The Complete Clint Eastwood

From July 9 – 27 The Film Society of Lincoln Center will present “The Complete Clint Eastwood,” a comprehensive retrospective of all films directed by triple threat actor, director, producer, Clint Eastwood. The series will also showcase signature Eastwood performances in films directed by Sergio Leone and Don Siegel. On July 10 Eastwood himself will make a live appearance, via Skype, for a Q&A session following a screening of “A Fistful of Dollars” (1964). On July 9 critic, author and director Richard Schickel will present his documentary “The Eastwood Factor.” After the screening Schickel will sign copies of his book “Clint: A Retrospective.”

Richard Peña Program Director for The Film Society of Lincoln Center, said “Few American artists have ranged as far and wide across American life and history as Clint Eastwood.” Peña went on to say that, “with each passing year his stature as one of the vital voices in our cinema becomes more affirmed, and we are delighted to offer New Yorkers the chance to savor his great achievement by offering this complete retrospective of his work as a director…”

Three of the series’ films were shown at press screenings. It was a pleasure to see them on the big screen in the Film Society’s very comfortable Walter Reade Theatre, where the retrospective will take place.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966) is the series’ jewel in the crown, especially since the restored three hour director’s cut will be screened. I have TGTBTU on DVD but never miss the rare opportunity to see it on a big screen. Leone’s innovative use of the wide screen, close-ups, long shots, brilliant editing and Ennio Morricone score are iconic and jaw dropping. Eastwood, reprising his role as “The Man with No Name,” and co-star Lee Van Cleef are the epitome of cool as “The Good” and “The Bad” respectively. That having been said, and while I acknowledge that this is Eastwood’s festival, this movie belongs to “The Ugly” Eli Wallach. Wallach’s funny, scheming, amoral Mexican bandit Tuco steals every one of his scenes…at gunpoint. Not to be missed.

Escape From Alcatraz (1979) is a good, straight forward, suspenseful prison drama, directed by Siegel, about the only three inmates to have ever escaped from the notorious prison. It is obvious that author Stephen King and director Frank Darabount were strongly influenced by this film in the creation of their two prison dramas “The Shawshank Redemption” (1994) and “The Green Mile” (1999).

Breezy (1973) is an interesting anomaly in the Eastwood canon. Eastwood directed this quiet, affecting May-December romance starring William Holden as a middle-aged man who falls for the titular hippie (Kay Lenz).

For schedule and ticket information please visit


About unpaidfilmcritic

Up until 2009 Seth Shire spent nearly two decades in the New York film industry as a post production supervisor of feature films. Highlights include working on the films of Martin Scorsese, James Toback and Spike Lee. Since leaving the film industry Seth has expanded into new and varied areas where he has found a great deal of satisfaction. Seth currently teaches in the Sociology Department of CUNY Queens College. His courses include "Mass Media and Popular Culture," "Introduction to Sociology," and "Sociology of Cinema" where he is a very popular teacher. Seth is also the film critic for "Town & Village," a Manhattan weekly newspaper, a position he has held for the past six years. Seth gives back to his community through volunteer teaching at Manhattan's "The Caring Community," a center for senior citizens, where he teaches a very popular course on documentaries called "The Golden Age of the Documentary. In the fall of 2010 Seth taught "Critical Reading and Writing" at Parsons School of Design. He has also taught "Cinema Studies" at the New York Film Academy. Seth lives in Stuyvesant Town, in Manhattan.

Posted on July 3, 2010, in Feature Articles, New and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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