When Cry Macho releases on September 17, the legendary Clint Eastwood will make another return to the big screen – and the movie looks like it will be his best in 13 years. Eastwood has been a household name for decades, first breaking out via Sergio Leone’s “Spaghetti Westerns” before starring in any number of classic movies like Dirty Harry, which took after John Wayne rejected it. In more recent years, he’s been acting in and/or directing projects like American Sniper, The Mule, and Richard Jewell.
Soon, in addition to being the film’s director, the 91-year-old will return in Cry Macho as a former rodeo star – who’s implied to be something of a has-been who has turned to drink – named Mike Milo. The trailer imparts a dark and melancholic vibe while fleshing out the basic storyline. Milo journeys to Mexico in search of a friend’s son (Rafael, played by Eduardo Minett), who he needs to bring back to the States. Of course, the task is not that straightforward and Western-style violence is sure to ensue.
Cry Macho may end up being Clint Eastwood’s best film in the last 13 years. In 2008, he starred in and directed the moving, slow-burn drama Gran Torino. He played a crotchety widower named Walt Kowalski, and his role fit the “get off my lawn” (a famous quote of his from the film) character archetype he embodies so well. Since then, he’s mostly stuck to directing. Even when he’s returned to acting, the films were a far cry from the material he was working with on Gran Torino. Cry Macho appears to have many similarities to the 2008 movie in its tone, how Mike is depicted and the overall plot. It seems like another gritty, Clint Eastwood-starring story that orbits around an older man haunted by his past and partaking in atonement for his past sins and regrets. Like Kowalski, Milo seems gruff and spunky. Also, just like the way Kowalski becomes a mentor to teenage neighbor, Thao, it’s looking like Milo will bond with Rafael while retrieving him from Mexico – amid the looming threat of violence lurking around the corner.
At this point, though it looks promising, it’s tough to say whether or not Cry Macho will be a great movie. Judging by the trailer alone, it seems like it will surpass Eastwood’s most recent efforts like 2018’s The Mule – though that project was quite well-received – in quality. There appears to be a certain sense of sentimentality and human connection within it (especially within the context of his complicated link with Rafael), but it also looks as though this Clint Eastwood-directed movie will have more have bite and be akin to Gran Torino or his 1992 Western masterpiece Unforgiven.
Cry Macho has all the makings of a solid movie and possibly even one of the better dramas to come out of 2021. Not only that, but it will usher Clint Eastwood back out onto the big screen in a film that’s classically “him.” It appears to be something of an epilogue to his cowboy screen persona, so hopefully, it will prove a fitting swansong for his time in the genre.