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November 1 - 8, 2002

Directors in Focus
Clint Eastwood: An American Master

Currently in production in the Boston area on an adaptation of Dennis Lehane’s novel Mystic River, the actor-director Clint Eastwood has spent the past thirty years working behind the camera. While he came of age as a filmmaker with the generation of New Hollywood auteurs, Eastwood represents a very different achievement in his singular conjoining of the legacy of Hollywood professionalism with an independent cinema. We acknowledge his current production with this retrospective survey drawn from the HFA collection.


November 1 (Friday) 7pm

Play Misty for Me

Directed by Clint Eastwood
US 1971, 35mm, color, 102 min.
With Clint Eastwood, Jessica Walter

For his directorial debut, Eastwood chose a small-scale thriller that could be shot on location on a modest budget. In an engaging precursor to Fatal Attraction, Eastwood plays an egotistical disc jockey whose philandering leads him into a dangerous relationship with an obsessive listener (Walter).

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November 1 (Friday) 9 pm
November 3 (Sunday) 7 pm

Bird

Directed by Clint Eastwood
US 1988, 35mm, color, 160 min.
With Forest Whitaker, Diane Venora

Eastwood’s lifelong love affair with jazz found its most powerful expression in this stunning biopic on the legendary bebop musician Charlie Parker. Based on the memoirs of Parker’s widow Chan, Bird focuses on the final chapter in Parker’s too-brief life illuminating both the nature of his artistic genius and his singularly unremorseful lifestyle.

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November 2 (Saturday) 7 pm

Bronco Billy

Directed by Clint Eastwood
US 1980, 35mm, color, 116 min.
With Clint Eastwood, Scatman Crothers

 

In one of his finest comedic performances, Eastwood plays a New Jersey shoe salesman who follows his dreams of a life immersed in the lore of the west. As the proud owner of a smalltime traveling Wild West show, Bronco Billy McCoy faces challenges far removed from frontier times. While the film itself fared little better than its fictional counterpart, Bronco Billy was embraced by critics and has remained one of the director’s personal favorites.

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November 2 (Saturday) 9:15 pm

Unforgiven

Directed by Clint Eastwood
US 1992, 35mm, color, 130 min.
With Clint Eastwood, Gene Hackman

Based on a screenplay that reworks elements of the classic revenge western, Unforgiven was shot on location in a remote setting in Western Canada that proved a flawless match for the American frontier of the 1880s. Eastwood plays an ex-gunfighter, lured out of retirement by the chance to redress a brutal assault of a prostitute and to earn some much-needed money for his two children. While a moral ambiguity pervaded the film, Unforgiven went on to become an unprecedented critical and box-office success.

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November 8 (Friday) 7 pm

Sudden Impact

Directed by Clint Eastwood
US 1983, 35mm, color, 117 min.
With Clint Eastwood, Sondra Locke

The link between Eastwood and the generation of Hollywood veterans is made explicit in Sudden Impact, the sequel that he directed of his popular Dirty Harry character. The plot revolves around a series of gruesome homicides (referred to by one detective as a ".38 caliber vasectomy") in a film which is perhaps best remembered for Eastwood’s signature line, "Go ahead, make my day."

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November 8 (Friday) 9:15 pm

White Hunter, Black Heart

Directed by Clint Eastwood
US 1990, 35mm, color, 110 min.
With Clint Eastwood, Jeff Fahey

In this vibrant adaptation of Peter Viertel’s fictionalized account of his experience as a screenwriter on John Huston’s production of The African Queen, Eastwood vividly recreates the ethos of a bygone era of macho swagger set against the contrasting backdrops of the African jungle and the no less deadly arena of Hollywood.

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