Clint Eastwood, the one who never stopped spinning

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(AFP) – A 90 years, he still spinning … Among the last giants of Hollywood cinema, Clint Eastwood has embodied America on the screens for six decades. And nothing seems to be able to stop it.

“Cry Macho” hits theaters on Wednesday and no one can swear that it will be the last film from the dean of American cinema legends, to the career that began in the years 1950 with small roles, before moving on to directing.

The Clint Eastwood who appears on the screen certainly has marked features, a stiff gait, but that does not prevent him from getting back on his horse and punching an opponent, as in good old days.

And with its western vibe, its hero figure on the comeback and its exaltation of moral principles, “Cry Macho” could sum up a part of the life of this extraordinary actor and director, often criticized for his very right-wing values.

Born in 1930, Clint Eastwood has over sixty films to his name, some of which have won the biggest awards (“Ruthless” in 1976, Oscars for best director star and best film, just like “Million Dollar Baby” in 2005).

– Right in his boots –

The one who went to the realization in 1971 with the thriller “A thriller in the night”, rubbed shoulders with all the genres that have written the history of Hollywood : western (“Josey Wales outlaw” 1976), melody (“On the road to Madison”, 1995), or war films (“Memoirs of our fathers / Letters from Iwo Jima”, 2005).

As an actor, he rose to fame over the years 24 with Sergio Leone and his cult trilogy “For a handful of dollars” “And for a few dollars more” / “The good, the bad and the ugly “. The legend of the anti-hero, with a minimalist game and enduring long silences thanks to his charisma, his penetrating gaze in metallic blue and his dry silhouette of 1, 91 m, was born.

In his films, he imprinted the themes that are dear to him – the loneliness of an individual against the group, loyalty or the primacy of truth – he who is wary of fashions and studio diktats. Some come from his childhood spent in a working-class environment in Oakland (California).

Among his claimed influences, John Ford or John Huston, and also Don Siegel, from whom he retained the habit of filming quickly, which allows him to not exceed neither the schedule nor the budgets.

Siegel notably directed him as a policeman-vigilante in “Inspector Harry” ( 1971), a character who earned him the charge of being a fascist. Because Clint Eastwood, who has also been considered a warmonger for “American Sniper”, is used to controversies, in the face of which he remains straight in his cowboy boots.

– “I wonder if that’s enough” –

Conservative, close to the Republican Party, this father of eight children has always played with the ambiguity of his “react” character, racist and warmonger. Offscreen, the actor marked by the early death of his father from a heart attack, has never smoked, has practiced meditation and does not like firearms.

His convictions were rather to be found on the side of a very American political tradition, that of individual freedoms.

For the past ten years, Clint Eastwood has not slowed down , the pandemic barely disturbing his metronome rhythm of one film per year – some of whom have been crushed by the critics.

Since “Million Dollar Baby”, he has consistently embodied heroes aging and had announced that he was retiring as an actor after his role in “Gran Torino” in 2006 … but he has since reappeared in front of the camera three times, for “Une nouvelle chance” (2012), “La Mule” (2018) and “Cry macho”.

To the Los Angeles Times who asked him in September about his age, he replied: “Why do I keep working over 90 years ? Are people going to throw tomatoes at me? I’ve gotten to the point where I wonder if that’s enough. But not to the point where I’ve decided that’s enough “.

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