Essay on Gran Torino

1169 Words 5 Pages
Growing old and/or aging are notions many find difficult to tolerate and the prejudices this age group faces are complex. Nevertheless, despite a negative representation of the elderly in film, they do serve a purpose. On the big screen we continue to see many adverse principles of ageism yet in reality many of the characters are solid figures that ‘Still have the Right Stuff” as lectured by Professor Gleberzon, PHD . Clint Eastwood dispels the myth of ageism and illustrates he still has the right stuff in the movie, Gran Torino (2008).

The smash-hit at the box office, Gran Torino (2008) exposes and defends against ageism conventions although many believe the underlying themes are those of racism, bigotry and
redemption.
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In contrast, Walt’s snubbing the Priest’s age and marginal life experience, shows his lack of admiration for the Catholic Church. Walt lacks confidence in Father Janovich mainly because of his age, being fresh out of the seminary and having little practice. He feels the
Priest does not have the necessary skill set to assist him in his own journey however as the movie progresses, we see his perspective alter in regards to the priest.

In the beginning, we see signs of physical aging, but as the movie evolves, we see
Walt did have the right stuff. When Thao or “Toad” as Walt calls him, must steal Walt’s pride and joy, “The Gran Torino”, we see Walt’s vulnerable side. Physical signs of aging include a decline in flexibility and endurance and we see this in Walt’s encounter with Thao in the garage.
In contrast, with the chance meeting with Sue, his heroism, powerful strength and persona is valued. His character is no longer seen as a feeble old man.
“As an initiation, Thao is asked to steal Walt’s prized 1972 Ford Gran Torino. He botches the attempt, as Walt, rather stumblingly, chases him out of his garage with his M1 rifle. Later, Thao’s sister, Sue (Ahney Her) is set upon by some stereotypically predatory young black man and Walt, brandishing a pistol,

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