a corrupt rich man who is practicing strip-mining.nEastwood’s admiration for Shane is easy to understand.nAlan Ladd is a man without family who saves not only ancommunity but also a family in the face of temptations tonuse violence and to steal another man’s wife. That thenfamily and the community are saved by a man who has beennstripped of both is a constant Eastwood theme. DirtynHarry’s wife was killed in a meaningless accident with andrunken driver. Josey Wales’s family was destroyed bynUnion raiders. Bronco Billy shot his wife when he caughtnher in bed with his best friend. (“What did you do to him?”nasks Sondra Locke. “Nothing,” Billy replies. “He was mynbest friend.”)nIt is here that the motifs of epic unite with the genericnconventions of the Western. Eastwood’s heroes are Vergilian.nLike Aeneas they have been stripped of family and citynso that they may lead others to a new home and a newncommunity. It is no wonder that ]osey Wales and BronconBilly, where these motifs are clearest, are also Eastwood’snmost successful films artistically. (Naturally this is not meantnto detract from the brilliance of 1988’s Bird, easily the bestndirected film of the year, pace Hollywood’s criminal indifference.)n. These themes unite most perfectly in the final scene ofnDirty Harry. Eastwood confronts an enemy whose madness,nfuror, will destroy society unless he is stopped, asnAeneas confronts Turnus at the end of the Aeneid. Harrynhas stopped Andy Robinson, the Scorpio Killer, fromnhurting the children in a school bus he hijacked, as Aeneasnwas not able to stop Turnus from killing young Pallas.nAlthough Turnus pleads for mercy, Aeneas knows that it isntoo late. Harry instead gives the Scorpio Killer a chance.nThe Aeneid ends with the death of Turnus. Not so DirtynHarry. After disposing of the Scorpio Killer,-Harry takes outnhis badge and throws it away, then slowly walks back as thencamera sweeps upward to show us the hustle and bustle ofnthe society that Harry will no longer risk his life for.nThe discarding of the badge and the leaving of thenspineless society is a direct mimesis of the end of HighnNoon. At some stage the hero will turn away from weaknessnand corruption and devote himself to creating his ownncommunity. That community may contain elements of thenabsurd, as in Josey Wales and Bronco Billy. The absurdity,nhowever, adds piquancy to man’s stumbling search fornhonesty and honor. The hero can no longer take refuge innhis situation as a problem. He must recover the harder andnadmittedly somewhat absurd task of becoming again anmodel for healthy and honest people.nThe dream of the West involves a frightened town,nterrorized by corruption and a guilty secret. That dream alsoncontains the promise of the frontier. It is a frontier in thenhuman mind and will, accessible to everyone with thencourage and the honesty to move out of corruption andnweakness. Honesty and courage, leading to creativity, arentheir own reward. They give meaning to an individual andnto a nation. No Academy Award can add to their importance.nIn Eastwood’s films, the American hero has ceased to bena problem and has become a model. The Man With NonName is free to choose a name, Bronco Billy or Josey Wales,nand so are we. <^nA Galop for Cesar Francknby Tom Dischn.nWho is, mon cher chasseur maudit,nThe biggest shark in all the sea?nThe carnivore to end all carnivores?nI know it isn’t me.nAlthough I feel I must be nearnThe end of the food chain.nYou see my net? You see my spear?nBe careful: I’m insane.nI hear you stir, I leap aside.nYou lunge; I feint; you cry!nYou come for me, but I’ve deniednYour god and you must die.n2.nOur conductorsnlook, for the most part, like businessmen,nand, like businessmen,nthey can unleash titanic forces.nI am not musical —ncan only dance, i.e., pretend to benpropelled by the beat,nand that not well. But then George Szellnis not himselfntitanic. There is a force beneathnthe music we understand,nand composers themselves, those supremenhuman beings,nwere, like the rest of us, the servantsnof its commands.nHear it! whirling through the world,nexultant; damned.nnnAUGUST 1989/23n