30 December 2008

Boomer Lens: Gran Torino

Yea for the best Christmas movie, or at least best for the Christmas season because it's not actually about Christmas. Clint Eastwood in Gran Torino delivers the anti-hero he is famous for, but also communicates it to younger generations who may not know his film history. At 78, Eastwood can speak to at least two younger generations old enough to enter the R-rated film.

As a boomer, I remember Eastwood in those earlier anti-hero roles. And I also remember cars like the Gran Torino. My Gen X movie partner doesn't have those memories but knows Eastwood from later works, such as Million Dollar Baby and the very recent production Changeling.

These were my boomeresque thoughts during Gran Torino:

<> Eastwood at 78 physically resembles Henry Fonda in his last movies.

<> This film earns its R rating not only for rough language and violence but also for ethnic slurs.

<> Demonizing the protagonist's family is typical in films but rarely justified. After all, what family member would seek association with a foul-mouthed racist grandfather who keeps guns and ammunition in the house?

Those were the only thoughts that I can recall that were not about the story that was unfolding on the screen. That means Gran Torino is nearly fully engaging. Best movie of the season for me.

© 2008 Mary Bold, PhD, CFLE. The content of this blog or related web sites created by Mary Bold (www.marybold.com, www.boldproductions.com, College Intern Blog) is not under any circumstances to be regarded as professional, legal, financial, or medical advice. Or education advice. Or marital advice. Or even a tip.

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