Saturday, November 10, 2007

No. 38 - Breezy

Clint Eastwood's third film as a director defied all expectations. For one thing, he didn't appear in it. Second, it's a romantic drama, a genre he had never undertaken as an actor. Breezy belies Eastwood's macho image. It also reveals for the first time his ambition as a filmmaker to explore genres outside of his wheelhouse.

Breezy, like many 70's films, is a mid-life crisis movie. It's a May-December romance, with burned out real estate executive William Holden falling for hippie-chick Kay Lenz (in the titular role). Breezy brings our man back to life, and surprisingly, the relationship grows from one-night stand to something permanent.

It was a 70's convention to have 55 year old male protagonists boning 25 year old women (Holden peformed similar duties with Faye Dunaway in Network). While it might not sound promising on paper, Breezy works well on the screen. Eastwood allows Holden and Lenz to go through all the incremental phases that lovers go through -- from distrust to curiosity to bickering to a deeper bond. Eastwood returned to similar terrain with Bridges of Madison County twenty years later.

1 comment:

Daniel Mersheim said...

What do you know about "all the incremental phases that lovers go through"?