The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976)
He doesn’t understand why we’re angry? We’re losing the country as it was founded! Hey, Howard, you need to go out and rent a movie if you want to understand this today: The Outlaw Josey Wales. Just go rent the movie starring Clinton Eastwood. In the pre-Dirty Harry days, although not that different from Dirty Harry but still. Go out and rent the movie The Outlaw Josey Wales and you’ll get some kind of an idea. The fact that they don’t understand the anger? I’m not even sure that they can, no matter what we do to explain it to them.
This movie has been in my top 10 since it came out 34 years ago. The story is about Josey Wales is a peaceful farmer in the days near the end of the Civil War. After his home is burned and his family murdered, he hardens into a human bullet – dedicated to destroying the renegades who took his “life.” He joins a band of unreconstructed rebel guerrilla fighters who continue to fight the Union – even after the official surrender of the Confederacy – an action which makes them, legally, outlaws. Josey is driven by vengeance, but after a while, that’s not enough.