Gran Torino, 2008


No action thriller, this. It may even seem somewhat slow at times, but a shadow of Dirty Harry is back! Still, that isn’t the focus or scope of this movie. What it is, is a careful and heartbreaking study of the human condition as seen in the life and circumstances of a man now old and alone (but at one time a soldier in the Korean war, and later a family man working toward the American dream), weathered with time and having no expectations from the retired life he leads. If anything, the loneliness and grief of loss of his wife is more than good reason to have embraced a cynicism, nay, a disdain for everything and everyone around him. Until the most unlikely of people enter his life, and despite all resistance to their friendly advance, things begin to change.

From within such an unlikely setup, comes forth a most startling truth: the bonds of blood are meaningless where there is no love. However, where love, compassion and consideration abound, life is renewed, nay, resurrected, and one is left in awe of the fact that nothing else in common is needed either– no blood ties, no commonalities of culture, race, age, language or anything else really matter.


So strong is the human connection that is rooted in love that the ultimate sacrifice is gladly made for a mere friend– without apology or regret. 

Oh, BTW, that Gran Torino is a fine-looking car– if you care about cars, that is.

And please, somebody, give that 70+ year old actor with a 50-year acting career to his name another Oscar, please!









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