Thursday, January 22, 2009

Gran Torino

I decided to brush off some of my Pine View High School newspaper skills and write a review of a film we saw last weekend in St George. I am a huge Clint Eastwood fan and so I dragged my wife and mother to see Clint's latest movie Gran Torino.

To fully appreciate Gran Torino one must realize that this may be the third time Clint has saved the western. I know what you are saying, "I thought this was a movie about an old guy not wanting people on his lawn in Michigan." On the surface it is, but deeper this film is really a western set in the current day.
I say that this is the third time we have seen Eastwood revive the western because at its heart Gran Torino is a western. The very name Gran Torino, although referring to a classic car in this case, could easily fall in line with film titles like Rio Bravo. This movie could well have been made as a Sergio Leone western. If you had substituted the Hmong gang for a pack of Mexican Bandits or renegade Apaches, made Walt Kowalski (Eastwood's character) a civil war veteran haunted by his past and having a hard time adapting to the current world he now lives in the story line would make an excellent cowboy movie.

In the 1970’s when the western was lagging in popularity, it was Eastwood who rode to the rescue wi th the film The Outlaw Josie Wales. In the early 90’s when critics had declared the western dead Clint gave us Unforgiven. Recently Brokeback Mountain accomplished what no film had done before. It reshaped what an audience sees when they look at a cinematic cowboy. It deconstructed our classic idea of film cowboys that in large part was shaped by actors and directors like Eastwood.

Gran Torino reminds me of westerns and revives the Hollywood tough guy. Eastwood's Walt Kowalski is Bill Munny (Unforgiven) or Josey Wales (The Outlaw Josey Wales). He is a character pushed beyond his limits in a world he no longer knows. He may not be likable or do the right thing, but he will destory those who cross him or someone he cares about. Justice will be served. Gran Torino reminds us of those western movie heroes.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

GO STEELERS!!!!!!!!!

WOOHOO WE ARE GOING TO THE SUPERBOWL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was thinking it was time for another ring 5 just isn't enough! It's funny I grew up in Pittsburgh but didn't get into the Steelers spirit until I married a Bears fan from Utah. Now I get really excited and I am working on my trash talk. I think trash talking may be my favorite part about being a football fan and rooting for the Steelers makes it easy. When you root for the best team you always have something to say! GO STEELERS!!!!