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Author Topic: GRAN TORINO: Reviews and Features in the Media  (Read 129282 times)
Lucky Punk
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« Reply #160 on: January 27, 2009, 05:17:00 AM »

I've just discovered a Walter who may have inspired Mr Kowalski

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Walterdummy.PNG
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palooka
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« Reply #161 on: January 28, 2009, 01:14:16 AM »

http://www.time.com/time/arts/article/0,8599,1874052,00.html?cnn=yes

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This year's Oscar story lines have already been etched in stone — Mickey Rourke as the comeback kid, Slumdog Millionaire as the art-house wunderkind, Milk as the timely social commentary (released three weeks after Proposition 8 passed in California). Yet while the critics have been fussing over wrestlers and Mumbai quiz shows, audiences have been flocking to Gran Torino — an Oscar outcast that's been doing laps around the competition at the box office. At some point this week, the Clint Eastwood drama will pass the $100 million mark, easily surpassing the box-office receipts brought in by not only some of the Oscar front-runners (Slumdog Millionaire now totals $56 million, Milk $21 million) but also Eastwood's last Oscar winner, Million Dollar Baby.


"It's an amazing story that no one's really talking about," says Paul Dergarabedian, box-office analyst with Hollywood.com. "For a movie starring a 78-year-old to have a $29 million opening weekend in wide release, and in the process to beat out the likes of Anne Hathaway in Bride Wars, I don't know if I've seen that before ... It's a testament to how people still feel about Clint Eastwood."

Originally released Dec. 12 in only six theaters and hyped by Warner Bros. as a major-awards contender, the film won Eastwood early recognition by the National Board of Review as Best Actor, but that's been the exception to the rule. At the glitzy Golden Globes, Gran Torino was mentioned in just one category: original song. When the Oscar nominees were unveiled last week, Gran Torino was shut out of the competition completely. (See TIME's top 10 films of 2008.)

It is certainly one of the least likely blockbusters in some time. Starring Eastwood as a crotchety widower living in Detroit's Highland Park neighborhood — a veteran of the Korean War who eyes his Hmong neighbors suspiciously and launches into racist tirades when provoked — Gran Torino was filmed on location in a mere five weeks on a slim budget of $35 million. The majority of its Hmong characters were played by nonprofessionals. In addressing such tumultuous issues as racial strife, gang warfare and urban blight, it can hardly be categorized as escapist entertainment.

"The film confronts issues that are very timely, from racial violence to economic struggles. It's a working-class world that we may not see all that often in blockbusters, but it's something a good many people can relate to," says Karie Bible, an analyst with Exhibitor Relations. Surely Eastwood could not have predicted, when he first set out to make the film, that Detroit's economic woes would be making national headlines by the time Gran Torino arrived in theaters (his character is a retired Ford assembly-plant worker), nor that the movie would be launching into wide release the same day the U.S. government released the darkest unemployment report in 16 years.

Audiences, though, have embraced the film's realism. Bible's firm projects that the title will soar north of $150 million before it leaves theaters — making Gran Torino the biggest haul ever for an Eastwood film. By then, it may well pass the box-office totals posted last year by such summer tent poles as Mamma Mia!, The Incredible Hulk and Sex and the City. "Slumdog and The Wrestler are these Cinderella stories that have overshadowed Gran Torino, and yet here is another Cinderella story all its own," Dergarabedian says. "You look at Eastwood, and here he is directing Changeling, which got Angelina Jolie her Oscar nomination, and starring in this blockbuster where he proves again that he's one of the biggest box-office stars. To become a leading man again at 78, I think it's a story that's unparalleled in cinema."

Eastwood has been quoted as saying that this could mark his last outing as an actor. If that's true, he will be going out on top.

« Last Edit: January 28, 2009, 07:34:50 AM by KC » Logged

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.
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« Reply #162 on: January 28, 2009, 07:35:21 AM »

Thanks for posting that, Palooka. I edited your post to format the quoted material as a quote. :)
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« Reply #163 on: January 28, 2009, 03:00:10 PM »

 :)  " SBIFF ’09: The Good, the Bad, and the Arch-Conservative "

         A Look at Clint Eastwood’s Aesthetic Life
 
         Tuesday, January 27, 2009
         By D.J. Palladino

         http://www.independent.com/news/2009/jan/27/sbiff-09-good-bad-and-arch-conservative/
       
