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Clint Eastwood

Which film is voted as the best Western film in Clint Eastwood’s film career ?

There are certain performers who become synonymous with not so much a character but rather an archetype. Bruce Lee? Martial artists. Gerard Butler? Cops, Secret Service agents, the like. Toshiro Mifune? The greatest screen samurai of all time.And when it comes to cowboys, there’s one name at which the subject begins and ends. With zero disrespect meant to John Wayne, Clint Eastwood is and has always been the ultimate screen cowboy.

His films, and the characters he’s played in them, have long defined the Western genre. He brought allure and nuance to a well-trodden archetype and his imprint can still be felt today in everything  from Deadwood to Logan.Eastwood even seemed to have called it a day on his time on horseback wearing boots and spurs, but 2021 will see him return to the genre in the forthcoming Cry Macho.Whether it stands up as one of his great cowboy performances remains to be seen.Until we know for sure, here are some of the best cowboy performances Clint has to offer.

THE MAN WITH NO NAME


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Eastwood redefined what a cowboy could be with The Man With No Name, the mysterious and infinitely badass protagonist of Sergio Leone’s genre-defining Dollars Trilogy. Throughout A Fistful of Dollars, For A Few Dollars More, and The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly, The Man moves through a brutal Western landscape of memorable characters, moral ambiguity, and of course a whole lot of gunfights. Every screen cowboy who has come since – including those played by Clint – lives in his shadow.

ROWDY YATES

If you want to start at the real beginning, Eastwood’s breakout role was playing the young rambunctious Rowdy Yates on long-running TV western Rawhide. Eastwood played the wildcard to Eric Fleming’s Gil Favor.The show was a hit back in the day and while you may not find the same visceral thrills in it that a Leone Western provides, it’s still got its charms that hold up to this day. More importantly, it’s ground zero for Clint’s foray into the world of Westerns.Eastwood’s Jed Cooper bridges the gap between Western and revenge film in this number about a Marshal who survives a lynching and hunts down the gang responsible. It’s a great time and well worth spending two hours with.

JOE KIDD


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The protagonist of the eponymous film, Eastwood’s turn as ex-bounty hunter Joe Kidd isn’t quite as esteemed as his other cowboy performances. The film was met to middling reviews at the time and definitely isn’t a part of the modern Western canon.However, there’s still a good reason to bring this one up: Joe Kidd is written by the legendary author/screenwriter Elmore Leonard, meaning it’s an opportunity to hear Eastwood recite dialogue written by one of the greatest dialogue-writers of all time.

THE STRANGER

It’s difficult to put into words why The Stranger from High Plains Drifter warrants mentioning here without spoiling why that is. If you’re a Western or Eastwood fan who’s yet to take this one in, best to do it blind.

WILL MUNNY


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Eastwood’s masterpiece both in front of the camera and behind it, Unforgiven sees the Western legend tie a bow on the genre and his career as a drifter at large. It’s a stunning meditation on violence and the weight that men who trade in it must carry with them. Eastwood has never been better – due in no small part to it effectively functioning as a spiritual ending for The Man With No Name, the cowboy legend Eastwood made his name playing.

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Clint Eastwood

Clint Eastwood May Replace Steven Spielberg as ‘American Sniper’ Director

American Sniper – based on the late Chris Kyle’s memoir “American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History” – has attracted some big Hollywood talent, ever since Bradley Cooper’s 22nd & Indiana production company picked up the rights in 2012 (with Cooper attaching himself as the star and producer). Case in point, Cooper’s Silver Linings Playbook writer/director David O. Russell was reported as being the first serious contender in consideration for the helming job on Sniper.

Russell has decided to look elsewhere, where it concerns the possible followup to his next project: the true-story historical dramedy American Hustle (also starring Cooper). Steven Spielberg appeared to be all-ready to commit as director on American Sniper back in May of 2013, but he then dropped out around three months later.

Deadline is reporting that Warner Bros. wants American Sniper to begin filming by the first quarter of 2014. That could mean the studio intends to release the movie during the subsequent awards season; or, at least, have the Sniper adaptation ready in time to make an Oscar-qualifying limited theatrical run in December next year.

However, in order for that to be feasible, WB is going to need a director known for working fast, efficiently and effectively to captain the American Sniper ship – which may be part of the reason why the studio has begun “tentative negotiations” with Clint Eastwood, so as to have the Oscar-winning legend take the helm. If a deal is struck, then Eastwood will begin filming his Jersey Boys musical adaptation at the conclusion of this month (August 2013, at the time of writing this), before he wraps up production a couple months later and then jumps head-first into principal photography on Sniper.

