Comic Adaptation Week: Clint Eastwood's Old Man Logan
Millar and McNiven’s Old Man Logan isn’t about the animal Wolverine, it’s about the man Logan. Leaving his past behind him, Logan becomes a pacifist in a world where the villains have won, until his landlords--the Hulk’s inbred children--threaten to evict him if he can’t come up with his rent. The now blind Avenger Hawkeye offers Logan enough money that he’ll never need to work again in exchange for playing bodyguard on a nationwide road trip, delivering mysterious goods to the rebel party. Even though Logan has left his brawling ways in the past, the money is too good, so he agrees.
Although it has its moments of complete badassery, it’s not a comic about how a tough, aging Wolverine slashes his way through the country. OML is about being old and tired and just wanting to quietly live out the rest of your years, but something is preventing you from doing just that. It’s about being a good person because it’s who you are, even though you may not like it.
Clint Eastwood’s Gran Torino plays with similar themes, the 80 year old Eastwood stars as um, an 80 year old man, war-worn, full of good old American racial hate, but also, you know, a good heart. Eastwood’s portrayal of a man who’s lost it all and is just waiting for his time to end struck me as strange, the man you knew for, “You’ve gotta ask yourself a question: ‘Do I feel lucky?’ Well, do ya punk?” spends his time just working on his car and garden?
It felt like giving up, but then I realized it’s not giving up, it’s starting again and having the opportunity to really be who you’ve never been able to. By also directing the film, Eastwood would be able to add that sense of grizzled heroism from the movies that he's become known for, revealing the motivations behind a mean old man's actions without forcing pity out of the audience. Eastwood's ability to portray an older man who isn't helpless, but obviously somewhat frail and sick, is what an old Wolverine would need. There also aren't a lot of old men who know they could kick your ass and that's important too.