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Still shot from the movie: Gran Torino.

Gran Torino

Walt Kowalski (Clint Eastwood) is a Korean War vet growing older and grumpier with each passing day. So when his young Asian neighbor (Bee Vang), who is involved with a street gang, tries to steal his 1972 Gran Torino, he responds with gun threats. While Walt isn't surprised that this declaration of war makes him an enemy of the local hoodlums, he isn't prepared for the hero's praise he receives from the family next door. Suddenly the man is forced to face prejudices that pre-date his prized car. Get the movie review and more. »

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Overall: C+
Violence: D+
Sexual Content: B-
Language: D+
Drugs/Alcohol: C-
Run Time: 117
Theater Release: 08 Dec 2008
Video Release: 09 Jun 2009
MPAA Rating: R
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How We Determine Our Grades

After watching a movie with your children or students, we encourage parents and teachers to look for education opportunities to teach with movies. Here are a few discussion topics that can help with lesson plans or teaching in the home.

Walt’s neighborhood is made up of many immigrants including Walt’s own family, who have a Polish ancestry, and his Irish barber. Does Walt take that into consideration when he forms an opinion about the new arrivals on his street? Why is it easy to judge all people from a specific race, ethnic group or religious denomination as being the same? Why is this a dangerous assumption?

What has hindered Walt’s relationship with his children? How does that change with Thao and Sue?

What challenges do immigrants face? What kinds of programs or involvement from local citizens can lessen the difficulty for new arrivals?

 

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About the Reviewer: Kerry Bennett

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