Kyle’s American Sniper book – detailing how the former Navy SEAL went “from Texas rodeo cowboy to expert marksman and feared assassin” – has been adapted into movie script form by Jason Dean Hall. The latter’s artistic credibility took a hit this past week, due to the poor critical reception for Paranoia (which Hall co-wrote). I’m taking the time to note this because Eastwood has a tendency to direct scripts with potential – something that Hall’s American Sniper script draft clearly has (given the talent it has managed to attract).

Problem is, Clint the director is able to work faster because he skips on polishing or fine-tuning the scripts he works from, as has become increasingly noticeable in his more recent films (see: Invictus, J. Edgar) – meaning, he may not be the right guy to give Hall’s American Sniper script draft any necessary tweaks it needs to realize its full promise. Moreover, Eastwood’s no-budge directorial temperament often gives rise to a slow-paced and soulfully-morose final product – but is that the right approach to Kyle’s story, passing over how respectful Eastwood would be towards his subject?

How about it, then: Clint Eastwood to direct American Sniper, yay or nay?

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Clint Eastwood

Clint Eastwood to Direct ‘Jersey Boys’ Film?

These days, actor/director Clint Eastwood is best known as the filmmaker behind hard-hitting dramas like Million Dollar Baby and Mystic River. However, the former Dirty Harry has been looking to try his hand at a very different genre for quite a while – the musical.

For years, Eastwood has been developing a remake of A Star Is Born, which was most recently brought to the big screen in 1976 with Barbara Streisand in the lead. Eastwood’s version – which would be the third remake of the original 1937 production – was set to star Beyoncé Knowles. However, Knowles has since dropped out of the project, leaving it in a state of limbo for now.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Eastwood will instead shift his focus over to another musical project with the film adaptation of the Tony Award-winning Broadway production Jersey Boys. The plot focuses on the rise and fall of musical group Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons and uses the group’s music to tell its story. Jon Favreau had previously been attached to direct the film.

If Eastwood takes on Jersey Boys, the film would likely be his next directorial project, followed (presumably) by A Star Is Born. The latter film is currently courting Grammy-winning jazz singer and bassist Esperanza Spalding to star, though the project has also faced difficulty in casting its male lead. Sean Penn is among the most recent crop of actors being discussed for the role.

Eastwood’s decision to move on from A Star Is Born is a wise one, considering that project looks like it will take a while to gain any traction. Besides, a filmmaker as accomplished as Eastwood can lend just the right amount of gravitas to something like Jersey Boys. After last summer’s Rock of Ages failed to score at the box office, audiences may need convincing to check out another “jukebox musical.”

Do you think Eastwood is a good fit for Jersey Boys? Let us know in the comments section below.

Stay tuned to Screen Rant for the latest news on the Jersey Boys movie as this story develops.

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Clint Eastwood

‘Trouble with the Curve’ Images: Clint Eastwood Returns to Acting

Clint Eastwood hasn’t appeared onscreen in four years, and the last time he acted under the direction of someone other than… well, himself was in 1993. The 82-year old Hollywood legend returns to the big screen in Trouble with the Curve from his protégé Robert Lorenz, who’s worked on-and-off as an assistant director and/or producer on Eastwood’s films (beginning with Bridges of Madison County).

Eastwood co-headlines Trouble with the Curve alongside three-peat Oscar-nominee Amy Adams. The supporting cast isn’t shabby either, including John Goodman, Justin Timberlake, Robert Patrick, Matthew Lillard (The Descendants), and semi-newcomer Joe Massingill.

Trouble with the Curve is a father-daughter relationship drama explored through the lens of an off-the-field sports drama. Newcomer Randy Brown’s script revolves around an Atlanta Braves scout (Eastwood) who on the verge of being put out to pasture, due to his diminishing eyesight and old-fashioned approach to recruiting players (obviously, he doesn’t subscribe to the Moneyball school of thought).

Eastwood’s character convinces his estranged daughter (Adams) to accompany and assist him on what could be his last assignment, to determine whether or not a promising power hitter (Massingill) has potential to make it in the big leagues. Timberlake plays a player-turned-scout who’s on good terms with Eastwood, but risks trouble when he starts getting too friendly with Adams.

Lorenz has the opportunity to demonstrate the directorial tricks he’s picked up on working with Eastwood over the years, while establishing himself as a reputable storyteller on Trouble with the Curve (his feature-length directorial debut). The two-time Oscar nominee certainly works as efficiently as his mentor, given the six-month turnaround between the film’s production start date and its release this fall.

Moreover, Trouble with the Curve could satisfy as a capstone to Eastwood’s acting legacy, much like Unforgiven did for his days working in the western genre; not to mention, Gran Torino served as a swansong to his career playing characters who’re rough around the edges (ex. Harry Callahan). If Eastwood turns in a performance deemed awards-worthy by his peers, well, that’s icing on the cake.

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