The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

May 22, 2012

One line review: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly is a fantastic Western supported by great characters and an larger than life plot.

Movie Title: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Actors: Eli Wallach, Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, Aldo Giuffrè, Luigi Pistilli, Rada Rassimov, Enzo Petito, Claudio Scarchilli, John Bartha

Director: Sergio Leone

Year: 1966

Genre: Western / Action

Method of Viewing: DVD

Location of Viewing: Home

Viewing with: No One

Rotten Tomatoes: 97% – Arguably the greatest of the spaghetti westerns, this epic features a compelling story, memorable performances, breathtaking landscapes, and a haunting score.

My rating: *****

My assessment (the first 101 words at least): The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly is the best western I’ve ever seen and has given me new found respect for Clint Eastwood. All of the characters are three dimensional and fun to watch, but Clint Eastwood steals the show as the calm and collected bad ass who always has an ace up his sleeve. I was surprised at the Civil War background, but it served the movie very well in the end, adding to the world at large and providing an appropriate backdrop. An extremely entertaining movie that may have just made me a Clint Eastwood fan for life.

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Million Dollar Baby

August 15, 2011


One line review: Million Dollar Baby gives a brutally harsh story of boxers at the end of their rope or just struggling to make a life for themselves.

Movie Title: Million Dollar Baby

Actors: Clint Eastwood, Hilary Swank, Morgan Freeman, Jay Baruchel, Mike Colter, Lucia Rijker, Brían F. O’Byrne , Anthony Mackie, Margo Martindale, Riki Lindhome, Michael Peña

Director: Clint Eastwood

Year: 2004

Genre: Drama

Method of Viewing: DVD

Location of Viewing: Home

Viewing with: No One

Rotten Tomatoes: 92% – Clint Eastwood’s assured direction – combined with knockout performances from Hilary Swank and Morgan Freeman – help Million Dollar Baby to transcend its clichés, and the result is deeply heartfelt and moving.

My rating: ****

My assessment (the first 101 words at least): There is a rather large spoiler that I will more or less gloss over, but I will say that I had the movie spoiled for me before I watched it and seriously regret it. The end point is that this film breaks a lot of cliches which is refreshing and manages to get you to care for the characters in an incredibly short amount of time. Something within you will immediately have you fighting for the characters, making the impact of the events of the third act that much more powerful. While not one of my favorites, and extremely good film.


Dirty Harry

February 21, 2011

One line review: The grandfather of the modern dirty cop, Dirty Harry manages to still be unique despite being the original.

Movie Title: Dirty Harry

Actors: Clint Eastwood, Andrew Robinson, John Vernon, Reni Santoni, Harry Guardino, John Larch, John Mitchum, Mae Mercer, Lyn Edgington

Director: Don Siegel

Year: 1971

Genre: Action

Method of Viewing: DVD

Location of Viewing: Home

Viewing with: No One

Rotten Tomatoes: 95% – A crisp, beautifully paced film, full of Siegel’s wonderful coups of cutting and framing.

My rating: ****

My assessment (the first 101 words at least): Unlike most genre starting movies, this one still feels unique and fresh. The most impressive part of this movie to me was that unlike other bad-ass cop characters, Harry has to deal with actual consequences of his actions. His illegal arrest of the villain actually causes him to be released, and the criminal uses this to his advantage to keep Harry off his back. The ending where Harry actually walks away is refreshing compared to so many other of these action movies that keep the door open for sequels. This is definitely a fantastic, action packed movie that still maintains realism.


Unforgiven

September 8, 2010

One line review: Giving the Western genre a small twist, Unforgiven gives a third dimension to it’s characters that you wouldn’t expect from this type of movie.

Movie Title: Unforgiven

Actors: Clint Eastwood, Gene Hackman, Morgan Freeman, Richard Harris

Director: Clint Eastwood

Year: 1992

Genre: Western

Method of Viewing: DVD

Location of Viewing: Home

Viewing with: No One

Rotten Tomatoes: 96% – As both director and star, Clint Eastwood strips away decades of Hollywood varnish applied to the Wild West, and emerges with a series of harshly eloquent statements about the nature of violence.

My rating: ****

My assessment (the first 101 words at least): Perhaps as my first Western to ever watch, this was a poor choice. This movie seemed more aimed towards either breaking the conventions you have assumed about a Western, or just to provide a fitting end to Clint Eastwood’s series of Western films. Either way, you can’t deny that it’s a great movie. There’s something so entertaining about watching a hard ass like Clint Eastwood struggle with everything from getting on his horse to resisting the urge to drink. You want to fight for him, you want to believe that there can be redemption. It’s a fantastic film, a great Western.