Show MoreGran Torino (Clint Eastwood, 2008) draws attention to the cultural differences between people living in a working class neighborhood in Michigan. An ideology of multiculturalism is promoted as Walt, a heterosexual white man, moves past his prejudices and forms a relationship with his Hmong neighbors. It promotes this ideology, however, without challenging hegemonic white masculinity and has an underlying theme of natural white superiority, as Walt takes on the role of a white savior for this cultural Other..
When Walt Kowalski sees the Lors, a Hmong family moving in next door, he says, “what the hell did these Chinks have to move into this neighborhood for?” This comment echoes the beliefs of extreme right wing new nationalism “defined…show more content…
It also suggests that until people stop regarding cultural differences as a negative thing and begin to see it as one of society’s strengths, there will continue to be conflict. In addition to racial differences, gender differences are a major issue in Gran Torino. In the film, the majority of the lead characters are male, with the exception of Sue. The women who are in the film are mostly portrayed as weak and following typical gender roles, such as when the Hmong women are serving Walt food at the barbeque or shown bringing food to his house. The only purpose Youa serves in the film is becoming Thao’s girlfriend, which is to help him become more manly. Sue stands out from the other women as being strong, outspoken, and independent. When she is harassed by the group of African American males, she stands up for herself and calls out one of the guys as “another asshole who has a fetish for Asian girls”. However, Walt still needs to step in and protect her when she is not strong enough to physically fight them off. She also needs to be rescued by Walt after she is attacked and raped by Spider and his gang. The fact that Sue, despite her fearlessness, must rely on a man to protect her promotes the idea of women’s inferiority to men. This conception is reinforced through Thao, who is
Gran Torino Essay
1008 WordsOct 26th, 20125 Pages
Starter text response: Gran Torino
‘Gran Torino’ is a film full of symbols of hope and redemption. Discuss.
In his film ‘Gran Torino’, Clint Eastwood tells the story of an unlikely relationship between Korean War veteran Walt Kowalski and his Hmong neighbours Thao and Sue. The film explores the possibility of redemption, “second chances”, and the hope that comes from having a positive future. Both Walt and Thao experience redemption in the film. Walt is saved from the guilt of murder and broken relationships. Ultimately, Walt finds “peace” with himself, with others and with God. Walt’s young neighbour Thao is rescued from a future of crime and violence, and the shame of attempted theft. Ultimately, Thao gains a future as a…show more content…
For example, Kennedy the construction supervisor asks Walt when he can have “the keys” to his Gran Torino, and looks down on Thao for getting a lift. Without a car, Thao is dependent and still a boy. When Walt lends him the Gran Torino to take Youa on a date, he is giving Thao independence and the possibility of a girlfriend. Furthermore, the Gran Torino represents being a genuine American man. Walt built the car when he worked for Ford, and despises the “Jap-burners” that his son Mitch drives around in and sells. Likewise, Spider (an ‘anti-citizen’) drives a white Honda in every scene he appears in, except the last one. When Walt leaves the Gran Torino to Thao in his will, he is giving him more than a car. He is giving him a reward for work, a source of prestige, independence, and an American identity. The closing scene of the film shows Thao driving the car down an esplanade, a young man with a future, and hope.
To Walt, the reason he got his medal of valour wasn't for a good reason. It was because he shot a Korean. After the war, Walts was left broken and scarred and especially after Dorothys death, Walt had many issues he needed to solve. Fr suggested he should do a confession and that it would help to heal him. You never really hear about the medal much but at the end of the film when Walt does a confession, even though it wasn’t the confession Fr was expecting, Walt has been healed. He sees what he has to do to serve and