A former rodeo rider goes to Mexico to find his boss’s son. Minor road movie variant on Eastwood’s ongoing exploration of masculinity and aging. The star is the weak link, being two decades too old for the clunky script. That said, it looks and sounds great, and there’s pleasures along the well-worn way.
Dramatization of a 1960 escape attempt from The Rock. A lean, laconic prison drama with some wry touches, Escape isn’t a standard action/thriller offering, but something more meditative, and all the better for its deliberate pace and careful style. Recommended.
An inadequate security guard becomes the focus of an FBI terrorism enquiry. A stately based-on-a-true-story drama which – despite some clunky telescoping of its story – delivers in character study terms, as well as acknowledging an unconventional hero. Not perfect, but recommended, and with a startling central performance from Paul Walter Hauser.
An elderly man becomes a drugs runner for a cartel. Crime drama based on a true story. Baggy and indulgent in places, but with some charming moments, and a decent lead performance from Eastwood. The script’s the issue; we never quite get to the heart of the character, despite efforts to tell a rounded story.
A grizzled baseball scout takes a road trip with his ambitious lawyer daughter. There’s nothing original in this sports/family/romance hybrid, but everything works fine; a professional job all around. Another Eastwood meditation on ageing, with a fine supporting cast.
A Vietnam veteran pilot is tasked with stealing a high-tech Soviet fighter plane. Slightly clunky Cold War-meets-SF thriller, though with strength in depth in its casting, and with then-groundbreaking visual effects, plus a splendid Maurice Jarre score.
Dirty Harry Callahan – now with a female partner – takes on a terrorist cell holding San Francisco to ransom. Third in the series, and the decline has set in; a straightforward and at times brutal actioner with some moments of cynical humour to redeem it.