Clint Eastwood stars, produces and directs The Mule, which is available now from Warner Brothers. Inspired by a true story, the film is a huge step up from the iconic legend’s previous film, the lackluster, The 15:17 to Paris.
Eastwood stars as Earl, a Korean vet, and horticulturalist who gets mixed up in the drug trade when he agrees to drive packages and make a little extra money. He discovers the truth not just about his job, but about his life and long neglected family as well.
Playing as a bit of a crime drama, Eastwood has stacked the cast with some big names, his daughter Alison Eastwood, Micheal Pena, Dianne Wiest, Taissa Famiga, Laurence Fisburne, Andy Garcia and Bradley Cooper.
Sure there are some ‘teaching’ moments that are in the film to tick the boxes of “I’m not one of the bad Republicans, I’m just old” that has rather clouded Eastwood’s image of late, but the story is really quite engaging, and it’s a delight to see Eastwood on the screen again.
Earl has never had a ticket, or been involved in a traffic stop, his licence is clean, and being old, he seems to be able to travel unnoticed. But the more runs he makes, the more notice the cartel he works for takes notice of him, and begins to watch him.
Cooper plays a DEA agent, Colin Bates who is working the cartel, and is attempting to find their delivery chain… and he’s closing in on Eastwood.
Eastwood working with a script by Nick Schenk (based on the New York Times Magazine article by Sam Dolnick, is able to balance the family drama with the crime, the humor with the pathos, and deliver a solid and enjoyable film that shows that Eastwood has still got it.
As Earl looks at his life, and the way he has impacted (and neglected) his family he begins to realize, as too many of us do too late, that it is your life, not your job, your family, those you love and how you treat them that matter.
Eastwood is a master of the craft, and the film works. And it’s great to see him putting himself out there as an actor again. It’s always great to see him on screen. The film rests easily on his shoulders, and it captivates, all because of him, and his cast and crew.
The extras rounding out the blu-ray include a short featurette on the making of the film, and a music video by Toby Keith.
The Mule is available from Warner Brotthers on DVD and blu-ray now!