Unforgiven - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Unforgiven Reviews

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½ September 9, 2017
Clint Eastwood made a career out of being the tough good guy who kills the bad guys. Now, in this movie, he plays a tough good guy who does a lot of soul-searching and opining and pontificating and philosophizing and talking and talking about killing... and then he kills all the bad guys. Morgan Freeman has the amazing role-of-a-lifetime as the black sidekick to the white lead character. The black sidekick, of course, gets killed ('cause he's black) so that the white good guy can transform into the bad-ass one-man-army most guys wish they could be. Anyway, I enjoyed the film for the most part.
½ September 8, 2017
Masterful western/drama, one of the greatest westerns I've ever seen!
August 20, 2017
Eastwood's starring experience as the Man with No Name is a qualification for him to helm and star in a western that de-ages the genre's formula to a recipe with crooked laws, generational outlaws and behavioral nuisances to culminate the definition with few counterarguments as it seems. As that's the genuine route through prior expectancy, it's obviously an A-rated entertainment whilst charismatically engaging from its stance and substance, with likable, very well-performed characterization of conflicting sides and heated action. Finally, it came to mind that it's a probable studying example of potentiality being predicted as an indication of likelihood towards the Best Picture title based on the premise and developed obstacles. (A-)

(Full review TBD)
½ August 17, 2017
A nicely paced Western with some fantastic acting, but Unforgiven has a few criticisable traits to it. Scenes which don't serve a purpose to the film, a remarkably short shooting contest, hints of romance with no follow-up and some major dramatic character changes which seem glossed over. A fantastic film overall, but certainly one not without flaws.
½ August 16, 2017
Unforgiven is widely considered one of the best, if the best western of all time, even making it to #98 on the AFI's top 100 films list. This is all especially surprising since this is essentially an anti western, it blurs the lines between good and evil, and typical character personalities, while never glorifying violence like the westerns before it. It's absolutely brilliant.

Clint Eastwood directed, produced, and starred in this film, and if it wasn't for this film we may have never seen his skill behind the camera be recognized. There's nothing absolutely amazing about this films direction, but there is some solid cinematography that provide some beautiful shots, but the most impressive of Eastwood's direction is the way he sets up mood. He effectively conveys a sense of time, and place in the old west very well, giving the viewer an uneasy sense of isolation, and a haunting atmosphere in the barely populated towns, and long stretches of desert.

The performances are also overall top notch with Eastwood doing a fine job playing William Munny, with his typical straight faced, tough, no nonsense persona, but with a bit more depth this time. Constantly carrying baggage from his past that's slowly eating him up inside, while still trying to be a good father, and a good man. Gene Hackman is also a stand out, playing the hypocritical sheriff Little Bill Daggett. Daggett is a complex, hypocritical, morally ambiguous character. Trying to keep his little town safe, building a house to retire in, and constantly condemning violence he frequently resorts to, to feel powerful, and Hackman does a great job making him feel human. Morgan Freeman also does a typically nice job playing Munny's old friend Ned.

The script for Unforgiven was actually written in the 70's during the massive popularity of westerns, but was never used for twenty years. This isn't a surprise considering while other westerns were busy glorifying violence, Unforgiven was ready to show the audience the psychological trauma it really inflicts. Eastwood was even skeptical about doing the film because of how different it was from his other westerns, and was worried it would've left a bad stain on his career. When he officially started working on Unforgiven the script wasn't even changed a bit, because even after 20 years it still had an intriguing, fresh quality to it.

