American Hero (6)
12 November 2012
The Outlaw Josey Wales
In The Outlaw Josey Wales, the viewer finds the hero, Josey Wales, representing Christ to a world of sinners. It is unclear whether Clint Eastwood intended to direct the movie in mind with such similarities between Christ’s role as a savior and Josey’s actions. Christ is an archetypal, mythological hero figure that the well-read viewer finds often. From the physical wound in Josey’s right rib, to the fact that Josey, a lone hero, cannot help but guide and protect genuine people likens him to the figure of Christ. Furthermore, Josey indirectly offers his path to redemption to everyone around him, even the sinners, often portrayed as bounty hunters or Redlegs. The viewer finds Josey giving the opportunity to these men to turn back and rethink the life that they have chosen. In the end, those that choose to follow the path of Josey Wales are satisfied, while those who turn away from him are damned.
From the beginning of the film, we see parallels between the Christ figure and Josey Wales. In the Christ story, after enduring the suffering of His people, God sent Jesus to Earth to save the people. Similarly, Josey Wales witnesses the raping of his wife and watches helplessly as his son dies in the flames of his burning home, calling for his father to help. Later, we find Josey crying, holding the cross of his son’s grave, until it falls to the ground, turned sideways. A sideways cross, placed on a gravestone, signifies the hope for the resurrection of Jesus (www.religionfacts.com). This is a foreshadowing for the upcoming path that Josey will take. He offers his good deeds to those around him and attracts a wide range of followers that become like a close knit family, similar to the Church. Later, those around him realize that he is the savior that the world needs. When he is introduced to Granny Hawkins, she expresses that she did not believe what the Union...
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