What a briliant movie. Story and acting both superb. I will focus on the ending since I realise many people dislike the end,and it is true its not a happy ending movie and no sort of justice is served...exactly as it happens in many occassions in real life. Although Daves tragedy is recognised by his old friends, as it would by anybody, the reality remains that they don't value him as an equal. They can not relate with him therefore the tragedy of his death does not have huge impact on them. As it was mentioned many times in the movie, including Dave himself, he was considered dead to many since he stepped into that car. His real death just came as a belated conclusion to everyone in the community. Looking closer at Jimmy and his wife, and the last speach she gives about Jimmy being the king, is just a verbalised example of how deflated ego combined with self-righteousness can justify the most horrible of actions. I thought this attitude was realistic by the particular characters and one can only argue about the way it was explained to us. The movie ending may not satisfy the "political correctness" sensitive crowd, but personally I was not offended by the fact that justice was not served. This movie is a story, is not trying to delive a message of what is right and wrong, but how the characters react to their circumstances and boy it did a briliant job. . Injustice happens more often in life than justice, sometimes for little and sometimes for really important matters. People should be offended by the real life injustice more and less with the ones that appear in fictional pieces of art.
It would have been a decent movie. But the ending was too frustrating to watch, starting with the scene where Jimmy's wife praises him. The movie should have ended with drunk Jimmy walking down the street, leaving it unknown if he goes to jail or not, also leaving Sean clean. The ending, showing Jimmy and his wife being careless about Dave, and moreover Sean showing that Dave's murder was "no biggy bro" seems like the movie wants to send a wrong message that I don't wanna say out loud since it's disgusting. They could have left it untold about everyone's lives. Instead they chose to show ignorance towards the death of the most tragic character in movie.
Except for the ending (where Jimmy doesn't go to jail even though he has committed two murders) this is a great movie! What I don't get is why Eastwood only hints that Sean tries to get Jimmy to jail and why he doesn't end the film with Jimmy's imprisonment (additionally I found Jimmy's wife's statement at the end of the film ridiculous...)