Unforgiven is an unforgettable experience in many ways. A visually appealing story set in the late nineteenth century is brilliantly directed by Client Eastwood. What it lacks in originality, it more than makes up with the help of an extra ordinary cast that seems totally dedicated in the effort, worthy direction, cinematography and background music.

At the face of it, it is the story of an old gunslinger, William Munny, who returns to his previous criminal ways to take one last job so that he could make the money to support his family. He has left behind him a horrible past from which he was rescued by his late wife. Once on the job, he struggles to get a grip, constantly admonishing himself about the sins of his drunk youth, but he ultimately does come around in the usual Eastwood elan.

It is a very interesting story for many reasons. It raises the basic question as to what is right and wrong. Can a man really ever be redeemed from his sinsful ways? What is sin anyway? Can a man ever be forgiven -- by the world and more importantly by himself?

Mr. Eastwood weaves this theme around his old Western plots -- however, this time he make sure that he clearly exposes the myths of the macho west so inordinately and inaccurately glamourized by popular culture. Of course the fact that Mr. Eastwood was probably its most important proponent and benifitter glares as the classic dilemma facing Mr. Eastwood.

Gene Hackman is the fiercely potent sheriff of Big Whisky where Mr. Eastwood and his friend, Morgan Freeman, need to perform the job. Mr. Hackman plays one of his finest roles here. It is not a novelty for him but the energy with which he plays the character for the Nth time is worth applauding.

But ultimately it is yet another vehicle for Clint Eastwood, probably one of the most endearing movie stars of all time. At the ripe age of 62, he has an incredible screen presence. It is a treat to watch him fumble and grumble throughout the movie as he tries to cope with the stress of old age and the nagging guilt of his past. You clearly doubt if his character could be convincingly resurrected. Mr. Eastwood, the actor and the director put that doubt to rest by filming a classic last showdown that easily equals or surpasses most of Mr. Eastwood's own magical climaxes in movies like "Good, the bad and the ugly" or "For a few dollars more".

Unforgiven is one of the best Westerns you will ever see. You will specially enjoy it if you have seen and known Clint Eastwood as most of us did.