         
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If you’re reading this in newsprint, you’re probably old enough to have once considered Clint Eastwood a reactionary creep. “The action genre has always had a fascist potential,” said Pauline Kael, reviewing Dirty Harry in 1971. “And it surfaces in this movie.” Remember, Eastwood emerged as what is now commonly called an “icon” in the late 1960s, leaping from his pungent television role as Rowdy Yates on Rawhide about the same time the core movie-going group was announcing the dawning of the Age of Aquarius. (I remember friends dropping acid to watch him in Sergio Leone movies, but that’s another story.) In a time of love and peace, decidedly antiwar at least, he was a man with no name and a long-pistolled cop who unapologetically used vigilante techniques to override a weak-kneed justice system—and, was applauded by the silent majority. To me, that man was a guilty pleasure at best. He had fans from the beginning, though. Or at least after his dicey debuts in the 1955 “classics” Francis in the Navy and Revenge of the Creature. Between Leone’s glacially long close-up shots and Don Siegel’s Dirty Harry kill shots, Eastwood was something like the last of the craggy adventurers descended from John Wayne. (It’s telling that he first met Wayne in 1968 at the Republican convention.) But even those precious love-dominated years demanded Western heroes, and as the subsequent decades passed, Eastwood’s public stature grew as our tolerance for mayhem and escapism spread At first, his roles remained laconic—prone to shoot first and sort it out later. Walt Coogan, Private Kelly, and Josey Wales were not significantly different from each other and, though it seems blasphemous to say it, could’ve been played satisfactorily by Charles Bronson or James Coburn. Later, as he “grew” into comedic parts like Philo Beddoe in the chimp and trucker buddy movies like Every Which Way But Loose, his relationship with critics remained truculent, while his international mass popularity ballooned, even in the low Reagan-iffic eras when Heartbreak Ridge (1986) and Firefox (1982) redefined him as our frontline against the Evil Empire
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As a director, however, Eastwood’s critical estimation hardly ever suffered. He began directing right away, in fact—he claims to have stepped in for Leone, directing sequences of A Fistful of Dollars when the Italian auteur was ailing. But Eastwood’s first big splash was the nerve-rattling Play Misty for Me (1971). And though there are more than a few “meh” films among the 31 he’s made, very few of them are terrible. And some, mostly those made in the last two decades, have been astoundingly good—Unforgiven (1992), Mystic River (2003), and Million Dollar Baby (2004), most notably.Only Woody Allen can claim anything like it for lifetime acting/directing output, and his hits are bigger, but his misses are, too. For sheer adventurousness, Eastwood can hardly be matched by any young director working—the two Iwo Jima movies were not great, but the impulse to take them on was. This last year’s output—Changeling and Gran Torino—brings him to an unmatched creative pitch. The only comparable directors are the Coens, who made No Country for Old Men and Burn After Reading back to back. But there are two of them. And, yes, before applying the I-word yet again, let’s reiterate: There is only one icon named Eastwood. (He’s a refrain in an Adam Ant song, the title of a Gorillaz song, and a smirky character in Back to the Future III—his poncho and cigarillo ought to be trademarked.) But the streak of conservative values that helped to define him hasn’t disappeared as his directorial virtues have gotten more renowned. I always thought, much as I like it, that Unforgiven was a con job. Preach all you want about the wrongs of violence, but the film ends in a satisfying blood bath. Likewise, Mystic River concludes by asserting that might makes right and street justice prevails even among Boston’s lace curtain Irish
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And Gran Torino, well, don’t get me started. You can see it as a Shakespearean Tempest’s Prospero-like conclusion to a career. Eastwood plays himself again (doesn’t he always?), a growling racist addicted to cutting down bullies. And it’s genuinely a funny film, which critics don’t often mention. But what’s with the Christ-like allegory at the end? His character Kowalski’s abnegated way of circumventing gangland revenges seems noble, but it wouldn’t have been necessary if he hadn’t started in on the Hmong street gang in the first place. So when he leaves the GT to Tao, Kowalski—and I have to assume Eastwood—is leaving a legacy of tough-minded resignation to the violence that lives on in America.

This would be Eastwood’s legacy, from the nameless stranger to the racist neighbor. Eastwood did not fit in with a hippie zeitgeist, obviously. And as much as I wish that peace could be given a chance in Eastwood’s ethos, I still respect the man, actor, and director for not only making five decades of movies completely consistent with his own philosophy, but because he made some of them great with craft.

He also made a fistful of dollars, but he never really sold himself out.

4•1•1
 

    Clint Eastwood will be presented with the Modern Master Award on Thursday, January 29, at the Arlington Theatre.

