It started out in typical Eastwood style: I hated the bigoted and bitter man he portrayed, Walt Kowalski, who had just buried his wife and lives in a sad depressed Michigan town next door to an extended Hmong family. Eastwood may be 78, but he still plays a very impressive disgusting bad guy. Walt's prize possession is a 1972 Gran Torino he keeps polished and shiny in his garage.
In a series of events, Walt befriends Thao and Sue, two Hmong teenagers in the family next door. Walt showed his disgust of the Hmong matriarch by spitting on his lawn while sending her dirty looks, and she answers him by spitting out an even larger wad. Before long, Walt realizes that a Hmong gang will never leave Thao alone, that he is doomed to join them or die. The gang members taunt and torture Thao. What made this such a spiritual movie to me was the imperceptible journey from contempt to friendship that happened with Walt and Thao. There are also some very funny and poignant parts. An excerpt from Wikipedia of the New York Times Review:
Dirty Harry is back, in a way, in Gran Torino, not as a character but as a ghostly presence. He hovers in the film, in its themes and high-caliber imagery, and of course most obviously in Mr. Eastwood’s face. It is a monumental face now, so puckered and pleated that it no longer looks merely weathered, as it has for decades, but seems closer to petrified wood.Roger Ebert wrote that the film is "about the belated flowering of a man's better nature. And it's about Americans of different races growing more open to one another in the new century." But the scene I woke up remembering last night was the scene at the end, when you realize that Walt saw that he could still make a difference in the lives of people he cherished, and that without him a favorable outcome was almost impossible to imagine. The movie ends on a positive note, and everyone got what they deserved. Even Walt. I'm interested to know what others thought of the movie.
We saw it quite awhile ago and thought it was harsh until halfway through when you could see him bonding to the kids and his softer side coming out. It really was awesome how it ends and an old thought runs through my mind: You can't pick your family, but you can pick your friends. Sometimes friends make better family!ReplyDelete
It sounds like a really good movie but I haven't seen it yet so I can't really comment.ReplyDelete
This is on my list of movies to see. Most Eastwood movies have good content. Your review has moved this higher up on my to do list.ReplyDelete
I haven't seen the movie, but have wanted to see it for a while. I'm glad you shared the great info.ReplyDelete
Haven't heard of it but will try to find a copy here. DJ thank you so much for visiting my blog, yes, it's been six months and I have posted a hundred blogs, and without all of you maybe I will never reached this number. I don't count comments, I understand if some people can't visit my blog, it happens sometimes which happens to me too. I like your positive attitude, and even if we don't see each other in the real world, I feel happy to be with you and all of you in the cyberworld, there's no difference between real friends and bloggy friends, really.ReplyDelete
I'll put it on my Netflix queue. I was going to pass on it because I thought it might end badly or have too much violence. For some reason I am very sensitive to violence lately, preferring to pass on those movies for fun ones.ReplyDelete
I loved the movie too. The message that we can all change, no matter what age, is inspiring. We see too much ignorance and intolerance of others in this world. We live in scary times. Nice thoughtful post DJReplyDelete
It's a wonderful movie and I'm glad to hear you agree. The amount of violence is only what is necessary to tell the story. However, Phyllis was unable to finish watching Shawshank Redemption (another wonderful movie) due to its limited scenes of violence, so I won't even ask her to watch Gran Torino. I needed to share the story with her, though, so I simply told it to her to the best of my ability.ReplyDelete
I'll have to check it out. I'm a big fan of happy endings, or rather, endings that tie everything together.ReplyDelete