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The Cinema of Clint EastwoodChronicles of America$
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David Sterritt

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780231172011

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231172011.001.0001

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Pros and Cons

Pros and Cons

The Case For/Against Clint

(p.7) Chapter One Pros and Cons
The Cinema of Clint Eastwood

David Sterritt

Columbia University Press

This chapter begins by looking at some of the arguments supporting the idea that the overall consistency of Eastwood's work shows him to be an authentic auteur. Kent Jones, a comedy writer, recognizes Eastwood as an auteur when he says the filmmaker's major films are variations on the recurring theme of appearance versus reality; as does American film historian Richard Schickel when he says Eastwood is drawn to themes ‘that have to do with how the past impinges on the present’. However, some critics hold that Eastwood is not an auteur or even a decent cinema craftsman, much less a well-spoken thinker with worthwhile things to say in his films. These critics, including Pauline Kael, Richard Eder, and Judith Crist, remark that there is a lack of affect and absence of charisma in Eastwood's performances.

Keywords:   authentic auteur, Kent Jones, appearance, reality, Richard Shickel, cinema craftsman, Pauline Kael, Richard Eder, Judith Crist

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