It’s a film that will stay with you long after the final credits roll. Not only because it’s one helluva good film, but also because it’s Robert Redford’s last film. At least he said it is. He announced his retirement last year just before shooting “The Old Man and the Gun,” and the film was released last August. But if you missed it last year, you’re in luck. Starting this week it will be available on a host of HBO channels, plus Netflix, On Demand, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and more.

Despite playing an old, crinkly character, Robert Redford, at 82, is still a gorgeous man. He twinkles his way through the almost-true story of Forrest Tucker, a man who spent his life juggling bank robberies, jail time, and some 30 unique escapes from jail. Some successful, others not.

He robbed banks, not because he needed the money, but because he just loved robbing banks. And Redford, like Tucker, did it so smoothly that the only thing the bank people could tell the police about him afterwards was “He was a real gentleman,” and “He seemed like a really nice guy.”

He comported himself quietly and with a big smile, and who could resist a smile from Robert Redford?

Obviously, Sissy Spacek couldn’t. She was struggling with her stalled truck on the highway when he stopped to offer his help. He saw it as a chance to leave his car by the side of the road and continue his travels by stealing her truck. But after he admitted that he “didn’t know much about cars,” he wound up driving her truck, with her in it, to the nearest gas station. And things proceeded from there.

Over time they developed a warm, comfortable relationship. They made each other laugh, and he looked forward to returning to her Texas ranch between robberies. But that isn’t the end of the story.

Those of you who read last week’s review, “Mysterious Circumstances,” a new play about Sherlock Holmes and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, might recall that I digressed to talk about one of my favorite authors: David Grann. In addition to producing a collection of fascinating books, Grann writes regularly for The New Yorker, and this story, “The Old Man and the Gun,” which appeared in the magazine on January 19th, 2003, was later adapted for the screen by David Lowery (who also directed it).

Lowery has done a terrific job of meshing a soft, delicate story with a series of beautiful, quiet shots of the landscape, filmed so unobtrusively that you almost aren’t aware of them.

He also provided strong backup for Redford and Spacek with Casey Affleck and Danny Glover as well as an appropriately mellow musical score.

So, all things considered, I feel confident in guaranteeing that you’re going to love this movie as much as I did!

Cynthia Citron has lived and worked on every continent except Antarctica as a journalist, award-winning magazine editor, public relations director, and screenwriter. She can be reached at

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