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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic comes to HD
I have always had a weak spot for westerns and love the westerns of Clint Eastwood and as such this has always been a favourite of mine, the sub text of the supernatural setting (is he the ghost of the slain marshal or his brother) would be worked into his later work (Pale Rider)to better effect.
I am watching this while typing and I can honestly say I am very very...
Published 19 months ago by S. R. Williams

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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Worth Watching
High Plains Drifter is a cracking western not for the easily offended,it definately deserves its 18 rating.Clints performance as the Stranger is excellent,a rather nasty hero to say the least.The film flows well throughout and is well directed by Clint himself.Not Eastwoods best but well worth a watch.
Published on 16 Oct. 2008 by P. G. Luckley


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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic comes to HD, 16 Sept. 2013
By 
S. R. Williams (London) - See all my reviews
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I have always had a weak spot for westerns and love the westerns of Clint Eastwood and as such this has always been a favourite of mine, the sub text of the supernatural setting (is he the ghost of the slain marshal or his brother) would be worked into his later work (Pale Rider)to better effect.
I am watching this while typing and I can honestly say I am very very impressed, you can see this has been remastered and not just upscaled ala Two Mules or Joe Kidd (both of which are a vast improvement over their DVD counterparts) the picture is as sharp as you would expect, the colour vibrant, the scenes set at night stand out and are pin sharp (a problem with DVDs and some Blu Rays) the sound has been remastered into 5.1, which does sound clearer than before but doesn't make any real use of the back speakers so do not buy this expecting your cinema surround system to get a work out as it will not.
what you are buying this for is the vastly improved picture quality and this delivers on all counts.
For a product being labelled as a 40th anniversary edition you will be a little disappointed with the extras, or rather the lack there off. This edition has a solitary trailer. I would like more Clint Eastwood movies to come with some outstanding extras or even a retrospective documentary or two but to be honest they have always been a little lacking in that department but as I want my movies on the best ever format with the best possible picture and sound I am more than happy with this release. I am not going to review this movie what is the point High Plains Drifter has been out there for 40 years so you would have seen it in one format or the other.
The only real question being is this worth getting again and I have to give a resounding yes put your hand in your pocket replace your old DVD or VHS you will not be disappointed, enjoy I am.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Supernatural Western?, 16 May 2013
By 
Spike Owen "John Rouse Merriott Chard" (Birmingham, England.) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: High Plains Drifter [DVD] (DVD)
A lone gunman with no name and seemingly with no past, rides into the dusky town of Lago. The residents of Lago at first view the stranger with suspicion, but when news that some outlaws that are out for blood are on their way to town, they ask the stranger for his help.

This is Clint Eastwood's first Western film that he directed, and it's clear and evident that the guy not only loves the genre that made his name, he also knows what makes it work. Obviously having worked for Sergio Leone, Eastwood was making notes because High Plains Drifter oozes the mythical aura of many of Leone's finest genre offerings. To which, with thanks, the result is one of the best offerings in the 70s for the Oater enthusiast.

The film opens with our mysterious drifter slowly coming out of the beautiful sprawling haze and into Lago, it's ethereal, then there's just the sound of the horse breathing and the clop of its hooves that can be heard (the sound mix here is incredible), it's a gloriously mysterious opening that sets the tone perfectly. Yet Eastwood is just toying with us though, for a quick jolt of sex and violence snaps us out of the beatific warmth and into a quite hauntingly cold and morally challenged place. From here on in the stranger will demand all manner of odd things from the residents of Lago, he seems to be toying with them and revelling in their discomfort, with Lago quickly resembling an arid hellhole. You see, Lago has a dark secret, and our mysterious stranger has a purpose, and it's this purpose that makes High Plains Drifter an intriguing and gripping experience.

A well known fact now is that the great man of the genre, John Wayne, wrote Eastwood to strongly complain about his harsh vision of the West, one can only think the Duke failed to grasp the post Vietnam feel of a 70s made Western. It's a great directorial effort from Eastwood, more so when you marry up his acting performance to his directorial duties. Very much the perfect role, it lets Eastwood accentuate his rugged Western leanings. Eastwood would direct the similarly themed Pale Rider in the 80s and then the genre crown topper Unforgiven in the 90s. A Western great in each decade? Well that will always be debatable, but what we do know is that the Western genre was considerably lucky to have had such a man to keep the genre going for the newer interested wanderers into the Wild West.

