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Gran Torino [videorecording]
Lorenz, Robert
Adult Fiction Drama GRAN

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62triplet said:
(2008) 80% (%) 00) NYT Critics' Pick http://movies.nytimes.com/2008/12/12/movies/12tori.html?scp=2&sq=gran torino&st=cse * * * * "See my profile for the key to this code" * * * * SYNOPSIS: "Walt Kowalski is a widower who holds onto his prejudices despite the changes in his Detroit, Michigan neighborhood and the world around him. Walt is a grumpy, tough-minded, unhappy old man, who can't get along with either his kids or his neighbors. He is a Korean War veteran whose prize possession is a 1972 Gran Torino he keeps in mint condition. When his neighbor, Thao, a young Hmong teenager, becomes pressured by his gang member cousin to steal Walt's car, Kowalski reluctantly sets out to reform the youth. Drawn against his will into the life of Thao's immigrant family, Walt is soon taking steps to protect them from the gangs that infest their neighborhood." CONSENSUS: "The kind of movie Don Siegel and Sam Fuller used to make, a blunt but perceptive slice of American discontent filtered through the prism of B-movie conventions.....starts as one thing, then becomes something else entirely." MOTIVATION FOR ME TO SEE: An article in the StarTrib about a local Hmong actor playing a central role in the film, plus the always interesting Clint in the last years of a great career, made this a must-see. MY THOUGHTS: Many areas of the Twin Cities have undergone similar demographic change as featured here, and I'm sure parts of the story resonate with many. Late in the movie, you catch a glimpse of Harry Callahan, but Walt's final solution is nothing that Dirty Harry would have thought up. A drawback for me were the many times Clint was talking, under his breath, to let the audience know what he was thinking - a few times would be o.k., but not this many. Lots of foreshadowing, and few surprises, but, for me, Clint is always watchable. As the NYT review states, Clint is "remaking the classic hero, here in the beginning of the 21st century, perhaps for the last time." [New purchase by HCL]
posted Jul 12, 2009 at 11:00AM
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