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EASTWOOD'S GRAN TORINO


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Considering that Clint Eastwood's most iconic roles have been serious ones, it's easy to forget that he can be funny — that he possesses terrific timing with his sly sense of humor.

 

He grumbles and growls his way through his most entertaining performance in years in "Gran Torino" as Walt Kowalski, a Korean War veteran and lifelong auto worker who's disgusted with the changes in his blue-collar, suburban Detroit neighborhood.

 

There are unshakable shades of Dirty Harry here, as well as Frankie Dunn, the curmudgeonly character he played in 2004's "Million Dollar Baby," his most recent screen appearance. At 78, Eastwood combines both the tough and playful sides of his personality — in front of and behind the camera as star and director — with "Gran Torino," which begins in broadly entertaining fashion but ultimately reveals that it has weightier matters on its mind.

 

Contains spoilers:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081210/ap_en_...xUmJJj92sVdDxkF

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"But the real news of the weekend is the Warner Bros' opening of Clint Eastwood's Oscar-buzzed Gran Torino Friday night in 6 theaters (3 in NY, 3 in LA). The drama grossed $75K Friday and $112.5K Saturday for a total $269.6K with the best per screen average -- $47,340 -- of all the weekend films. That's TWICE as much as his Best Picture-winning Million Dollar Baby made on December 17, 2004 in the same theaters ($37,208 total, per screen average $6,201.) "Clint is the man!" a top Warner Bros exec gushed to me this morning. "

 

http://www.deadlinehollywooddaily.com/wkd-...he-holidays-4m/

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Clint To Screenwriters: Make My Play

9 December 2008 1:31 AM, PST

 

 

Clint Eastwood has indicated that reports about his retirement from acting have been greatly exaggerated. "You know, you kind of muse out loud sometimes in front of a journalist, and they kind of put it down as an absolute," Eastwood said as he promoted his latest film Gran Torino on the syndicated Lyons & Bailes Reel Talk, due to air next weekend. "I'm just saying that I'm getting at the point in life at my age where they just don't write that many good roles," he added. He said he often wonders how many good scripts are being written for older actors like himself. "Maybe not that many," he observed.

 

 

http://www.imdb.com/news/ns0000003/#ni0625211

 

This made my day yesterday in so many different ways.

 

Andrew

 

I'm glad to hear that he's not officially retired from acting. I was certain he was when I went to a Q & A screening of IN THE VALLEY OF ELAH last year. Paul Haggis said he offered Clint the lead role and Clint said he was retired from acting. He said something like, "Million Dollar Baby was my last acting role. Can you think of a better way to go out?" Paul couldn't and Clint suggested that he call Tommy Lee Jones.

 

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I saw GRAN TORINO today. While I was not a fan of the screenplay at all - I read it last summer - I enjoyed the film. Clint definitely elevated the material from what was on the page.

 

There is a lot of racist dialogue in this movie and when I read it, I just cringed. But Clint's performance and delivery made me laugh out loud. And I wasn't alone in the theater. While this is a serious, dramatic film, there were as many laughs as PINEAPPLE EXPRESS or ZACK AND MIRI to name a few recent comedies that made me laugh out loud. And I wasn't laughing at the movie. The laughs are clearly intentional and draw you into appreciating Walt Kowalski despite the blatant racism.

 

While this isn't nearly as powerful a performance as Clint's work in MILLION DOLLAR BABY, his performance is strong and compelling. And he uses the persona that we know well and plays off of it in this movie.

 

The supporting cast is good. The brother and sister give very good performances, especially the sister. The actor who plays the priest in the film is terrible at first. I couldn't stand his work in the early scenes. But he has a couple of scenes late in the movie that really work.

 

It was a very enjoyable afternoon at the movies. Clint delivers with this movie something rewarding but completely different from this year's CHANGELING.

 

It's great to see Clint cranking out movies at his age. First the one-two punch of his Iwo Jima films and now these two gems. This movie started shooting last summer and it's already out! I wish more filmmakers could keep up with Clint's recent pace and continuously put out good films.

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  • 2 weeks later...
I saw GRAN TORINO today. While I was not a fan of the screenplay at all - I read it last summer - I enjoyed the film. Clint definitely elevated the material from what was on the page.

 

There is a lot of racist dialogue in this movie and when I read it, I just cringed. But Clint's performance and delivery made me laugh out loud. And I wasn't alone in the theater. While this is a serious, dramatic film, there were as many laughs as PINEAPPLE EXPRESS or ZACK AND MIRI to name a few recent comedies that made me laugh out loud. And I wasn't laughing at the movie. The laughs are clearly intentional and draw you into appreciating Walt Kowalski despite the blatant racism.

 

While this isn't nearly as powerful a performance as Clint's work in MILLION DOLLAR BABY, his performance is strong and compelling. And he uses the persona that we know well and plays off of it in this movie.

 

The supporting cast is good. The brother and sister give very good performances, especially the sister. The actor who plays the priest in the film is terrible at first. I couldn't stand his work in the early scenes. But he has a couple of scenes late in the movie that really work.

 

It was a very enjoyable afternoon at the movies. Clint delivers with this movie something rewarding but completely different from this year's CHANGELING.

 

It's great to see Clint cranking out movies at his age. First the one-two punch of his Iwo Jima films and now these two gems. This movie started shooting last summer and it's already out! I wish more filmmakers could keep up with Clint's recent pace and continuously put out good films.

 

 

Yeah, the movie is good for what it should be

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  • 2 weeks later...
MINNEAPOLIS – Working at a liquor store or a construction site, Nick Schenk developed an ear for realistic dialogue. Eventually he wrote a script on scrap paper while sitting at a blue-collar bar in northeast Minneapolis.

