Crow's-Feet Chronicles: Sing it: 'Forever Young'
By Cindy Baker Burnett
Dec 31, 2018
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Celebrity heart throbs can break it. Your heart, that is. Perhaps I should have tried to forget how dreamy Robert Redford, Clint Eastwood, and Christian Bale were when I fell in love with each of them.

The Old Man and the Gun is, I suppose, Robert Redford’s swansong film, in which he plays an audacious real-life bank robber. He made light of each and every heist and was always dressed to the nines with genteel courtesy dripping all over him. When he smiled, though, his Sundance Kid charisma and sexy persona surfaced to the delight of baby boomers in the audience. Those pearly whites are still, well, pearly white. Yes, I realize Robert Redford is 82 years old, playing a character in his 70s, but he could have at least applied a moisturizer to his hands and face.  He owes us that.

Then there’s Clint Eastwood in The Mule. I squinted my eyes and tried to picture a cigarillo resting in the corner of his sensuous mouth when he played Blondie in The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. The snake rattle of the old spaghetti western was replaced with the Mexican cartel’s rolling Rs as “Earl” couriered their illegal drugs.  Sure, Eastwood is 88, but he should have had the wherewithal to straighten his shoulders and stand upright. And instead of a gun belt hanging low on his hips, he had the audacity to pull his belted khakis clear up to the armholes of his undershirt. Deliver me! To top it off, Clint Eastwood wasn’t standing at a bar throwing back shots of whiskey. Noooooo. He was planting, cultivating, and pampering DAY LILIES! Sigh.

Lastly, that hunka-hunka Christian Bale ditched his ripple abs as Batman for an industrial-sized paunch of Dick Cheney in Vice. What a chameleon! Bale gave up that sleek and sexy nose for a bulbous schnoz the size of Rhode Island. Rather than try to uncover the façade of a 50-pound weight gain and find the real Christian Bale, I sat in my reclining theater seat with a bucket of popcorn…and wept. Why didn’t they cast Tom Arnold in the role of Chaney? Or Jack Black?

Since I don’t remember Bette Davis as a young woman, her wrinkle trenches and recklessly lined lips (Did the makeup artist let her apply her own lipstick with a putty knife?) never bothered or disappointed me. Nor did her dark and dingy teeth in What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? offend me. She was what she was.

But Robert Redford, Clint Eastwood, and I grew up together. I knew them when we were all firm and feisty. Christian Bale?

Oh, he’s just an old woman’s fantasy.