Honkytonk Man is one of those well-intentioned efforts that doesn't quite work. It seems that Clint Eastwood took great pains in telling this story of an aging, struggling country singer but he is done in by the predictability of the script [from Clancy Carlile's own novel] and his own limitations as a warbler.

Honkytonk Man is one of those well-intentioned efforts that doesn’t quite work. It seems that Clint Eastwood took great pains in telling this story of an aging, struggling country singer but he is done in by the predictability of the script [from Clancy Carlile's own novel] and his own limitations as a warbler.

It is initially funny to see a drunk Eastwood drive his spiffy car into the rural, Depression-era farm his sister and her burdened family live in. Though he is a breath of fresh air for them, especially his 14-year-old nephew, it soon becomes clear that he is more accurately an alcoholic on his last legs.

Eastwood does his best, though he never really manages to be fully convincing because of his own vocal limitations. His son, Kyle, who has limited acting experience, doesn’t seem to know what to do with his key role of the emerging teenager.

Honkytonk Man

Production

Warner/Malpaso. Dir Clint Eastwood; Producer Clint Eastwood; Screenplay Clancy Carlile; Camera Bruce Surtees; Editor Ferris Webster, Michael Kelly, Joel Cox; Music Steve Dorff Art Dir Edward Carfagno

Crew

(Color) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1982. Running time: 122 MIN.

With

Clint Eastwood Kyle Eastwood John McIntire Alexa Kenin Verna Bloom Matt Clark
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