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Generally favorable reviews - based on 34 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 552 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: Retired auto worker Walt Kowalski fills his days with home repair, beer and monthly trips to the barber. The people he once called his neighbors have all moved or passed away, replaced by Hmong immigrants, from Southeast Asia, he despises. Resentful of virtually everything he sees--Walt isRetired auto worker Walt Kowalski fills his days with home repair, beer and monthly trips to the barber. The people he once called his neighbors have all moved or passed away, replaced by Hmong immigrants, from Southeast Asia, he despises. Resentful of virtually everything he sees--Walt is just waiting out the rest of his life. Until the night someone tries to steal his `72 Gran Torino. The Gran Torino brings his shy teenaged neighbor Thao into his life when Hmong gangbangers pressure the boy into trying to steal it. But Walt stands in the way of both the heist and the gang, making him the reluctant hero of the neighborhood--especially to Thao's mother and older sister, Sue, who insist that Thao work for Walt as a way to make amends. Though he initially wants nothing to do with these people, Walt eventually gives in and puts the boy to work fixing up the neighborhood, setting into motion an unlikely friendship that will change both their lives. (Warner Bros. Pictures) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 34
  2. Negative: 1 out of 34
  1. A movie at once understated and radical, deceptively unremarkable in presentation and ballsy in its earnestness. Don't let the star's overly familiar squint fool you: This is subtle, perceptive stuff.
  2. Eastwood finds the humorous aspects of the character as well, no more so than when the appetite of the widower who lives on beef jerky and Pabst Blue Ribbon becomes the center of attention among the Hmong women cooks.
  3. 88
    It's also a terrific, career-capping role for Eastwood, who claims he's now retired as an actor. He shows off his comic chops more fully than in any film since "Bronco Billy" more than a quarter-century ago.
  4. This movie seems even rougher around the edges than much of his past work. Still, it's hard to resist.
  5. 70
    Until Gran Torino starts rumbling headlong toward its tone-deaf, self-serious ending -- the script is by Nick Schenk -- it's often enjoyable, satisfying and funny.
  6. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    63
    An endlessly fascinating movie. If only it were a good one.
  7. 38
    It's no compliment to say a movie is "all of a piece" if the piece is all worn out. For all its surface harshness, this movie is a star vehicle at once rickety and cozy.

See all 34 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 17 out of 195
  1. Your'reAllIdiots
    Jan 16, 2009
    10
    For all the people trashing this film, you obviously can't see any of the moral of greater idea of this movie. It wasn't poorly For all the people trashing this film, you obviously can't see any of the moral of greater idea of this movie. It wasn't poorly written of directed, if you go looking for things to hate you'll find them. This was a great movie. Expand
  2. SC
    Feb 15, 2009
    10
    Haven't even seen this one yet, but I will tomorrow (my first chance for a crowd-free monday afternoon flick in a while). If Michael Haven't even seen this one yet, but I will tomorrow (my first chance for a crowd-free monday afternoon flick in a while). If Michael Sragow says "no", I say "YES"! Always. Jeez, Mike, don't you have any friends to remind you that cynicism and self-absorbed vocabulary are no substitute for intelligence and good taste? Expand
  3. Aug 22, 2010
    10
    Gran Torino is maybe the best movie I have ever seen. It is full of everything to pleasure both genders. I watched at my father's apartmentGran Torino is maybe the best movie I have ever seen. It is full of everything to pleasure both genders. I watched at my father's apartment with my sister. We all had a great time with this awesome movie. 10 out of 10 is not enough, so I will cheat and say 12 out of 10 :P Expand
  4. davidl
    Feb 1, 2009
    9
    Fantastic film, powerful and very moving. Incredible how it could have garnered no academy nominations. Just shows hows skewed the academy Fantastic film, powerful and very moving. Incredible how it could have garnered no academy nominations. Just shows hows skewed the academy voting process is. This is one of the best films of the year. Expand
  5. Apr 21, 2014
    8
    Eastwood's performance and character are excellent. I love the relationship between his character and the boy. Well shot good morals. Just aEastwood's performance and character are excellent. I love the relationship between his character and the boy. Well shot good morals. Just a well made film. Should have higher critical praise than it does. Expand
  6. JohnT
    Jul 21, 2009
    7
    I'm having a hard time deciding on how I feel about this movie. Eastwood did an incredible job on many fronts. But, as a lot of people I'm having a hard time deciding on how I feel about this movie. Eastwood did an incredible job on many fronts. But, as a lot of people have said, the supporting cast was very weak. Their acting was nearly cringe-worthy at times. I'm a huge stickler for bad acting/dialogue but this movie was strange for the very reason that I actually sat through the whole thing and thoroughly enjoyed it despite all the awkward acting.. it was still, in many ways, very affecting and compelling... somehow. Expand
  7. VanceB
    Jan 17, 2009
    0
    The grand lesson of this movie is that the way to really defeat evil people is to allow them to kill you. Because maybe, just maybe, they The grand lesson of this movie is that the way to really defeat evil people is to allow them to kill you. Because maybe, just maybe, they might have to spend a few years in prison--boy that will teach 'em! This movie is the ultimate result of a culture that has become completely pacified and sissy-fied. It was a good movie up to the end. It made some valid commentary on our over-offended society (friends throw ethnic insults at each other without getting offended--unthinkable!). I love Clint Eastwood as an actor, but he has completely sold out to this pacifist mentality--the best way to teach bad people a lesson is to let them hurt you. Expand

See all 195 User Reviews

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