The Outlaw Josey Wales

"Not a hard man to track...he leaves dead men wherever he goes." - Fletcher

release year: 1975
genre: western
viewing setting: home Bluray 5/25/14 and home DVD, 10/19/09 and 11/21/06 and 3/4/01 and other times in the past

synopsis: Missouri farmer Josey Wales loses his family and home to murdering Confederate soldiers, and becomes a killing machine hell-bent on revenge.

impressions: This was a good mix of cool action and drama. At first, Josey kills everyone who tries to kill or capture him, or otherwise gets in his way; then he takes the role of protector for a collection of random people. The backdrop of the Civil War (and the violence and treachery that came with it) is well-done and realistic.

things to watch for: The way Josey spits tobacco juice on a wide variety of things (salesman, scorpion, guy he just shot, dog (twice.)

something this movie has that no other movie has: A dog who fetches firewood.

acting: This is Clint Eastwood's movie all the way. Though it's never really explained how he went from farmer to lethal gunfighter, I found that I didn't really care. Chief Dan George is good as a quiet, noble old Indian who befriends Josey. Bill McKinney and John Vernon are former enemies who end up chasing Josey down. Paula Trueman is a stubborn old woman who knows when it's time to fight. Sondra Locke (who I despise in all movies) is a childlike waif of a girl who says some silly things but ends up firing a rifle just like everyone else.

final word: One of the best westerns ever made.

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