The first images were just released for Clint Eastwood’s new western Cry Macho. After seeing the trailer, you know this is going to be another smash. Clint Eastwood opposite a young troubled teen who must begrudgingly take the old man’s help smuggling him out of Mexico. Throw in a dollop of Dwight Yoakum, and you’ve got yourself a recipe for a stirring, tender but tough story of redemption for an old man, and a second chance for a young one.
The official Warner Bros. synopsis reads, “Based on the book, Cry Macho stars Clint Eastwood as a one-time rodeo star and washed-up horse breeder who, in 1978, takes a job from an ex-boss to bring the man’s young son home and away from his alcoholic mom. Crossing rural Mexico on their way back to Texas, the unlikely pair faces an unexpectedly challenging journey, during which the world-weary horseman may find his own sense of redemption through teaching the boy what it means to be a good man.”
The trailer shows us all we need to see to know that the pairing for Clint Eastwood with newcomer Eduardo Minett just clicks. On the road back to safety from a dangerous situation in Mexico, Mike Milo (Eastwood) tells his life story to a punk kid that is about to go down the same wrong road as his smuggler/rescuer did. They make their road trip without a hitch. I’m kidding, of course trouble comes at every turn. Add that they are traveling with a rooster named Macho, they have quite enough to contend with.
Eastwood has been trying to get this movie off the ground since 1988. Names like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Pierce Brosnan, and Burt Lancaster have been attached to star at different points. But it seemed dead in the water in 2003, when an adaptation was announced with Al Ruddy producing and Arnold Schwarzenegger in the leading role. After postponing filming because of Schwarzenegger’s term as the governor of California, the production was canceled in 2011 following revelations of a scandal involving him.
Going into his seventh decade of acting, he brought N. Richard Nash’s novel of the same name to an audience he believes still loves the art of the story. And what does he think of being macho? “‘Macho’ was a fashionable word in the 1980s. Everybody was kind of into it, what’s macho and what isn’t macho. I really don’t know what macho is. I never have understood. Does it mean somebody who swaggers around exuding testosterone? And kicks the gate open and runs sprints up and down the street? Or does handsprings or whatever? Or is macho a quiet thing based on your security. I remember shaking hands with Rocky Marciano. He was gentle, he didn’t squeeze your hand. And he had a high voice. But he could knock people around, it was a given. That’s macho. Muhammad Ali is the same. If you talked with him in his younger years, he spoke gently. He wasn’t kicking over chairs. I think some of the most macho people are the gentlest.”
Cry Macho also stars Dwight Yoakam, Eduardo Minett (in his feature film debut), Natalia Traven, . Alexandra Ruddy, and Ana Rey. Cry Macho hits theaters and on HBO Max on September 17 and will be available to stream for 31 days after its release.