Beautifully photographed (Bruce Surtees) on the shores of Mono Lake, California, it's a film pungent with sex, sadism, retribution and risks. High Plains Drifter is mystical and magnificent and essential Western fare. 9/10
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'IS THE PRICE TOO HIGH ?, 20 Sept. 2013
By 
rbmusicman (U.K) - See all my reviews
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This is screen legend 'Clint Eastwood's' second movie as a director.
in this he plays his familiar role as the gunman with no name riding
into town to raise 'HELL !'
after a long ride he arrives in 'LAGO' all he appears to want is a
quiet drink, a shave and a bath, however three gun-toting locals have
no intention of allowing the stranger to do so.
the problem is soon resolved.
the town has another issue looming, they need to hire a gun to protect
them against three gunmen they'd had put away who are now being released
from prison, the sheriff isn't up to the job, there's only one candidate,
the stranger, who unbeknown to the town folk has his own agenda.
are they are willing to agree to all his demands ?
The man with no-name demands that they prepare to welcome the gunmen and
tells them what they need to do.
but...when it comes too, have they the courage to do so ?
though not his best western it is typical in as much as he plays the
part of the stranger with a swift draw.
some gritty action sequences....a must for 'Clint Eastwood' fans.
Pleased to say that unlike many of the 'Blu-ray' transfers of his films
the picture quality is superior to many of his recent Blu-ray' releases
I've purchased.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Urghh, He Sure Had A Lot Of Blood Left In Him, Didn't He...?", 26 July 2008
By 
This review is from: High Plains Drifter [DVD] (DVD)
'High Plains Drifter' is my very favourite Eastwood movie (and that's saying something). I especially like the dark humour and ambiguity, but in truth, there's not much I don't like.

You just know something bad is gonna happen the minute you see him appear through the desert heat-haze in the eerie title sequence, and by the time the film ends, with the same shot in reverse (a la 'the Searchers') something bad has!

In between, we're treated to much violence, sexism, adultery, hypocrisy and general wretchedness from the Lago townsfolk, and they're the victims!
These people are dire, far worse than the actual villains, (who are gold-star nasty in a traditional sense.) they stood and watched as their sheriff, the only honest character in the film, was whipped to death in the street.

In essence, 'High Plains Drifter' is a cross between 'Witchfinder General', 'High Noon' and 'the Omen', only with lashings more unpleasantness. The main difference; there's people to cheer for in those films - there's no-one here. Even the 'hero' is a cruel, merciless killer, who is himself in no moral position to deliver salvation OR retribution to the cowering townsfolk.

And who is he? The murdered sheriff's avenging kin? His ghost? The devil? The plot leads us up all the various avenues and alleyways but in the end, it doesn't really matter. We're just glad that everyone who deserves retribution - gets it!
The doing-good-via-bad cliché is hammered home, but again we don't really care. We know right will out, however perversely (and hopefully brutally!) because Eastwood's with the programme.

Visually, the films superb. The town appears condensed, like a vacuum, especially when Eastwood demands it be painted red. It's not the traditional homely Western hamlet, which deserves to be defended by brave men for whom it's worthwhile giving their lives. It's a bleak, soul-less outpost, desperate and afraid of it's own shadowy secrets and the fact they're returning to haunt it when it thought they were buried with the sheriff.
Bruce Surtees camerawork effortlessly conveys this - and more.(let's not give Eastwood ALL the credit) We get a very real sense of the artless, cuboid structures and the creepy inhabitants deserving each other.

Performance-wise, Eastwood plays Eastwood with a twisted comic bravado (he knows he's distorting the western myth, by subverting the very iconography and legend that built it in the first place), he prowls the streets like Ann Coulter on the look-out for liberals; a cold glint as another low-life bites the dust.
Geoffrey Lewis is grotesquely brilliant as the drunken, heartless, leering chief-baddy, and the rare Verna Bloom is handsome and sassy as the rebellious wife of one of Lago's slimy conspirators.

There's blood by the bucket; roaring gun-fights; an inevitable,(but well-staged) all consuming fire; seriously nasty whippings and there's even a squalid, squeaky-voiced dwarf who, along with some 'pesky injun savages', are the only people to benefit from the 'drifter's' brief tenure.

