HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Booksmart
Prisoners
Beach Bum, The
Kill Ben Lyk
Into the Mirror
Support the Girls
Werewolf
Little Monsters
Spider-Man: Far from Home
Horrible Histories: The Movie - Rotten Romans
Pentathlon
Anna
Moulin Rouge
Ray & Liz
African Queen, The
Helen Morgan Story, The
Golem, Der
Yentl
Finishing Line, The
Triple Threat
Mysterious Castle in the Carpathians, The
Driven
Planet of the Dinosaurs
Gwen
Big Breadwinner Hog
Thunder Road
Moby Dick
Frankenstein's Great Aunt Tillie
Mad Room, The
Phantom of the Megaplex
Night Sitter, The
Child's Play
Power, The
Midsommar
After Midnight
Dolemite is My Name
Varda by Agnes
Toy Story 4
Master Z: Ip Man Legacy
Man Who Never Was, The
   
 
Newest Articles
We're All In This Together: The Halfway House on Blu-ray
Please Yourselves: Frankie Howerd and The House in Nightmare Park on Blu-ray
Cleesed Off: Clockwise on Blu-ray
Sorry I Missed You: Les Demoiselles de Rochefort on Blu-ray
Silliest of the Silly: Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 1 on Blu-ray
Protest Songs: Hair on Blu-ray
Peak 80s Schwarzenegger: The Running Man and Red Heat
Rock On: That'll Be the Day and Stardust on Blu-ray
Growing Up in Public: 7-63 Up on Blu-ray
Learn Your Craft: Legend of the Witches and Secret Rites on Blu-ray
70s Psycho-Thrillers! And Soon the Darkness and Fright on Blu-ray
Split: Stephen King and George A. Romero's The Dark Half on Blu-ray
Disney Post-Walt: Three Gamechangers
But Doctor, I Am Pagliacci: Tony Hancock's The Rebel and The Punch and Judy Man on Blu-ray
Once Upon a Time in Deadwood: Interview with Director Rene Perez
Shit-Eating Grim: Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom on Blu-ray
Stallone's 80s Action Alpha and Omega: Nighthawks and Lock Up
Python Prehistory: At Last the 1948 Show and Do Not Adjust Your Set on DVD
You Could Grow to Love This Place: Local Hero on Blu-ray
Anglo-American: Joseph Losey Blu-ray Double Bill - The Criminal and The Go-Between
Marvel's Least Loved and Most Loved: Fantastic 4 vs Avengers: Endgame
Battle of the Skeksis: The Dark Crystal Now and Then
American Madness: Sam Fuller's Shock Corridor and The Naked Kiss on Blu-ray
Flight of the Navigator and the 80s Futurekids
Trains and Training: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 13 on DVD
   
 
  Unforgiven Back In The SaddleBuy this film here.
Year: 1992
Director: Clint Eastwood
Stars: Clint Eastwood, Gene Hackman, Morgan Freeman, Richard Harris, Jaimz Woolvet, Saul Rubinek, Frances Fisher, Anna Levine, David Mucci, Rob Campbell, Anthony James, Tara Frederick, Beverley Elliott, Liisa Repo-Martell, Josie Smith
Genre: Western
Rating:  9 (from 2 votes)
Review: The 1880s and in Wyoming, a scandal has created a buzz in the land for word has gotten around that a couple of villains cut up the face of a prostitute (Anna Levine) in revenge for her laughing at one of them when they undressed, and has left her scarred for life. The tale grows in the telling, but the most important aspect to some ears is that the girl's fellow whores have placed a generous bounty on the heads of the criminals, news which mightily annoys the town sheriff Little Bill (Gene Hackman) - yet intrigues retired, reformed gunfighter Bill Munny (Clint Eastwood) who has fallen on hard times.

It could be one of the reasons Unforgiven was so embraced by movie buffs resided in that last dedication after the end credits: "To Sergio and Don", Eastwood paying tribute to the two directors who were so crucial in shaping his career and teaching him the craft which he put to such good use for his own broadening career, of which you could say this film was the ultimate fruition. Certainly Eastwood's generosity and sincerity in that tribute won over a lot of fans who could see where he had taken their lessons to heart in this, fashioning a Western which could have been out of step with the current trends of the nineties, but managed to find a fresh relevancy in its thematically rich story.

The main theme was that violence begets violence, and nobody here was innocent of proving that to be the case, even those who never fired a shot: you could include Munny's kids in that as well, for though they do not expressly ask their father to take up his guns again it is for them he does so, even as it causes him anguish for their late mother had done her best to improve him from the wanton murderer he used to be. Some saw these meditations on the nature of what brings people to violence a muddle, or not quite thought through, but actually in David Webb Peoples's script things are more complex than the black hat vs. white hat yarns that the genre had been regarded as by those who tended to dismiss it.

Famously, Peoples' screenplay had been bought by Eastwood's company many years before, and had been floating around for longer than that, the story going that the star wished to "grow into" the role of an ageing gunfighter rather than film it before he felt it was the right time. But in the early nineties, the problems of police corruption and lawlessness among a disadvantaged public were very much in the headlines: if that factoid was true, then Eastwood displayed quite some nous in adapting it when he did (and didn't even think to consult with Peoples at all in the process). If Little Bill represented that authority taking dangerous lengths to maintain the peace, then Munny was the man driven by social pressures to break that law, and he was not alone as the need for money begins to be supplanted by the desire for vengeance.

You could blame the thugs at the beginning of the film, or the prostitutes (led by Eastwood's then-girlfriend Frances Fisher) for appealing to the greed of the outraged by putting up their savings as reward for the bounty, or Bill for being so selective in his justice that it becomes meaningless, and so it goes on with each character in this chain of sorrow playing their part. Needless to say, with a cast of this calibre the dialogue fairly crackled: you could feel the electricity in the air when the situation grew tense, which was often. Hackman was quite brilliant in one of this best roles, which is saying a lot, Richard Harris made the most of his opportunities as the rival assassin who demonstrates to us the hollow triumph of being famous for attacking people, and Morgan Freeman is the conscience as Munny's old friend who joins up only to be sickened when he realises the implications of murder. Even Jaimz Woolvert as "The Kid" illustrated how youth was drawn into this hell through bluff, bluster and arrogance; really, there was so much to analyse it was worth simply recalling just how gripping and menacing Unforgiven could be. Music by Lennie Niehaus.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2026 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Clint Eastwood  (1930 - )

Becoming a superstar in the late 1960s gave Clint Eastwood the freedom to direct in the seventies. Thriller Play Misty for Me was a success, and following films such as High Plains Drifter and The Outlaw Josey Wales showed a real talent behind the camera as well as in front of it. He won an Oscar for his downbeat Western Unforgiven, which showed his tendency to subvert his tough guy status in intriguing ways. Another Oscar was awarded for boxing drama Million Dollar Baby, which he also starred in.

Also a big jazz fan, as is reflected in his choice of directing the Charlie Parker biopic Bird. Other films as director include the romantic Breezy, The Gauntlet, good natured comedy Bronco Billy, Honkytonk Man, White Hunter Black Heart, The Bridges of Madison County, OAPs-in-space adventure Space Cowboys, acclaimed murder drama Mystic River, complementary war dramas Flags of Our Fathers and Letters from Iwo Jima and harrowing true life drama Changeling. Many considered his Gran Torino, which he promised would be his last starring role (it wasn't), one of the finest of his career and he continued to direct with such biopics as Jersey Boys, American Sniper and The Mule to his name.

 
Review Comments (1)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Enoch Sneed
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
  Rachel Franke
Paul Shrimpton
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: