"Gran Torino," Clint Eastwood, Film Review
Vilely sentimental. Has quite a few jokes, but most involve calling Asians racist names to their faces – for example, "I'll have a bit more of that good gook food."
WARNING: CONTAINS SPOILERS
Its attempts to show that it is engaging hard with important issues in life involve the telling of horrific war stories and the sight of a studious girl being brutally beaten and raped.
So, is there anything good about it? Well, a few things…
Nice touch that we only get to see the car being driven at the very end, having been present throughout the film.
"Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone," is quite a memorable line.
Clint's character has the idea of nailing crime by the sacrifice of himself once he discovers he has a fatal illness, which is also quite a neat idea.
As is the fact that he is shot going for his lighter, after being repeatedly told to quit the cancer sticks.
But despite the odd nice touch of plotting, most of it is unwatchably bad. For example, the teaching of the young lad into the ways of men, and the dialogue about how to do 'man talk' are terrible, ditto for pretty much all the scenes involving the priest.
Most of the time it feels like a Republican advert: 'Look after yourself and your neighbourhood.' 'Help out the poor people who live near you… if they prove themselves worthy of help by your own standards.' 'Work hard and earn possessions.'
Personal Score: 1/10
This is part of a series of film reviews where I give my comments on IMDB Top 250 films as a writer. The idea is that over time these posts will build into a wide-ranging writing resource.
For more details about the approach I've taken, including some important points about its strengths and weaknesses (I make no claims about my abilities as a film critic or even the accuracy of my comments... but I do stand by the value of a writer's notes on interesting films), see my introductory post here.