Sunday, April 17, 2016

Unforgiven - Movie Review

William Munny (Clint Eastwood) was a bad man. But his marriage to a good woman cured all his ills and he turned into a pig farmer. His wife dies and he lives a straight life with his two young children in penury.

In a town called Big Whiskey, far away from his Kansas, a crime takes place. Two young cowboys cut up a whore in a whorehouse badly. The sheriff Little Bill (Gene Hackman) lets the two off without even a whipping - and lets the owner of the whorehouse trade ponies for the damages he suffered. The whores are unhappy with the verdict and the way the girl is treated like property. They collect money to announce a reward of 1000 dollars for anyone who kills the two.

Word gets around. A young fellow named Schofield Pete tries to recruit Munny for the job. Munny refuses initially, but he realises that he needs the money and he recruits his old partner Ned Logan (Morgan Freeman). Both Munny and Ned are retired but they can make out the kid is green and does not know the ropes. Worse, he can't see beyond 50 meters. So we have two retired and rusty old men and one young chap who cannot see nor shoot properly.

The village is now attracting mercenaries in search of the prize. But the sheriff will have none of it. He badly beats up English Bob, the first of the mercenaries and sets an example for the rest. But Munny is slowly getting warmed up. First he bumps off one kid. The other cowboy's friends catch hold of Ned who was leaving the two - not having the stomach for killing anymore. Meanwhile Munny and the kid bump off the second cowboy and collect the money from the whores.

When he hears of the second cowboy's death Sheriff Little Bill kills Ned in custody. Munny who hasn't touched a drop of liquor since he went straight gulps down some when he is told that his friend Ned is dead. He walks into a packed bar, in his real incarnation, murderer of children and women, of officials, and kills pretty much anyone who challenges him - including Little Bill. Then he roars off into the night saying that if he ever hears of anyone cutting up women he will be back.

There's a lovely scene when the cut up whore cares for Munny when he down with fever. After he recovers she asks him if he wants a free one, then realises that he might not want a disfigured one like her, and offers others. Munny says that if he ever wanted a free one he would like her but he cares too much for his wife to do anything like that. I hoped he might take her off to his pig farm when he went back to Kansas but he just goes off. The problem with watching westerns is that you start to talk and think like them. Clint Eastwood directed the movie and acted as Munny. The bar gunfight is brilliantly shot. Overall, time well worth. 

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