although High Plains Drifter isn’t exactly subtle, the allegory of vengeance works well as the audience, but not the towns folk, will soon guess who the Stranger is and what brought him to Lago.
Trouble with the Curve, a tale of an old baseball scout (Clint Eastwood) reconnecting with his estranged daughter (Amy Adams) on his final recruiting trip, is exactly what you’d expect. In fact, less than halfway through the film I correctly predicted how every single storyline would end. The by-the-book tale is an odd mashup cashing in on the success of Moneyball and Grand Torino (with a romantic comedy thrown in for good measure). Sadly, but not surprisingly, Trouble with the Curve is nothing more than blatant Oscar bait and forgettable feelgood pre-holiday fodder.
Clint Eastwood is in full grizzled mode in this halftime spot from last night’s Super Bowl from Dodge, Jeep, and Chrysler. As the commercial asks for the country to come together in a time of national crisis I’m gonna guess Republicans are going to hate the ad for its evil communist/socialist/terrorist message. Hell, its something Obama might say!
For his latest film director Clint Eastwood teams up with Milk writer Dustin Lance Black to examine the life of one of the 20th Century’s most famous, and infamous, men ever employed by the United States Government – J. Edgar Hoover. Eastwood and Black offer us a Hoover who was a fascinating figure, a great American, and a deeply flawed human being unprepared to deal with his own paranoia, latent homosexuality, and the eventual wealth of power he possessed as the first Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.