The real world’s not mean and violent enough for you? Clint Eastwood’s daughter is here to make your day.
Francesca Eastwood stars in a grim and bloody new western, “Outlaws and Angels,” out in limited release in theaters and via video on demand. (See the trailer below).
Not to give too many spoilers, but people start getting shot almost the minute the opening credits conclude (maybe even before) and the body count rises throughout the film. At least no one dies during the incest scenes.
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“There’s an outlaw and there’s an angel in every character,” said Eastwood. “I feel like the real villain is oppression.”
Other options: the guy who molests his daughters, his religious fanatic wife who enables the abuse, the bank robbers who shoot everyone standing in between them and their loot. Take your pick.
“We shot it like a play,” Eastwood said. “Everyone had to be so on it.”
The movie is to hard watch, given the backdrop of the sniper attacks on police officers in Dallas, the terrorist attack in France, the attempted military coup in Turkey and last month’s nightclub massacre in Orlando. To say nothing of the latest video clips showing police officers shooting unarmed black men to death and the ensuing protests.
But Eastwood is compelling, and her performance is reason enough to sit through two hours of simulated horror as an alternative to what’s airing on cable news these days.
“I loved the character Florence and the transformation she goes through,” she said. “It’s very much the beginning of a new chapter for her life.”
Somehow, amid all the flying bullets and bloodied bodies, writer/director J.T. Mollner works in a love story. Hunky Chad Michael Murray stars as Henry, the head of the bandit brigade, and when the outlaws take a pioneer family hostage for a night, sparks fly figuratively, after all the literal ones, between Henry and Florence.
“I related to being a young woman and feeling things you’ve never felt for the first time,” Eastwood said of her character. “Experiencing things you’ve never experienced before and having it change your life. For her, it’s falling in love. When I finished it I felt very empowered and clearer and more self aware.”
Luke Wilson plays the lawman on the hunt for the bandits, and mainly ambles around in his hat doing good-guy things, like rescuing a traumatized child who’s just witnessed violence. (There’s exactly one moment of levity in entire film. It’s the line uttered by the child, played by Lela Rose Allen, who had a role in “The Homesman” with Tommy Lee Jones and Hilary Swank, which filmed partly in southwest Georgia).
Up next, Eastwood appears in locally filmed “The Vault,” which also happens to involve bank robbers but in a modern setting. She didn’t have a lot of downtime to enjoy Atlanta, but did get to hang out with her brother Scott Eastwood, who has been filming “Fast 8.”
“We were shooting for about a month,” she said. “I got some restaurant recommendations but I never actually got to go to them.”
Here’s hoping her career brings her back to Atlanta for a longer stint – and perhaps a project with a little less blood.