    Related Links

    More SBIFF coverage
    Complete SBIFF schedule
    Josef Woodard reviews Gran Torino
    Gran Torino Soundtrack a Masterpiece













« Last Edit: January 28, 2009, 03:07:39 PM by higashimori » Logged

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« Reply #164 on: January 29, 2009, 07:40:37 PM »

The Itacan Online link

Eastwood film uses vintage symbol to modernize vital social message
By Ben Tietz Senior Writer | January 29th, 2009

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The self-congratulatory slant that smothers perfectly ordinary Hollywood “message” films has inoculated audiences towards sincerity, making them somewhat averse to blatant emotion. It transcends genre. Comedies have to be deadpan and close to reality; dramas have to be austere and overly mannered; and action films have to have tortured heroes. Escapism is no longer the name of the game. Audiences want to recognize themselves within every character, and editorialization of the situation feels like the worst kind of audience manipulation.

Clint Eastwood’s “Gran Torino” is unabashedly manipulative, perhaps to the extent that audiences unaccustomed to the dynamics of classical drama may find the film archaic and overwrought. This blending of weighty Catholic guilt, observational comedy and deconstruction of Eastwood’s own “Dirty Harry” franchise, however, is like a sharp blow to the gut, knocking one sideways with off-kilter humor and the realization that Eastwood may have made the first film to typify the era of President Barack Obama. ...

The Gran Torino in the film is a beautiful throwback to the days in which beauty was created for the sake of it. Part of what makes “Gran Torino” such a radical film is that Eastwood never romanticizes his character and never asks for him to be forgiven. Instead, he uses it to make a film that speaks to America’s divisive nature, which can be channeled throughout hatred, mean-spirited wisecracks or even violence. Eastwood is able to encompass all of these viewpoints to create a film sure to be seen as a perfect time capsule for what America feels at this moment of monumental change.
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Perry
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« Reply #165 on: January 30, 2009, 01:06:52 PM »


 GT has just went over 100 mill Box Office Gross and by Sunday it should surpass " In The Line Of Fire" as Eastwood's biggest movie which is quite remarkable. I dont think anyone in the History of Cinema at age 78 has done that. I can be wrong but I doubt it.
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The Schofield Kid
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« Reply #166 on: January 30, 2009, 10:22:54 PM »

http://www.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/story/0,,24984453-5001030,00.html

Again sorry if this has been posted before. Hopefully I'll finally get to see this film on Monday, then I can read all these reviews and members comments.
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« Reply #167 on: February 01, 2009, 05:05:34 PM »

For this past weekend, Box Office Mojo is reporting a fifth place finish for Gran Torino. Total gross is now ...

$110,547,000  :D

http://www.boxofficemojo.com/weekend/chart/?yr=2009&wknd=05&p=.htm
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« Reply #168 on: February 01, 2009, 05:29:41 PM »

Hey  Everyone...

Here is a link to take a look at. Clint Eastwood did filming of Gran Torino at a local Detrot VFW...a few picks and some info. http://vfw6756.org/

Just can't wait until Gran Torino comes out on Blu-Ray...

« Last Edit: February 01, 2009, 05:33:24 PM by PMFM » Logged
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« Reply #169 on: February 01, 2009, 07:57:11 PM »

"Clint Westwood" ???
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« Reply #170 on: February 02, 2009, 05:39:26 AM »

"Clint Westwood" ???

yeah...wonder where that person has lived in the last few years ;D

Great pics of Clint in the slide show.
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Dan Dassow
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« Reply #171 on: February 02, 2009, 09:13:01 AM »

yeah...wonder where that person has lived in the last few years ;D

Great pics of Clint in the slide show.

It must be due to Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome due to serving at the
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Detrot VFW
  :P

Out of curiousity I did a Google search on "Clint Westwood" and was surprised to get 8,940 matches.
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« Reply #172 on: February 07, 2009, 09:52:57 AM »

I liked that review so much.

http://litcine.blogspot.com/2008/12/gran-torino.html

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It's hard speaking of the interpretations of Gran Torino, trying to avaliate the co-stars that had the tough mission of "leading" a so mind-blowing acting as Clint Eastwood's. The actor develops his character in a so visceral, organic and convincing way that you just can't get him out of the picture. He is the axle of the narrative, the pillar of a movie made with care and with the hands of a craftsman. Gran Torino reminds those exemplaries of old times, that didn't need big intricate tricks to hold the attention of the audience. Some people may accuse him for having a conventional plot, or of being methodical, which in my opinion isn't true.


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Some subtexts make the movie even more interesting and Clint character even more human. If it is going to win Oscar or something, I don't know, but Clint Eastwood deserves all the awards he can get, because of the life he has dedicated to the art of the movie-making, to those pieces of quality and depth. If this is his farewell job as an actor, I just have to thank and applaud him for all the work that he've made all over those years, bringing to life so many different characters and culminating in this one, who is a masterpiece and who resides in a so beautiful and well done movie.
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« Reply #173 on: February 08, 2009, 05:47:48 PM »

For the first time since opening wide, Gran Torino fell out of the top five grossers this past weekend; it came in at #7. But its total gross is now up to ... drumroll ...

