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Though much too surly for the Star Wars crowd, this action film by Clint Eastwood achieved a level of personal expressiveness all but banished from popular American movies. As a director, Eastwood has always focused on the persona he presents as an actor, constantly redefining himself; the plot of Firefox, which requires Eastwood to slip into Russia and steal a secret warplane, is a series of disguises and redefinitions, ending with the actor's obliteration of himself. The first half is dark and slow, with a Bressonian terseness; the second, after the theft of the plane, is bright and full of action, though the ideas are even blacker (1982).

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