'High Plains Drifter' is a delirious amalgam of all that's small and sleazy in our sugar-veneered world.
A cynical, yet not completely hopeless vision of mankind in general, which is as valid and relevant now as when Eastwood shot it.
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42 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great western by the hands of Eastwood himself, 19 Nov. 2003
By 
Sebastian Haselbeck "SebH" (Germany) - See all my reviews
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While HIGH PLAINS DRIFTER might not be of the high quality a "Fistful of Dollars" may be, this is surely a film you should pick up. It marks Eastwood's second film as a director and he certainly proves that he had guts enough to make this a tough western movie in the tradition of his "Man with no name" predecessors.
Once again, Eastwood plays an unnamed stranger, riding into a town that bears trouble. Quickly sucked into the local tensions, he gets hired by the town's inhabitants to track down the source of evil. Of course, how else should it be, he ends up being the avenging angel bringing very DEADLY justice to the criminals.
HIGH PLAINS DRIFTER is a serious piece of western-movie entertaining to the last minute. Eastwood shows that it doesn't need the name Leone to deliver a solid western.
The DVD itself offers decent quality and a great cover for the collector enthusiast.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'Welcome to 'Hell'., 13 May 2008
This is a must see western. It's Clint cutting his directorial teeth on the genre after stamping his mark as the anti-hero man with no name son of a gun.

As a western it's a damned fine film, but it has a wonderfully mysterious quality to it that takes it to a much higher level. There are some truly iconic scenes on show -'a shave in the barber shop' & 'the bullwhips'. As a director Eastwood seems to live and breathe the west, as an actor he has instant believability, there's nothing 'showy' here it's gritty realism and Geoffrey Lewis.

It's gotta be watched and that's the bottom line. Adios.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ground Breaking, must-see western, 25 July 2002
By 
This review is from: High Plains Drifter [DVD] (DVD)
If you are a fan of the western genre then this 1973 masterpiece directed by and Starring Clint Eastwood breaks new ground.Clint re-works his character of "The man with new name" to give him a similar handle "The Stranger" but creates a new niche in this particular sphere by surrounding his star in mysticism yet creating an almost Gothic-Western with a chilling storyline.Straight from the outset the camera work is of exquisite quality following the slow horseback trail of "The Stranger" who almost floats into town to the glares and inquisitive looks of the small village of Lago.He finds himself the central character in a village with a dark secret who are in fear of attack from a gang responsible for the Horse-whipping to death of a previous marshall.After shooting dead some unsavory characters and raping a local woman the townsfolk take the unusual step of hiring the stranger to "protect their interests" in the local mine.From the off a midget (played by Billy Curtis) befriends the stranger and becomes his aide, firstly providing mundane tasks such as lighting his cigars before he is promoted to mayor later on.The Stranger uses his new position in the town to the limit and in preparation for the return of the violent gang seizes the opportunity to give the town a more chiling but appropriate new identity.The entire village is painted red, renamed "hell" before The stranger literally dissapears in a heat haze underlying the mythical and gothic elements in his character. Awaiting his imminant return the anxious villagers grow restless among themselves about their new recruit and they also begin to feel the pangs of guilt over the death of the marshall.The strangers response is clinical and justifiable on the behalf of the townsfolk and the gang who return to plunder it, but to the memory of the marshall it seems that his death albeit a savage one was not in vain.This film includes a strong cast,many of whom were to return to act alongside clint in his "Every Which Way....." series. The camera work is extremely effective and the result is a seriously watchable at times comical and overall a really classic film of its generation, including one of those famous Clint lines.....A rowdy mob confront him at the start in a saloon and tell him that "Drifters dont usually live long in lago.....they usually find life a little too quick for them"Clints response- "IM FASTER THAN YOU WILL EVER LIVE TO SEE" before shooting them one by one and walking out.Note In(your) Diary- Must see film before I Die!!!!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Eastwood Takes The Reins, 27 April 2015
By 
Keith M - See all my reviews
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It was perhaps not surprising that, having initially resisted the 'pull of the western’ with his impressive 1971 directorial debut, Play Misty For Me, Clint Eastwood’s second 'stint in the chair’ produced this archetypal 1973 film from the man’s (hitherto) trademark genre. In fact, the opening of High Plains Drifter, as Eastwood’s 'Stranger’ emerges from the heat haze before riding through a graveyard, appears to be a direct homage to The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, as (of course) does his characterisation – a bearded, cigar-chomping, anonymous 'mystery man’ from the past. The film’s look and feel is also (particularly early on) 'Leone-esque’ – including an up-front sound design (clinking spurs, howling wind, etc) and lingering close-ups – although, overall, Eastwood’s film (unsurprisingly) does not quite match the idiosyncratic detail (and brilliance) of the Italian film-maker’s finest work (probably most significantly, there’s no Morricone soundtrack, of course).

