High Plains Drifter (VHS, 1998, Widescreen Version)

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Karma With a Six Shooter

Jan 22, 2006 (Updated Jan 22, 2006)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Clint Eastwood's acting and directing, decent story.

Cons:Low budget actors and sets...

The Bottom Line: This one is for fans of westerns and bored guys on Sunday afternoon.


Stranger: You're going to look pretty silly with that knife sticking out of your ass.


Directed by Clint Eastwood
Clint Eastwood as The Stranger


High Plains Drifter 1973


Story / Plot


A stranger shows up in this little hole in the wall town with a bunch paranoid schizophrenics, a horny woman and a midget. It sounds like a logger joke but it’s not. High Plains Drifter is one of the great all time westerns. This is not your normal stranger either, he is as fast as lightning with his pea shooter and he respects no one. The paranoid schizophrenics decide if they can’t kill him, they’ll hire him to kill the other bad guys that are after them. The Stranger doesn’t really care what they have in mind. He rapes the horny woman, makes the midget the town sheriff and paints the town red. Little do the towns people know, he also has a score to settle with the bad guys coming to town. This is a story of retribution. The people of the town of Lago made a mistake that they were going to have to pay for one way or another.


Conclusion

Anyway that’s how I see the story. It’s a simple story of retribution with a little twist at the end. I always like to see bad people get what they have coming to them and they all get it in this odd western. The plot is pretty decent. The acting by Clint Eastwood in the film is typical Eastwood, like it or leave it. I tend to like Clint Eastwood, Cop or Cowboy. On the other hand I don’t care to much for the acting of his cronies. He casts these guys in several of his movies and most of them can’t act. The only film where they do OK, is Every Which Way but Loose as a bunch a dopey Bikers. He figured that out a little later when he started casting guys like Morgan Freeman and Gene Hackman. The acting is OK. The little town is a bit low budget as well. It was clearly built for the movie and it shows. A little more money and some better actors would have made a big difference in this film. However most people are willing to overlook these flaws because Clint Eastwood plays such a good part in the stranger, cowboy. He calls them like he sees them and deals justice.


I have always like Clint Eastwood Spaghetti westerns and I like this one as well. It was one of his first and only his second film as director. I’m certain he didn’t have much money to work with. I believe the brutality in the film is what makes it. You’ll either like it or hate it. I would say it’s definitely more of a guy film. The directing in the film was pretty good. Eastwood deserves a lot more praise than he gets for his film directing. Who else could take a story with ten paranoid schizophrenics, a horny woman, a midget and an ornery cowboy and make it a classic western? I give the High Plains Drifter four of five stars.


Similar Films

Good Bad and The Ugly
A Fist Full Of Dollars
A few Dollars More
The Outlaw Josey Wales
Unforgiven
The Pale Rider


Thanks for the read,

© 2006 Joe McMaster


Recommend this product? Yes

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