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BLOOD WORK


"...a bracingly no-nonsense, highly professional policier--as proudly old-fashioned as its curmudgeon hero...Continuing to contemplate his own mortality, Eastwood casts himself as a celebrity FBI agent who suffers a coronary on the job, receives a heart transplant, and emerges from his houseboat retirement once he discovers that his donor was the victim of an unsolved murder... Moody and succinct, 'Blood Work' cuts quicker to the chase than the star's recent genre films." --

J. Hoberman, The Village Voice

"Like 'Space Cowboys,' 'Blood Work' is a wry exercise in geriatric uplift. The world (and the movie audience) may be enchanted by the flash and dazzle of youth, but the old-timers are tougher, wiser and, heart transplant or no, sexier, too...His filmmaking is efficient to the point of drabness...as relentlessly linear as a stretch of desert highway, which means you can see what's coming from miles away...But even though he gives the game away, Mr. Eastwood remains a pretty smooth player, and what 'Blood Work' lacks in speed and surprise it almost makes up for in doughty professionalism." -- A.O. Scott, The New York Times

"...a sturdy, if dawdling, old-fashioned adding-up-the-clues mystery that turns out to be one or two notches cleverer than you expect; it's tasty and diverting genre popcorn...the canniest aspect of 'Blood Work' is the way that it makes the issue of Eastwood's age (he's 72) genuinely dramatic...He's now playing a man whose will is stronger than his body, and it's that tension--between anger and frailty, steel and decay--that powers the movie." --Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly

"Unlike some action stars who want to remain supermen forever, Eastwood has paid attention to his years, and found stories to exploit them...There is action and violence in 'Blood Work,' but not the pumped-up, computer-aided pyrotechnics of so many of Hollywood's summer thrillers...Eastwood has directed himself in 20 films, and that may represent the most consistent director-actor relationship in modern movies. He knows himself, he knows his craft, his pride as a director is dominant over his ego as an actor, and the results are films that use a star aura with an uncommon degree of intimacy." --Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

"As he ages as an actor, Eastwood, like Paul Newman, uses an economy of means to remain as compelling as he ever was. He thoroughly knows his core persona, and he has honed his trademark look of disgust until it's one of the most vivid ever put on screen. But Eastwood's directing has also been affected by his age. You don't know whether to admire the film's stately nature and call it classicism or be exasperated by a noticeable lack of pace...The flip side of classicism is lethargy, and 'Blood Work' can be so complacently paced you may want to give it a shot of Red Bull." --Kenneth Turan, The Los Angeles Times

"It's an intriguing setup, filled with colorful characters, lots of humor and well-developed scenes...But for his 23rd film as a director, Eastwood makes some clumsy camera moves that tip off the identity of the culprit way too early--That's a major debit in a thriller, as is the tired chase through a derelict ship at the climax." --Lou Lumenick, The New York Post

"Like the fine old shoe that he is, Clint Eastwood is all wrinkles and comfort in the role of retired FBI agent Terry McCaleb...Clint squints menacingly, but doesn't kick a lot of butt here. And his directing of this kind of material also has mellowed." --Jack Mathews, The New York Daily News