$120,280,000  :D

http://www.boxofficemojo.com/weekend/chart/?yr=2009&wknd=06&p=.htm
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« Reply #174 on: February 08, 2009, 06:21:52 PM »

http://www.webwombat.com.au/entertainment/movies/australian-box-office-results.htm

Australian Box Office results. Not sure when this chart was updated but Gran Torino has taken almost $5 million in 2 weeks.
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« Reply #175 on: February 11, 2009, 07:11:10 PM »

The Press Association link

Eastwood: I'm still learning at 78

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Clint Eastwood insists that he's still learning at 78, or he would have quit filmmaking.

The Oscar-winning director and acting legend - who's at the helm of and stars in new flick Gran Torino - revealed he'd retire if he got bored.

Eastwood said: "I hadn't planned on doing much more acting, really. I said a few years ago, 'I don't think I'll act any more, I'll stay behind the camera.'

"And then Million Dollar Baby came along and I liked that role, so I said, 'I think I'll do this role because I'm right for it', and then I did Gran Torino. It had a role that was my age, and the character seemed like it was tailored for me, even though it wasn't.

"The message from the story was great - it shows that you're never too old to learn. And that's why I'm still working at 78, because I like learning something new all the time, and every time you do a project, you learn new things. That makes it fun.

"When it's not fun, you won't see me doing it any more."

The Changeling director feels he learns from the young talent he works with.

He said: "Directing is a great thing. That's one of the reasons why I, in my senior years, do this kind of thing - hide behind the camera and let the young people jump and run with the ball."

Clint said he's always "amazed" at how good some of the young thesps are "because it took me forever to learn how to say my own name".

Gran Torino opens on February 20.
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« Reply #176 on: February 12, 2009, 05:51:27 PM »

 :)  " Tucker M’s Movie Review:  Gran Torino  "

        http://www.spooneradvocate.com/articles/2009/02/11/community/doc4989a806f02de290172685.txt

       
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When I heard that Clint Eastwood was starring and directing a new movie, I got excited.

I haven’t seen any of his Dirty Harry movies in the past, but, I did happen to see Million Dollar Baby. I thought Clint did a great job in that movie; however, I hate Hillary Swank as an actress, but that’s a different story.
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This movie was the best movie I’ve seen in a very long time.

Clint Eastwood shows his rough side but also shows his caring, compassionate side to the audience.
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The movie had me laughing and it also had me quiet during the serious parts.

The crowd I was with in Rice Lake also thoroughly enjoyed the movie.

I heard many comments while walking out of the theater – people saying how great this movie was or I want to see it again.

I’ve seen the movie more than one time and I’m glad I’ve seen it as much as I have because it’s worth the ~2 hour running time.

Gran Torino was recognized by the American Film Institute as one of the Ten Best Films of 2008.

As of January 28, 2009, the film had taken in around $100 million at the box office .

The Los Angeles Times also praised Eastwood’s performance and credibility as an action hero at the age of 78.

Kenneth Turan said of Eastwood’s performance, “It is a film that is impossible to imagine without the actor in the title role. The notion of a 78-year-old action hero may sound like a contradiction in terms, but Eastwood brings it off, even if his toughness is as much verbal as physical. Even at 78, Eastwood can make 'Get off my lawn' sound as menacing as ‘Make my day,’ and when he says ‘I’ll blow a hole in your face and sleep like a baby,’ he sounds as if he means it.”

I would highly recommend seeing this movie because it really is a great movie to see; however, it’s not a movie for the kids.

Gran Torino is rated R for the language throughout, and there is some violence in the movie.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2009, 08:47:32 PM by KC » Logged

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« Reply #177 on: February 12, 2009, 08:51:52 PM »

Thanks, higashimori. Your formatting was a little off so I fixed it for you. :)
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higashimori
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« Reply #178 on: February 13, 2009, 02:45:05 PM »

Thanks, higashimori. Your formatting was a little off so I fixed it for you. :)

 :)  Hi, KC !    Though I knew it , I did not have time to correct it .  :-[   And I thought that you did help me as usual !  8)   Thank you very much , KC !  O0
« Last Edit: February 13, 2009, 02:46:15 PM by higashimori » Logged

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« Reply #179 on: February 13, 2009, 09:33:11 PM »

Well, that's what Mods are for! :)
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