Every now and then a movie or book creeps up on me and jumps up out of nowhere to shout, "Surprise!" Clint Eastwood's "Gran Torino" was like that -- completely off my radar until I saw it with Lou, and then I loved it. Actually, the movie I wanted to see that day was an Indie movie at the Film Forum called "Wendy and Lucy." I knew it was something about a girl and her dog, but after looking into it more closely I realized it might be a little darker than I could handle on that particular day, so I decided to go with Lou's movie choice instead.
"Gran Torino" is the opposite of a chick movie, so what do we call that: a dude movie? The thing is, I think most girls would love it, too. I was captivated by it, initially because the character Eastwood plays -- a throw-back Korean War era veteran - was so much like my dad (WWII), but later because of the story line itself. It wasn't formulaic like so many movies I've seen recently, and it really delivers an emotional punch. I also can't recall a director/actor who can find a way to have a character say the kinds of politically incorrect things Eastwood's character says and still have everyone in the theater love the guy. It amazed me.
If you are looking for a movie to see over your holiday break, take a chance on this one and let me know what you think.