 

That script was turned into "Gran Torino," a new movie directed by and starring Clint Eastwood. The film went into wide release Friday after getting critical raves and National Board of Review awards for Schenk for original script and Eastwood for best actor.

 

Heady stuff for a former fruit truck driver.

 

"It's the jackpot," the 43-year-old Schenk says about the first movie ever made of one of his screenplays.

Continue reading: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090111/ap_en_...qjtyV_7DnswFxkF

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Saw this tonight at the Alamo Drafthouse down here in Austin and loved it! I did NOT expect to LAUGH and laughed my ass off. Clint shows that he is STILL the baddest motherfucker on the planet. Not all the performances were spot on, but it was still a fantastic film and showcased Eastwood in the EXACT kind of role that has made him famous. Simple story and a good one.

 

Hope he picks up a couple awards for this one!!!

 

Fred

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  • 4 weeks later...

 

Finally saw this movie the other day, and all I can say is, WOW!! Clint Eastwood has still got it. This movie packed such an emotional wallop, it blew me away. The inexperience of the young actors was a minor distraction, but Eastwood rocked this movie. This could have been called Dirty Harry: The Golden Years. :P I could see a lot of Dirty Harry in his portrayal of Walt, but at the same time, he was a character unto himself. His unrelenting grip on all things old and familiar, and the slow, begrudging acceptance of the changing times around him was a powerful story. I don't know if this movie was written with him in mind, but it could have been, because after seeing him in the part, I can't imagine anyone else doing it.

 

I loved the scenes between him and young Tao. Beautiful. And the way he slaughtered all of the Hmong names and made up his own names for them was hilarious. (Yum-Yum, Click-clack, ding-dong, and Charlie Chan, OMG!!! :lol: ) The ending was heartwrenching, but not totally unexpected, though it was somewhat satisfying too. I won't say more for those who haven't seen it, but this movie is a definite must-see.

 

Clint deserves all of the recognition he gets for this one, and more. The fact that he was overlooked by the Oscars is a crime! In what will probably be his last, and definitely one of his best performances, the Academy blew its shot to honor him one more time (with an acting award).

 

 

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Score one for the old guys!! Clint and Gran Torino have still got it.

Variety is reporting that Gran Torino was number one at the box office overseas this past weekend, beating second place Watchmen by $5 million in major European markets. The movie on track to become Clint's biggest foreign box office take since Million Dollar Baby and could surpass that one.

 

Foreign audiences love Clint! But then again. who doesn't? :P

 

Yay for Clint! Looks like his acting role may well be one of his biggest box office successes, despite his lackluster reception in the US.

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Score one for the old guys!! Clint and Gran Torino have still got it.

Variety is reporting that Gran Torino was number one at the box office overseas this past weekend, beating second place Watchmen by $5 million in major European markets. The movie on track to become Clint's biggest foreign box office take since Million Dollar Baby and could surpass that one.

 

Foreign audiences love Clint! But then again. who doesn't? :P

 

Yay for Clint! Looks like his acting role may well be one of his biggest box office successes, despite his lackluster reception in the US.

 

Yet more signs that the US audience is retarded.

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Yet more signs that the US audience is retarded.

 

Too true, Fred. Too true. Americans will sit at home and watch brainless reality television, but won't spend a nickel to see quality movies, even with established, seasoned actors who know how to carry a film. And they'll watch all the slick, polished, glossy crap that has no substance rather than a movie with real heart. It's pathetic the state that our society has come to. People just don't care anymore. About anything. Great television shows get cancelled because they can't get decent ratings. Great movies fail because people won't go see them. Shame.

 

 

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  • 2 months later...
Guest AdminGuyX

Finally watched it OnDemand. I didn't like it much. A little bit. The stuff in the barbershop was funny, the construction office was funny, but the performances were just too often too wooden. A lot of the film felt off and uneven for me. It was the supporting performances that just pulled me out of the film scene after scene.

 

It's not a movie about plot twists. It's obvious pretty much from the get-go what they are going for, the only real question for me after the first act was is the third act going to be violent and revenge driven, or would this be a movie about solving problems through peace and love.

 

After he started coughing up blood, and after the scene in the garage, I knew what I was getting. This is NOT Dirty Harry.

 

What bothered me more than anything in this film was the way his family was written.

His family was written to be one dimensional, and I understand the portrayal is meant to be from his point of view, and he doesn't think much of his own family, but what I really wanted was to see some sort of true development on that end. I suppose they ultimately didn't do that because it would have given him something to live for, and they really needed to make sure he didn't have anything to live for, or the end wouldn't have worked.

 

His son's in particular bothered me because they showed none of his personality, and if they reflected how his wife raised his boys, then his wife must have been one annoying human being. I would have enjoyed the film a lot more if the sons had been written to be fully fleshed out, showed some strength of character, and had some of Dad's GRIT. Even, just a hint of it.

 

Opening the film with his wife's funeral was a mistake, because I was expecting to see a man in mourning for at least 5 minutes. He wasn't. Even privately he behaved as if it meant nothing to him that she had recently died. I mean, Ok, I get it he's a hard ass. But even a hard ass breaks down in private when he loses his wife of umpteen years that he adored. And even distant son's with annoying families are not all about getting the house and Gran Torino when the old man dies.

 

I guess I just wanted some kind of bigger redemption for his character that also involved the redemption of his family somehow.

 

I have to admit, when UP has more emotional impact and resonance than a Clint Eastwood drama, I'm worried.

 

 

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