Clint Eastwood's "The Mule" had a 3-day box-office debut of $17.2M. This would rank as the writer-director-actor's third best opening ever (right behind 2000’s "Space Cowboys" ($18M) and 2008's "Gran Torino" ($29.4M). The film seems to also be loved by audiences who gave it an A- on CinemaScore and 4 stars on PostTrak. Audience reaction is much more impressive than its 62% RT fresh score, which no doubt has been bolstered by Eastwood's staunch Conservative stance these last few years.
Protesters from a vocal but minor community in film criticism state that his character in "The Mule" is a racist and the Latinos in the film are unjustly portrayed as caricatured bad guys. Whatever, it seems like there is something to hate about with every movie these days.
Eastwood delivers a fantastic performance as an 80-year old who decides to become a drug runner for a Mexican cartel, and his chances of garnering a Best Actor nomination at 88 years of age have risen significantly this past weekend. The legendary actor is well-loved in the industry, despite his politics in staunchly liberal-minded Hollywood. Also, his contending performance is now part of a hit movie, which is something that this year's Oscars will have plenty of, with blockbusters such as "Black Panther," "A Star is Born," and "Bohemian Rhapsody" all expected to be part of the festivities.
Eastwood stands a chance at nabbing the fifth and final slot in the Actor category. Right now, Bradley Cooper ("A Star is Born"), Christian Bale ("Vice"), Viggo Mortensen ("Green Book"), Rami Malek ("Bohemian Rhapsody"), and Ethan Hawke ("First Reformed") are all contending, but it wouldn't be surprising to see Eastwood taking either Mortensen or Hawke's slots as they are still question marks in regards to being nominated.