Outlaw Josey Wales [1976]

As both an actor and a director, Clint Eastwood has had a string of unparalleled critical and commercial successes, from his trademark Westerns to the Dirty Harry action films. This set of six Eastwood films captures the actor as both cowboy and cop, from the 1970s to the '90s. Eastwood ventured into new territory with 1971's The Beguiled, a creepy and seductive thriller about an injured Civil War soldier who causes strife at an all-girls school. While there, he tempts an innocent girl (Elizabeth Hartman), and engages in an unnerving battle of the minds with the school headmistress (Geraldine Page, at her tortured best). The same year, Eastwood burst onto screens with Dirty Harry. This action blockbuster introduced the world to Harry Callahan while making waves with its aggressive violence and nonstop thrills. Eastwood himself helmed the vigilante Western The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976) as well as the comedy Bronco Billy (1980), which films show Eastwood at different ends of the cowboy spectrum: a vengeful family man seeking revenge and an amiable traveling showman who runs a Wild West extravaganza, respectively.With his Oscar-winning film Unforgiven, Eastwood showed himself as the master of the revisionist Western, crafting a morally complex tale of Western justice that turns the notion of good guys and bad guys on its head. And he proved he still had star status with the thriller In the Line of Fire, playing an aging FBI agent who takes on a cunning psycho (John Malkovich) determined to assassinate the president. While this selection doesn't feature any Sergio Leone Westerns or Eastwood's later acclaimed dramas, it remains a great snapshot of a long and illustrious career. --Mark Englehart

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