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Withnail33's avatar


The trailer made this seem like it had a lot more suspense and action than what I saw. This was pretty tame for an Eastwood film and a little below-average compared to his other work. Clint Eastwood has some great "grandpa" moments with his un-PC insults and unfiltered dialogue. A handful of familiar actors extends the cast (Bradley Cooper, Laurence Fishburne) but play very toned down and generic characters.
I think the film might have symbolized the hanging of his acting/directing hat - he's getting pretty old.

If that's the case The Mule is not what I would consider a strong farewell piece - I think he's got one or two more in him and he is capable of doing much better.
2 years 6 months ago
Emiam's avatar


A basically good film, but I am bothered by two things: 1. (SPOILER) I would have liked a aftertext that explained how long he was "inside", if he died inside, if the cartel continued to search, etc.). 2. If, as a large cartel, you smuggle drugs for millions of dollars, can you not afford to change cars for every new drive? The producers should have noticed the latter when they cut the film - one illogical gap, ie.
5 months 1 week ago
Forzelius's avatar


Lots of phoned in performances and unnecessary family drama but still enjoyable. Old grandpa Clint being surrounded with primarily hispanic populace is a recipe for greatness. The thing that annoyed me to no end was the fact that a cartel who's pushing hundreds of millions worth of coke per run, couldn't afford a car swap after each run. Seems like a nobrainer to keep the DEA off your track.
8 months 3 weeks ago
MrDoog's avatar


Must say I found it compelling and thoroughly enjoyable. It certainly has its flaws but I would still recommend.
2 years 2 months ago
Shingwauk's avatar


Overextended both in the length of the film and pace.
2 years 3 months ago
ikkegoemikke's avatar


Family’s the most important thing.
Work’s fine, if it’s in second position.
But first position should be family.


“The Old Man & the Gun” might be the piece de résistance of Robert Redford. “The Mule” might be the grand finale in Clint Eastwood’s career. This legendary actor looks shockingly old. I even felt sorry for him at certain times. The way he was treated is inconsistent with the image you have of him in other movies. I hoped that as a veteran, he would use a few handy fighting movements to silence the arrogant cartel members. Forget it. Clint Eastwood stayed loyal to his role as a submissive and defenseless elderly person who does what he’s told. But you can rest assured, Mr. Eastwood is and remains a brilliant and respectable actor. There’s no praise great enough when it comes to his acting talent. And this tough, almost 90-year-old man may slide the director’s chair under his weathered butt for many years because as a producer he made a few great movies as well (such as “Trouble with the curve”, “Sully” and “American Sniper“).

Not only does Eastwood play the leading role in “The Mule“, but he also produced it. The pace Eastwood uses here is striking. Everything goes smoothly, quietly and calmly. It’s the age, I guess. In any case, he takes his time to tell the story. It didn’t bother me at all because it’s a pleasure to see how the Eastwood actor does his thing. Even though he’s someone who has reached a blessed age, he still knows how to impress as an actor. More than the film itself actually. Not that it’s a really boring film, but there’s not much action here either. I have the impression Eastwood is using this film to apologize to his close relatives for being frequently absent because of his busy career. Perhaps that’s why his own daughter Alison Eastwood was assigned the role of his movie-daughter.

Eastwood plays the war veteran Earl Stone. A famous florist who, after his company is declared bankrupt, has to find another way to earn some money. Stone is an old-fashioned grump who lost contact with society apparently. Hence his misplaced comments about the internet and the way he addresses an African-American family. He was a true bon vivant and charmer in his younger years. Someone who led his own life in his own way and had little or no time for his family. That’s why he’s not welcomed with open arms by his wife Mary (Dianne Wiest) and daughter Iris (Alison Eastwood) when he returns after the internet ruined his business.

The only one who receives him with open arms is Rico, a friend of Earl’s granddaughter, who tells him about a seemingly simple job that pays good money. And before he realizes it, he’s a drug mule driving around for a Mexican drug cartel. His innocent appearance and stoic calmness ensure that Earl doesn’t appear on the radar of Detective Colin Bates (Bradley Cooper). While this motivated agent decisively searches for “El Tata”, this cheerfully singing grandfather transports kilos of cocaine stacked between pecans in the trunk of his car. Colin Bates even gets a free life lesson from Earl somewhere in a diner along the highway.

Of course, drug smuggling is the main subject of this film. A story based on true facts where 87-year-old Leo Sharp was caught with smuggling 90 kilos of cocaine. This film also shows how ruthless drug cartels are. But it’s also a film about regret, remorse and the frantic attempts to heal lost family ties. Perhaps it felt kitschy and corny at some point, but that was compensated by the subtle humor that seeped into the dialogues (a lesbian motorcycle gang and comparing a Mexican authoritative figure with the “Fuhrer”). Maybe a bit daring at certain moments, but I could only make approving chuckling noises. “The Mule” certainly isn’t Eastwood’s best film and the ending is a bit too abrupt. But it was still a pleasure to see movie icon Clint Eastwood at work again.

More reviews here
2 years 2 months ago
devilsadvocado's avatar


A generic, mildly entertaining Eastwood with the usual out of touch, politically incorrect senior moments.
2 years 6 months ago
josue.a.o's avatar


Without being so engaging and with no so strong impact as his last movies, it's still a nice reflection about what's important in life - from someone who has already lived the largest part of it ;)
2 years 2 months ago
Earring72's avatar


Very enjoyable drama with the GREAT Clint Eastwood, who carries the movie with his charisma. Some plotholes and the rest of the cast really don't have that much too do......but still pretty fine movie
2 years 2 months ago
georginagg's avatar


Bizarre. I want my money back.
2 years 5 months ago
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