Every Which Way But Loose (1978)

Every Which Way But Loose (1978)

“Well, it appears to me that there can’t be too many guys driving around this valley with an ape.”

A trucker and fighter (Clint Eastwood) who’s fallen in love with an itinerant country-western singer named Lynn Halsey-Taylor (Sondra Locke) travels across the country with his buddy (Geoffrey Lewis) and pet orangutan Clyde (Manis) to find her.

Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:

  • Clint Eastwood Films
  • Comedy
  • Primates
  • Road Trip
  • Ruth Gordon Films
  • Truckers

Response to Peary’s Review:
Peary writes that while “Clint Eastwood’s first outright comedy” — surely inspired by the popularity of Smokey and the Bandit (1977) — “drew the wrath of most critics,” it “became his biggest commercial success at the time.” He argues that “as directed by James Fargo, it’s a very crude, too violent, thinly plotted but often very funny film about a not-too-bright but amiable trucker named Philo Beddoe, who picks up extra money by challenging local toughs to bare-knuckle fights.”

Peary spends the bulk of his review describing the various characters and scenarios — which include “the cantankerous Ma (Ruth Gordon)”:

… a “mysterious country-western singer [with] a secret” (Locke):

… the “resourceful girlfriend (Beverly D’Angelo)” of Orville (Wright):

… and a slapstick-filled pursuit “by an inept, overage motorcycle gang and two cops.”

Peary writes that while “the film is absurd… Locke’s character is intriguing and there’s something touching about Philo as he attempts to win her over” — though this may only hold true for diehard Eastwood fans. For all others, this is simply an erstwhile crowd-pleaser now memorable for featuring an orangutan (who gives a fine performance).

Notable Performances, Qualities, and Moments:

  • Philo and Clyde’s rapport together

Must See?
No, though it has its fans.


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