The Old Man & The Gun – Robert Redford’s Last Ride in Front of the Camera?

Robert Redford, in what he claims will be his last role in front of the camera, remains a decades-long box office draw. He has shown his skill behind the camera, but it is as a star that he will be most remembered.

If indeed this is his last hurrah, it is a fitting finale to one of America’s finest actors.

Redford plays an aging bank robber, who has successfully escaped prison many times. Redford is very comfortable in the role, relying on his undiminished charm to become enamored by several ladies in the cast, by the 16mm cameras used by cinematographer Joe Anderson and ultimately by the audience.

The perfectly balanced cast is wonderful to watch. Sissy Spacek plays a love interest, to whom Redford returns after a series of events. Casey Affleck, Danny Glover and Elisabteh Moss provide an eclectic addition, no less so than two musician / actors of superb skill: Tom Waits and Keith Carradine. Both Waits and Carradine have brought their unique personas to small but memorable roles, and they do so again here. Indeed, great music choices abound in the film.

But it is to Redford that all eyes return. His most memorable role as a robber scoundrel of course was in “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.” In the case of “The Old Man & The Gun,” the setting is nearly contemporary, burnishing Redford’s cowboy mystique in a more modern persona, but still the memory of the Sundance Kid lingers.

Brad Auerbach has been a journalist and editor covering the media, entertainment, travel and technology scene for many years. He has written for Forbes, Time Out London, SPIN, Village Voice, LA Weekly and early in his career won a New York State College Journalism Award.