There is, however, an unusual (and intriguing) sense of ambiguity in the film’s plot – itself showing its Kurosawa/Magnificent Seven roots – as, although the Stranger is (in trademark fashion) enlisted to provide the firepower necessary to defeat an imprisoned gang of 'soon-to-be-released’ ne’er-do-wells, the town in question, Lago (and its associated shady mining business), has its own guilty past which prompts ambivalence in (and raises questions about the identity of) the interloper. Another major strength of High Plains Drifter is its casting – a talent which Eastwood was to demonstrate to even more impressive effect three years later in The Outlaw Josey Wales – peppering the film with idiosyncratic character performances from the likes of (midget) Billy Curtis’ (he of Hitch’s Saboteur circus troupe) 'assistant barber’ turned sheriff, Mordecai, William O’Connell’s nerdy barber (the same actor provided one of 'Wales’ great cameos, Sim Carstairs), Verna Bloom’s initially defiant, conscientious objector, Sarah Belding, plus a number of suitably malicious 'baddies’, including Geoffrey Lewis’ Stacy Bridges and Anthony James’ (later appearing in Eastwood’s Unforgiven) 'weasel-faced’, Cole Carlin.

Ernest Tidyman’s screenplay is (in the main) quite sharp, with much wry humour – the sequence where the Stranger attempts to train the town in sharpshooting by firing at a set of moving dummies is hilarious – and the sequence of (literally) 'painting the town red’ is particularly intriguing. The film is also notable (and atypically innovative for the genre) in maintaining to the end a sense of ambiguity in the Stranger’s retributive role.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic, 11 April 2009
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This review is from: High Plains Drifter [DVD] (DVD)
An absolute classic, I think the second that Clint directed after 'Play Misty for Me'. It has action, mystery, brilliant characters. I can watch this again and again, essential for any western collection.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic Clint - Long Live Cool!, 9 Jun. 2009
By 
Marils (Los Angeles) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: High Plains Drifter [DVD] (DVD)
Sara - "I knew you were cruel but I didn't know how far you could go."

The Stranger - "You still don't."

-------------------------------------------------------------

Sara - "You are the kind of man that makes people afraid, and that's dangerous."

The Stranger - "It's what people know about themselves inside that makes them afraid"

I only have limited space in which to store DVD's, so I choose the ones I do purchase carefully. Choosing High Plains Drifter was an easy decision, as it has all the attributes of a great western and a good flick. The barren landscape is as haunting as the opening music. A tale is told, a situation resolved, and yet a bit of mystery remains, causing you to question what you have just seen.

Classic Clint...

The cast does a very fine job in creating characters that fully support the premise of the movie and portray the towns dynamic. From beginning to end, however, it is Clint Eastwood as "The Stranger" who is the star and makes the movie memorable.

Eastwood is the quintessential strong/silent type, a soft-spoken man of few words who explodes into action to deliver justice, whether to a gunslinger or an insolent woman. The character, however, is more than squinting, delivering one-liners, and pulling the trigger. He's a thinker, a planner, he creates a psychological advantage against the bad guys... whether it be using dynamite or red paint. He can also turn on the charm, using those famous blue eyes to twinkle and speak without dialogue, as Vera Bloom (Sara Belding) discovers first hand.

The DVD...

The DVD comes with subtitles in 14 languages (Including English) and spoken languages in English, Deutsch, Italiano, French, and Castellano.

The menu allows you to search by scene, and includes production notes as well as a theatrical trailer and information about the cast.

I knew I wanted to own a copy of High Plains Drifter, but it was not until I saw it again that I realized that I had forgotten how good it really is.

I wish that I could give it 4 1/2 stars,

Enjoy!
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High Plains Drifter [DVD]
High Plains Drifter [DVD] by Clint Eastwood (DVD - 2008)
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