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Rock Street, San Francisco

Gran Torino – A movie not worth missing!
Reviewed by Hana Mach
Everyone remembers a gang of teenagers who always bully you and make you suffer for what you’ve done. In the 2008 movie Gran Torino, there are a gang of teenagers who threaten Walt Kowalski’s (Clint Eastwood) neighbourhood.
Gran Torino is about an old man who fought against the Korean war. The movie is about Walt, a Korean War veteran whose wife has passed away leaving him unhappy, angry, and disappointed towards his family. Walt’s neighbour Thao (Bee Vang), a young Hmong teenager under pressure from his cousin and his gang, tries to steal his Gran Torino. The movie takes place within the Metro Detroit. The movie covers racism and gang violence. I think Walt did a respectable job, because he taught Thao how to talk like a man and how to get a real job, and he learnt a lot of new things about Korean culture. I think Thao did an excellent job playing the role of Walt’s Korean neighbour, because he stood up to his cousin and his gang at times when he wanted to. I didn’t think any of the cast members did a bad job in the movie. I liked the part where Walt stood up and defended for Thao against his cousin and his gang. I also liked the part when even though Walt was suffering from an illness, he kept on fighting though to until the very end. I didn’t really like the part where Walt locked Thao in the basement, because if he didn’t, I think the ending would have been better.

The scene where Thao’s sister Sue (Ahney Her), is talking to his white friend and then bumps into the rude black teens is an example of racial discrimination. In this case, the black people are discriminating the Asian and white people because of their race and colour. When Walt pulled out his finger gun and asked Sue to get in his car, the black people refuse and say no. The sound effects turn silent, then there is army music when Walt pulled the real gun, to express his anger and frustration.

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The scene where Walt is in the hospital is also an example of racial discrimination. He realises that all the other people in the hospital are of different race, and that he was the only white man there. When the Muslim lady called out Walt Kowalski’s name, the expression on his face showed that he was annoyed and frustrated. When he meets the Korean doctor, he leans on the wall because we fought in the Korean war, leaving him feeling disappointed and intimidated.
Thao had a significant impact in Walt’s life. The Gran Torino is a symbol representing the bond Walt had with Thao. In many cultures, cars are passed on to the next generation like a family heirloom. Thao becomes a part of Walt’s family as he gives Thao his Gran Torino. Walt gives Thao his Gran Torino, reminding him that he needs to learn a lot as he grows up as a man.

The message of the movie is that racism shouldn’t be used. Many people say racist things to others, causing them to be depressed and upset. Walt said a lot of racist things towards Asians, but he really got to know them better in the end. The main theme in the film is racial discrimination. I learned that people should not judge someone based on their appearance, for example when Walt called the Asians “gooks” without even knowing their nationality.

right1574800The target audience of this film is towards any age group, because racism is a current issue in society today. I would rate this movie a 4 out of 5 stars, because the story behind the movie was very moving and emotional to me. I did like this movie, because it shows the use of racism, stereotypes and irony and how it can be offensive to people.

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