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A gunfighting stranger comes to the small settlement of Lago. After gunning down three gunmen who tried to kill him, the townsfolk decide to hire the Stranger to hold off three outlaws who are on their way.
With High Plains Drifter, Clint Eastwood created arguably the most debatable and ambiguous film of his entire career - both as an actor and as a director. There is so much about this eerie western that doesn't get answered. So many details missing. So many presumptions to be made.
Most revisionist westerns of its time were busying themselves rewriting the West as it had been told by Hollywood, mostly wrongly, for over 40 years. Eastwood decided to take the traditional mainstream western, slap it around a while and show that something could still be done with it - just as long as it was willing to change.
It's well known by now that Eastwood's mysterious stranger rides into a town…
The Stranger: All these people, are they your sisters and brothers?
Preacher: They most certainly are.
The Stranger: ...Then you won't mind if they come over and stay at your place, will ya?
And when the preacher's stunned, passive look further betrays his hypocrisy, Eastwood, not content, has the holy man graciously invite the cast-out patrons into his and the other townspeople's homes... not charging them "one cent more than regular hotel rates."
A relentlessly bleak allegory of the human (American?) capacity for cowardice and avarice, with Eastwood's Stranger an almost Chigurh-like supernatural presence – slightly funnier, and only slightly more righteous.
"Yes, they're my neighbors, and they make me sick! Hiding behind words like faith, peace and trust!"
Black-as-pitch western about a community so desperately in need of a violent savior that they give a serial rapist complete control over their town in order to kill off a few bad guys. Turns out they might have bigger problems than the bandits. By giving the man with no name free reign, they expose their own hidden violence and the hypocritical values they've buried it under. They've come together as a community, but at the cost of the lives of other human beings. The unspoken exclusion (of the bandits, of the man with…
Somebody left the door open and the wrong dogs came home.
Everyone probably expected Clint Eastwood's directorial debut to be a western, but he opted to make a thriller in Play Misty for Me instead while ignoring what would have been a sure fire bet. For his sophomore effort, Eastwood might have thought there was no use putting it off, so he directed his first western, except High Plains Drifter is unlike any western Eastwood had starred in before and unlike most westerns ever made.
Don't waste your time on revenge, those that hurt you will eventually face their own karma, right? Well, thank god nobody told Clint.
A malevolently vengeful Eastwood, like the boss he is, rolls into town and Casper spanks everybody in this movie and its glorious.
Another eerily good and entertaining entry from the undisputed heavyweight champion of this beautiful genre. Boo!
The first ever western that Clint Eastwood both directed and starred in, taking notes from his peers Siegel and Leone. Make no mistake that this is no ordinary old-west tale. In fact, it's easily one of the darkest and most bizarre examples of the genre, almost playing like a supernatural ghost story.
Clint plays an unnamed drifter who enters a town named Lago with a dirty secret regarding the death of a Marshall who was whipped to death while the townspeople just stood by and allowed to happen. It's now being threatened by the same group of outlaws who they had locked away for the crime. They are soon to be released, and the stranger agrees to help the needy…
The Stranger rides away.
Clint sees Red :-) Love it.
"This is a good town! These are God-fearing people!"
"You like em, you save em."
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Some of Eastwood's finest directing, it's clear Leone taught him a thing or two. I was a bit irked by Eastwood's character UNTIL the ending, I'm ashamed I didn't get it sooner.
I'm sure this has been brought up, but when I discovered Eastwood's character was the Devil (it becomes quite obvious when he paints HELL on the town sign). He steals, corrupts, rapes, murders, and has no allies. I didn't get it until the very last shot with the music sounding similar to the Rosemary's Baby score.
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Sigh. Okay Tim, you were right. The man with no name was in fact the murdered marshal himself and not merely his brother come seeking revenge.
You are hereby entitled to one I-Told-You-So dance of duration one minute, or until the level of smug in your bloodstream reaches a dangerous level, whichever comes first.
This is one of the weirdest films I've ever seen. Is it good? I really have no idea.
It's incredibly disturbing. From the score to the imagery to the rape within the first 20 minutes of the movie...it's like a combination of a gritty '70s action movie like Dirty Harry or Death Wish, almost a Polanski-style horror movie like Repulsion maybe, and a Leone western. Eastwood as a director wasn't quite able to make everything cohesive, but it's certainly a unique, ambitious film, and I applaud it for that.
One good thing this movie has going for it is the locations and cinematography, though. That's all outstanding.
What a strange film this was. It works as a great stylish western but also has hints of supernatural elements as well. Mainly due to that incredible eerie score. Some scenes feel like something straight out of a horror film. It also has Clint Eastwood being a total badass, gunning people down, smoking his cigar, and spitting out one liners. So you really can't go wrong with that. I also loved how it puts a spin on westerns about a mysterious stranger drifting into a town and eventually saves them from evil. This was not that all haha. I was surprised by this film and it's one of the better westerns I've seen by Eastwood, outside of The Man With No Name trilogy.
As Clint Eastwood gets set to release his 35th directorial film we take a look back at his 2nd. High Plains Drifter is by most accounts a solid enough western that gets somewhat derailed by its own over the top machismo as well as its overall abhorrent treatment of women. Clint Eastwood plays the titular character, a mysterious quick draw rifleman who wanders into a seemingly idyllic frontier mining town called Lago only to be recruited by the townsfolk to help defend them against an unruly band of outlaws freshly released from prison. The film's screenplay was written by Ernest Tidyman.
It's been said that Clint Eastwood learned everything he knows about directing from his time spent working with greats…
One of the more ambitiously weird western films ever produced, High Plains Drifter is a revenge tale with supernatural elements that showcases Clint Eastwood's ability to evoke an unsettling stoicism underlaid by a hint of sadism which is usually downplayed in his straightforwardly heroic or even anti-heroic roles. If you've never seen this film, I won't give away its bizarre twist on the "Lone gunman wanders into town, saves townspeople from gang of anarchic bandits" story arc. Suffice it to say that in an era where the western has been deconstructed and weirded within an inch of its life, it's still refreshing to see a film as bleak and unflinchingly nihilistic as this without any sort of ironic or metatheatrical bent.
All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1177. An easy way of seeing how…