No White Hats | Sojourners

No White Hats

JUDY COODE'S criticisms of Clint Eastwood's Unforgiven puzzled me greatly ("On The Beat," December 1992). She states the movie has an identity crisis, apparently because it is neither a traditional shoot-em-up nor a literal portrayal of pacifism. But that's what makes this film so powerful. It ruthlessly examines the nature of violence: what drives men and women to it and what its moral consequences are. No one in the movie wears a white hat. The reformed William Munny seems a genuinely good man, but desperate circumstances reacquaint him with the grim and pathetic reality of killing.

As for the pacifist influence of his wife: It lasted until, in grief and rage, he hit the whiskey bottle again. This is certainly no anti-gun control platform. All too sadly it is reality, but Eastwood paints a brutally honest and haunting portrait of it.

Daniel Reed Miller

Seattle, Washington

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