The Clint Eastwood has bolstered just about every job he has portrayed, raising them from monotony to some of the most badass jobs ever. Let’s review some of his more notable ”jobs.” As a cop… Dirty Harry, and his co-star the 44 Magnum, inspires every young man to want to become a cop that ends rapist / murderer’s lives. As a street fighter… Philo in Any Which Way You Can (previous Manly Movie) and his co-star Orangutan, Clyde, embarrass even a Guile-level street fighter. As boxing coach… Frankie Dunn in Million Dollar Baby, he coached a girl boxer (yes, a girl) and was a tough bastard to her even after she was breathing through a straw. But in this week’s Manly Movie, Clint takes on an occupation that would seem impossible to improve upon its badass nature. Of course, we are talking about a Marine infantry Gunnery Sergeant. That’s right, we are going to review 1986′s Heartbreak Ridge starring Clint Eastwood. This delectable domination of masculinity combines everything needed for a classic: Marines, Guns, Humor, Bar Fights, and of course destroying the island nation of Grenada.
Plot: Gunnery Sergeant Tom Highway (Eastwood) is officially released from his one night stay in jail for a bar fight. He is informed by the Marines that they are going to transfer him back to his old unit, “Recon.” After an eventful bus trip to the base, Highway realizes that his once storied battalion has fallen into dire straits mostly because of the politicizing of the “New” Marine Corps. He meets his commanding officer who is a serious D-bag and then notices that his new platoon is a rag-tag group of misfits. The men in the platoon hate Highway so much they hire The Swede (Peter Koch, a former NFL defensive end) to rough him up. Rough up Clint? Ha! What does Highway do? He beats the hell out of him, earns the platoon’s respect, and creates a fighting force out of the once pathetic individuals. Highway continues the circumvention of his commanding officer and pursues his ex wife. Eventually, the Marines are called into action to subdue the world super power of Grenada. Highway and his new fighting machine drive into the heart of the defenses and achieve victory. The commanding officer gets fired at the end because the Marine Brass thinks he sucks. The End.
Summary: Great movie and definitely one off the beaten path for Clint. This is a very different movie from his earlier war works like Kelly’s Heroes. Heartbreak Ridge is more overtly funny. For God’s sake, just look at his face on the front cover and tell me that doesn’t look like a man in the mood to giggle. I really don’t think he did much “acting” in this movie. He just walked on the set and played himself the entire time: delivering one-liners, fists, and bullets. What really makes the movie worthy of your five bucks are the secondary characters. Everyone from Lieutenant Ring (Boyd Gaines) to Stitch Jones (Mario Van Peebles), provide the situational humor that drive this movie’s comical element home. It has that Arnold in Kindergarten Cop feel to it. I wish Clint did more of these comedies. Needless to say, on your next trip to Walmart make sure you dive into the $5 DVD bin and pick out a copy of Heartbreak Ridge. If you don’t, Clint will reach out and chokeslam you.
“It’s a Cluster F!@#,”