Unforgiven is a film that was just made at the right time. It blurs the line between standard good, and evil, leaving only the morally grey behind. It's a brutal, dark, and a heartfelt goodbye to the western genre from one its most popular actors. It's also an interesting look at what one of Eastwood's typical western characters would look like 20 years down the road, and is an overall reflection of his work as an actor in the genre, giving it a nice, almost tragic personal feeling. If you're a fan of any kind of western, I highly recommend you watch it.
August 12, 2017
The good do the bad while the bad do the good
August 11, 2017
Quite simply the best Western movie ever made. The cast and acting are phenomenal, and the transformation of Clint Eastwood's character as the plot develops is fantastic. This is right up there with my favourite movies of all time.
August 10, 2017
Back-handed the western genre and put it in its place.
½ August 6, 2017
Sometimes you look at these movies that are super Hollywood and Oscar baity and assume they're overrated. Yeah, no. This one's amazing. As good a follow-up on the Man With No Name as could be made.
½ August 6, 2017
"Everybody has it coming, kid." 25th anniversary at Film Forum.
July 19, 2017
One of the greatest films ever made.
July 14, 2017
An anti-hero cowboy is going to a questionable job, and that's just what he does. Clint Eastwood has always been the fastest gun in the west, but this is where he does it in a unheroic manner.
June 19, 2017
Eastwood's meditation on violence and the western is a hard-hitting, sweeping, beautifully crafted and haunting experience. Every performance is a powerhouse, but Hackman's Little Bill steals the show.
June 11, 2017
Western films are not for everyone. Many, if not most, of them are packed full of dated notions as to what it means to be honourable, be the best killer, be a man. I would be quicker to recommend Unforgiven to people who don't like Westerns (at least for the reasons I mentioned) than to people who do. From a distance, it may seem like a modern Western which studies the moral compass of when it is morally right to use the deadly force of gunfire. In depth, not quite. That theme is actually pretty common in classic Westerns. Unforgiven argues that such questions are not even relevant, once the moment comes to use gunfire. The primary characters in the movie -- played with great sympathy by Clint Eastwood (also the director), Morgan Freeman, and Gene Hackman -- are esteemed shooters well past their prime. They are each in situations where they would most like to settle down and be away from the violence of their past, but for one reason or another, they have found themselves ready to kill. Eastwood and Freeman, partners in crime, try to rationalize their deeds for justice, while Hackman, the "antagonist", tries to rationalize his deeds for peace. Overtime, the violence desensitizes from a intense perspective of the shooter -- "Can you live with yourself, if you pull the trigger?" -- to ruthless apathy, patiently and effectively paced by director Clint Eastwood. In the film Unforgiven, whatever it means to be a "man", it has long been too late for anyone to walk away in the "right." All that counts is who is lucky enough to walk away at all, and get the chance to continue walking. If you see classic Westerns as the testaments for true heroes, you may not like how Eastwood and screenwriter David Webb Peoples try to shatter those images. For everyone else, you're in for a treat.
May 31, 2017
Still my all time favorite western. Whereas the Spaghetti Westerns had the feel of epic myth, this one feels downright realistic. In some ways it is a sobering antidote to the portrayal of violence in those films. What was most remarkable about this movie is how powerful an anti-violence message it conveys by how the violence is portrayed. The character Munny's quote right before the climax about killing struck a deep philosophical cord within me that has stuck with me ever since. This is such a rare thing to come out of a movie. The acting is great in this movie as was the cast. The storyline was great as well. The pace was reasonable with a thrilling ending. If you like drama and violence, gritty realism, immersion into a western period piece, a deeply thought provoking exploration of the negative aspects of violence, some unexpected twists and turns with a thrilling climax, and some great acting by a great cast, then I highly recommend this movie. I have watched it at least 3x.
May 23, 2017
Good flick although maybe not the classic it's being made out to be!
May 21, 2017
Happened to find this movie by chance. Beautiful masterpiece by Clint Eastwood.. Typical western cowboy movie and excellent performances by Morgan Freeman & Clint Eastwood.. Shows the emotional journey & varying perspectives of few killers - 2 experienced ones and an amateur / beginner.
The experienced killers struggle with their emotions to kill people (used to be arrogant and killed people for fun in their youth); they do not gloat with glee on the number of kills they have done so far - rather they are filled with remorse and fear.
Whereas the amateur has never killed a soul so far but boasts of having killed 5 people (when truly his eyesight / aim is quite bad). Surprising to find a cameo by the first Dumbledore Richard Harris in this movie :) (can't imagine him in any other role) !!
April 16, 2017
The reason I'm not a fan of westerns is because of how dull they look and feel, and how pushed the heroism angle is. Unforgiven breaks all the cliches Stagecoach and The Big Trail cursed upon its genre. This movie is beautiful and gritty, a haunting tale of how violence affects a person and dehumanizes them.
April 11, 2017
Okay first things first, I realize that that the cowboy did a really awful thing by cutting up that girls face, but I really didn't feel like death was an acceptable punishment for him. He should've gotten the shit kicked out for sure, but killing him?
English Bob seemed like a very cool character but in the end his story didn't lead anywhere and I was very disappointed in that area of the film. Other than that, a lot of the plot moved far too slow for my liking, and I found myself very bored with this otherwise competent and mildly interesting film
April 8, 2017
Why this film has 95% is beyond me.. It is sooooooo boring. In all fairness, I didn't watch the whole thing - I fast forwarded A LOT of the scenes, so maybe if I tie myself to a chair and force myself to watch it, i would realize it wasn't that bad. But for me to fast forward the scenes kind of mean it sucks at the beginning.
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