Directed by: Clint Eastwood | 127 minutes | drama, crime, thriller | Actors: Clint Eastwood, Isaiah Washington, Lisa Gay Hamilton, James Woods, Denis Leary, Bernard Hill, Diane Verona, Michael McKean, Michael Jeter, Mary McCormack, Hattie Winston, Penny Bae Bridges, Francesca Fisher-Eastwood, John Finn, Frances Fisher , Marissa Ribisi, John Finn, Laila Robins, Sydney Tamiia Poitier, Erik King, Graham Beckel, Christine Ebersole, Anthony Zerbe, Nancy Giles, Tom McGowan, William Windom, Don West, Lucy Liu, Dina Eastwood, Leslie Griffith, Dennis Richmond, Dan Green, Frank Sommerville
In ‘True Crime’, Eastwood plays journalist Steve Everett, who takes over a case investigated by his mistress at least 30 years younger when she dies in a car accident. The case concerns Frank Beechum who is on trial for the murder of a six-month pregnant woman about six years earlier. Beechum will be executed at midnight, the day Everett takes over the case. Super reporter that he is, Everett immediately smells disaster and investigates. With the help of notes made by his deceased girlfriend, he discovers more and more facts with which he could prove the innocence of Frank Beechum. What jack of all trades Clint Eastwood does best is directing films and putting himself in the lead. This is also the case in ‘True Crime’ – a film that was not well received by the American audience,
Ok, the story is quite good and halfway through the film there is a need to find out how things work. Unfortunately colleague Tim Robbins came up with the brilliant ‘Dead Man Walking’ a few years earlier. Fortunately, he did not give himself a leading role and due to the many nominations he received for his production, there was clearly no room for a second ‘death-row’ film.
‘True Crime’ is full of clichés and as a viewer you are a little too often inclined to think “yes, it will be”. Why do the facts Everett finds only now, why does it (as always) take until the last moment for the actual evidence to be found and so on. Eastwood is an almost elderly man who – of course – can easily get the prettiest and youngest women into bed; of course, a scene with one of his young acquisitions must also show a bare torso. With a good sip on neatly behind the wheel, the best man can also perfectly. It is all a bit too unbelievable. Good acting performance could cancel out all these downsides. Unfortunately, in Eastwood’s case, these are also not worth mentioning. The only one who still comes across as reasonably credible is Isaiah Washington, who, waiting for his execution, puts down a chunk of emotions. With too many clichés and boring Eastwood acting, ‘True Crime’ has not become a compelling film. In keeping with the American public: certainly not an Eastwood topper.