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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 25.35%
Average: 9.86%
Pretty Bad: 4.23%
Total Crap: 4.23%

3 reviews, 53 user ratings

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High Plains Drifter
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by Chris Parry

"A seminal western. The genre rarely reaches these heights today."
5 stars

Clint Eastwood was to 70's westerns what John Wayne was to 50's westerns. The be all and end all. In High Plains Drifter, that tradition peaked and refused to return until Eastwood's late 80's masterpiece, Unforgiven. Among the guns and violence and spitoons, Eastwood allows himself to become a hero of hatred. A character who is as quick to rape as he is to shoot bad guys. It was a risky call, would be even riskier today, but Clint pulls it off like a champ.

When a raggedy range-dog rolls into the mining town of Lago, the locals are none too pleased. They don't take kindly to strangers. Thankfully, Clint don't take too kindly to folks who use phrases like "take too kindly". After he kills three menacing thugs, the town is in a quandary. A trio of nasty pieces of work are to be released from prison and they've sworn that Lago will burn. And the three dead guys were the hired guns they had waiting to protect the town.

So when you're looking death in the face, to what lengths do you go to ensure survival? Lago offers it all. Clint can have whatever he wants in the town if he promises to help them defend themselves. So, with the assistance of Mordechai the midget sherrif, Clint sets about taking full advantage.

But what is his game exactly? How does painting the town red and building a picnic table amount to self-defence? The town has more secrets than they'll admit to and nobody is patient enough to go along with this madness much longer…

High Plains Drifter is a fantastic film. It's very 70's, but don't let that sit too highly in your 'reasons to avoid' box. This film is hardcore. Not hardcore as in lots of blood and guts, but more in that it's just plain nasty. Everyone therein is nasty, and the hero is the nastiest man in the flick. Where does he come from? Who is he? Why is he here?

Can't answer those questions, folks. The fun is in finding out the answers yourself. Here's a hint, you won't have them until the movie is over. Great flick.

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originally posted: 06/16/99 01:53:40
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User Comments

8/03/20 morris campbell good western with a touch of the supernatural 4 stars
8/23/13 David Marsden A dull,slow and unlikeable film.Nothing likeable about it. 2 stars
8/24/12 Ed Clint brings the smackdown. Good old fashioned western revenge. 5 stars
12/29/10 W.B.T.Neeley A great, sinister take on the western genre. 5 stars
5/16/10 foster kane IIts certainly different .Bu that doesn't mean its good 2 stars
3/16/10 harry lime Nasty ugly vomit inducing film film 1 stars
9/02/09 good fella Vastly overrated. Not a likable character in the whole film 1 stars
8/05/09 chicken george Pretencious crap.Thank God he finally got it right with Unforgiven 1 stars
7/09/09 art A DEEP WESTERN! 4 stars
6/03/09 B C Chandler Typical of the early zombie eastwood westerns. Later when he learnt to talk films improved 2 stars
11/20/08 Colleen H I'm not a fan of westerns, but this one was tolerable because of Clint Eastwood. 3 stars
10/31/08 tiffany pettey clint eastwood makes any movie he is in good 4 stars
11/13/06 Sugarfoot Not the best western ever, the best movie ever. 5 stars
9/25/06 Keith Watton Good movie, but too much whipcracking under the saloon stuff. 4 stars
6/17/06 Glenda K Lake Clint Eastwood brings you back to the days when Hollywood men were just that, MEN! Not the 5 stars
5/20/06 Jack Sommersby The best Western ever made, and Eastwood's best film, too. 5 stars
5/19/06 mr.mike clint's best 5 stars
3/23/06 John Kucher one eastwood's finest and overlooked gems, was as good as pale rider badba pale rider was 5 stars
3/19/06 MP Bartley Ranks alongside the best of Leone and Unforgiven 5 stars
6/23/05 Eric Rollins Great "Twilight Zone" twist at the end. Classic. 5 stars
4/23/05 Indrid Cold Very bizarre, entertaining western. The equal of the Leone movies. 4 stars
11/19/04 Rodney Hale One of my all-time fav's. Right up there with The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. 5 stars
8/02/04 Yellowjacket Bob Puts a chill near the cockles of my heart every time. Love it. 5 stars
6/15/04 John the closest Clint Eastwood has ever come to make an American "Spaghetti Western" - 4 stars
10/20/03 Alan Rarely is revenge handled quite this well. Just plain mean. 4 stars
7/09/03 Sam Moszynski A little mean spirited, but still a top notch western. 4 stars
1/02/03 mongo the best eastwod movie ever !!!!! ive worn out the tape had to buy it on dvd 5 stars
12/31/02 Jack Sommersby The finest Western ever made. Colorful, comic, and suspenseful. 5 stars
10/24/02 Charles Tatum Mean and overlooked 5 stars
10/14/02 Watcherofthe WheelofTime Great! Eastwood Is Nemesis personified! 5 stars
9/28/02 Sébastien Dion Top notch 5 stars
6/07/02 Joe Levy Good, horrific, fun. But you are still a loser Vidmar! 5 stars
6/01/02 Steve Walker This is a near perfect masterpiece 5 stars
5/31/02 R.W. Welch Clint is a little ornerier than usual but otherwise undistinguished. 3 stars
3/04/02 P. Blevins Sophmoric film, all of the pieces are there for a masterpiece but the final product isn't. 3 stars
10/18/01 kevi waldron Ernest may by the only reviwer who realizes Clint plays the part of a ghost 4 stars
8/09/01 Chuckmole A really good flic. What goes around comes around. 5 stars
5/24/01 Aaron Hanson High Plains Drifter is the dark side of High Noon. If you like Noon, then see Drifter! 4 stars
5/07/01 Desert Eagle just average, nothing more 3 stars
1/12/01 Skip A guy gets his revenge, and that's essentially all there is to this movie. 3 stars
11/28/00 Cristopher Revilla good horror-western, but it was kinda interesting that everybody in that town was so pussy 5 stars
11/15/00 Benjamin Ansin A nasty combination of western and horror! The devil's back in town! 5 stars
8/17/00 Sinan Karasu Best of Eastwood.Attempted remake "Pale Rider" 5 stars
8/16/00 Eddie Bastard Wouldn't call it a perfect film, but it's way interesting. Even today, it really holds up. 5 stars
5/19/00 tank A rare fusion of horror and western. Terrific stuff. 4 stars
10/10/99 SJKelley Fresh, original western. Horror blends with Western. 5 stars
7/03/99 Jukka Nurmi Brilliant depiction of an avenging spirit! 5 stars
6/19/99 Christ Monkey I like Jar Jar. 5 stars
5/19/99 Lucas jackson i like when the devil comes helps the town out and then paints it red and calls it hell 5 stars
2/22/99 little jerry The film that shows what's inside The Man With No Name.Beautifully strange. 5 stars
12/01/98 Silent Rob Pale american imitation of Leones 'Dollars' Trilogy. All flavor, no substance! 3 stars
11/29/98 Carlos Tafur pretty good film, it anticipates the mood of Pale Rider and Unforgiven 4 stars
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  02-Jul-1972 (R)


  02-Feb-1973 (M)

Directed by
  Clint Eastwood

Written by
  Ernest Tidyman

  Clint Eastwood
  Verna Bloom
  Mariana Hill
  Mitch Ryan
  Jack Ging
  Stefan Gierasch

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