One of the things many of us film buffs take for granted continues to be Clint Eastwood‘s insane level of production. While not every film he makes will be gold, his sheer productivity remains astounding. The 88-year-old filmmaker has had an objectively strong filmography over the last 10 years, with “Gran Torino,” “Invictus,” “Sully” and “American Sniper” all becoming hits. However, the misses, including “J. Edgar” and ” 15:17 to Paris” still feel like interesting projects, even if misguided. While many thought “15:17” would be the Eastwood film of 2018, here comes the trailer for “The Mule” to release later this year.

The slow burn pace of the trailer helps to build tension, especially the first 45 seconds of the trailer. Eastwood’s return to the screen as an actor is his first performance in earnest (he cameoed in “American Sniper”) since “Trouble with the Curve” in 2012. It’s been some time, but as soon as he appears on screen, it is unmistakable why he remains an icon. The meta-commentary through the trailer is also unmistakable, with the repetition of “this is the last one” echoing throughout. Considering his illustrious career, this feels more in-line with what we expect out of the final Eastwood performance.

In addition to Eastwood, the cast for “The Mule” filled out nicely. The one to watch is Bradley Cooper, who may have another strong performance in him this year. If he can break into the supporting actor race in a meaningful way, look for him to potentially Clooney his way into an Oscar. Dianne WiestTaissa FarmigaLaurence Fishburne, and Michael Peña round out the cast. “The Mule” may be the one we didn’t see coming until it was on our doorstep.

What do you think of the trailer for “The Mule?” Can Eastwood win an Oscar with his final role? Let us hear your thoughts in the comments below! 

“The Mule” releases on Dec. 14, 2018. Warner Bros. distributes. 

Be sure to check out the Official Oscar Predictions Page to see where “The Mule” ranks among the contenders!