Tag: Clint Eastwood

April 23, 2010 / / Main Slate Archive

William Benker

Yojimbo – 1961 – dir. Akira Kurosawa

It’s common Kurosawa knowledge that Japan’s greatest director was a huge fan of American westerns.  The wandering warrior often casually walks into a village at war.  What Kurosawa delivers in Yojimbo is a western all its own.  Complete with stand offs, hostages and a local brewery, the film encompasses a variety of talents at work.  Along with the usual duo of Kurosawa and Toshiro Mifune, Yojimbo exemplifies the valiant efforts that go on behind scenes, raising the film above most western/gangster stories to an experience so entertaining, it illustrates the significance it plays in later American cinema.

October 26, 2009 / / Main Slate Archive

By Paula Delaney

Mystic River – 2003 – dir. Clint Eastwood

Director Clint Eastwood weaves a tangled web in this movie that provides excellent cinematography, particularly with shots of Boston. The movie contains a number of parallels, beginning with the scene of three young boys in South Boston playing in the street, when one of them gets abducted by two men.  A parallel scene occurs toward the end of the movie, when the abducted boy, Dave Boyle (Tim Robbins) is now a man and again falls prey to another type of abduction.  This time he innocently joins the Savage Brothers (gang type characters) who take him to a bar where his once childhood friend, Jimmy (Sean Penn), accuses him of killing his daughter.  There is a shot of an older but just as fragile Dave looking out the rear window of the car as it speeds away, similar to the earlier shot when he was abducted as a child.

April 23, 2007 / / Film Notes

By Robert Farley

In a March 3 American Prospect article, Charles Taylor did a fine job of debunking the myth of Clint Eastwood. While Eastwood is a talented filmmaker, his catalogue is uneven, and the worst work nearly unwatchable. Unfortunately, in the process of criticizing Eastwood, Taylor gets his latest work, Letters from Iwo Jima, badly wrong.

April 23, 2007 / / Film Notes

By Stuart Kurtz

We’ve come to have certain expectations of World War II films over the years. We expect to see bloodshed, of course. We know there will be sacrifices, as well as displays bravery and heroism. We know we will see men put to the reaches of endurance and conquer their fears. These are givens. World War II films, as opposed to those about Vietnam, have usually conveyed these principles. There are exceptions: George C. Scott barking and slapping his way to immortality in Patton, and the problem of what’s worth sacrificing oneself for in Saving Private Ryan. Clint Eastwood has one of the handful of alternate views of what they call “The Good War.” The film’s tagline, “a single shot can save the war,” signals Eastwood’s intention, as it points up the difference between publicity, one photo, and reality, the actuality of fighting on that island.