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Blood Work
DVD disk
10.08.2004 By: The Shootin Surgeon
Blood Work order
Director:
Clint Eastwood

Actors:
Clint Eastwood
Jeff Daniels
Wanda De Jesus

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Soon after getting a life-saving heart transplant, retired FBI profiler Terry McCaleb (Eastwood) is approached by a woman asking him to take on one last case. When he learns that the woman is the sister of the murdered girl whose heart is beating inside him, he reluctantly accepts and begins a twisting and weaving investigation in the hopes of solving a case the police has given up on.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
There's much to say about Clint Eastwood. The man has been in more hits than most other Hollywood actors could ever dream to be, but even a die-hard fan like myself has to admit that BLOOD WORK is a bit of a let down. Eastwood himself is fantastic, as usual, as the retired FBI investigator with failing health and the plot, story line and execution are also quite good. In fact, I rather enjoyed the film on the whole, but one thing really bothered me: other than Eastwood's...there wasn't one character in this film I could've given two shits about, starting with the detestable sister played horribly by Wanda De Jesus. Not only was she burdened with a character whose entire premise in the film is based on her blackmailing an ill, retired man, but De Jesus goes through the entire movie without changing that stern (and very unlikable) expression on her face. Halfway through, I began hoping Eastwood would rip out Dirty Harry's .44 Magnum and blow her ass away! There's also the matter of the unnecessary local cop (Paul Rodriguez) who, as any good stereotype goes, doesn't like a retired Fed meddling into his affairs. As usual, he's overweight, he eats donuts and he cracks snarky one-liners at every opportunity he gets...

Amazingly enough though, my man Clint holds the whole thing together and shows the world that he can still dish out the fear when need be. His own one-liners are still quite biting and funny, especially when he calmly explains to Paul Rodriguez that "you're an asshole and you can't help it". Let's face it, the man is getting on in years and yet most people still watch his movies expecting him to shoot up the town and kick ass, but I have to give him credit for not being afraid to show some physical vulnerability in his most recent characters. I'd like to see today's young punks flashing their porcelain smiles on the silver screen when they reach their seventies but then again, I may never get that chance since about ninety-eight percent of them will be gone and forgotten by the time my coffee turns cold.

As a whole though, the film turns out to be somewhat entertaining, even though it starts off a bit slow. You will likely spend more time hoping that some of the "good guys" bite it (You'll pay for this, Wanda De Jesus!! You'll pay!!) rather than the bad, but in the back of your mind, you always no that no matter how evil that bad guy is, he can't be much more of a badass than Clint Eastwood, young or old. Fans of The Man With No Name will get their usual kick out of him and others will get to watch a pretty tight, if flawed, movie as well.
THE EXTRAS
There's really nothing to write home about for this DVD considering there are only two features worthy of that title. The first one is an 18-minute long featurette by the name of Making "Blood Work" and is basically a series of interviews with all the stars about their thoughts on the film. There's no real "making-of" stuff where you'll see significant on-set footage. Second is a 15-minute long conversation in Spanish with Wanda De Jesus, Paul Rodriguez and Clint Eastwood. Eastwood only shows up toward the end and doesn't really talk much, so basically you get a few minutes worth of Paul Rodriguez attempting (in vain) to be funny and the dreadful Wanda De Jesus attempting (in vain) to look intelligent.

Other than that, you have the teaser trailer, theatrical trailer and star career highlights.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
I'm a huge Eastwood fan so I can be entertained by pretty much anything he does, but despite this film featuring a pretty decent story, it ultimately gets bogged down by a weak supporting cast. Daniels is decent and an appearance by Anjelica Huston is always appreciated, but even they can't overcome the deadly duo of De Jesus and Rodriguez who rid this film of much of its credibility. It's worth a rental, but not much more.
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