It’s hard to imagine, but the king of bad-asses, Mr. Dirty Harry himself, turned 80 yesterday.


Movie critics enjoy tearing down Clint Eastwood, picking apart his movies and his acting ability. They did the same thing to John Wayne, but I’ll gladly take a Wayne or Eastwood movie over anything ever made by John Gielgud, Laurence Olivier, Richard Burton, or most other actors who are consistently ranked among the best.

The man with no name in all those spaghetti westerns would never have lived for eight decades. He’d have gone down in a blaze of glory while in his prime.

Fortunately, Clint Eastwood grew old gracefully and continued making excellent movies. I’ll put Eastwood’s Unforgiven (1992) up against any western ever made.

Movie critics might not agree (screw em!), but I thought his most recent starring role in Gran Torino (2008) was funny and poignant, and Eastwood somehow managed to play a tough guy at 78 without looking pathetic.

It’ll be a sad day when this generation’s John Wayne tips his hat and rides off into the sunset for the last time, but I’ll bet Eastwood does it with class.

Right, punk?


  1. What’s so great about turning 80? I turned 78 a few weeks ago without any fanfare. And for your info, you whippersnapper, we all get better with age, just like great wine.

  2. Happy 80th Birthday Clint
    Enjoyed your movies on TCM on your birthday and the documentary/bio with you talking all of which were enjoyable. Hope you have many more happy, healthy years with your family.

  3. Clint,
    Happy B-Day! In 1966 you turned this country up side down! John Wayne was considered the most american, bravado hero. It is amazing looking back at your life. Especially after The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly was out. America had just seen the greatest legend of all time right before it’s eyes. At that defining moment, I think the world realized that John Wayne would be topped. I sincerely doubt you will ever be topped.

  4. You’ll gladly take an Eastwood movie over anything ever made by Richard Burton? What about “Where Eagles Dare,” starring Clint Eastwood and Richard Burton.