Gran Torino review

Gran Torino, the story of a fiercely independent widower bonding with a Hmong family who are harassed by a gang from their own community, can be quite gritty, but it is also hilariously funny in places. It offers a lot of depth and the story, following the turn-around of the main character’s racial prejudices and growing love for his new family, is both touching and gripping. The script itself is very well written with some fantastic dialogue and numerous memorable one-liners that are destined to become classic movie quotes.

The supporting cast are patchy but more than passable for most of the film, but Clint Eastwood delivers what could possibly be the best performance of his illustrious career as the ultimate Grumpy Old Man. It is all the more impressive that, not to mention baffling how, he can both star in and direct a film of this quality. At the age of 78!

It is extremely surprising and completely ridiculous that this film was ignored for major awards such as the Oscars. In any review of films from the past year, Gran Torino would not only sit very comfortably indeed alongside considerations for the likes of best director and best actor but look incredibly daunting to challengers for best film.

5 out of 5

27th Feb 2009

Comments

I watched this last night - it was good. Plot wise it was very good, as was the direction.

However, I thought the acting wasn't too good. The young asian actors in particular, and Clint also seemed a bit forced.

I liked the song at the end, after Clint stopped singing and Jamie Cullum took over.

3.5/5

Matt Sephton, 16th Mar 2009

Although I thought Eastwood's acting was impeccable, I know what you mean about the Asian actors.

I thought the girl was good, but the boy less-so, especially when he showed anger later in the film.

It wasn't too noticable for me, though, and it didn't hinder my enjoyment.

Patrick Griffiths, 16th Mar 2009

I've given it more thought and actually i think Clint was good, after I got used to how old he was in character and real life. The issue I had was with the growl he did, which I understand was his character but just really annoyed me as it didn't sound believable.

With the Asian actors - I think voice acting skills were lacking slightly more than their physical acting skills.

Still, an enjoyable film.

Matt Sephton, 16th Mar 2009

Finally saw this last night, albeit via DVD on my shitty laptop.

It's really refreshing to see a film that lives up to its reputation and Gran Torino is certainly one of those films.

A lot of people called this Dirty Harry in retirement, but for me this felt like more of a modern western.

One of those films that I'd be happy to watch again several times. Good stuff.

Daz, 19th Feb 2010