Gran Torino is a film by Warner Brothers in association with Village Road Show Pictures. Directed by Clint Eastwood, it is based on the themes of culture, cultural conflicts, and cultural interactions. From this film, one learns how cultural perceptions, interaction, and violence based on cultural differences occur in the urban settings of America. In Gran Torino, the theme of culture is portrayed in the slow and unintentional way in which Walt, an oppressor and a tough hearted character becomes consumed in the culture around him and begins to identify himself with the Hmong family. This essay discusses how and why Walt and his Hmong neighbors become close despite their cultural differences.
Walt’s Role in Gran Torino
According to Schenk, Walt in the story comes off as a dad that advises everybody. He is everybody’s shop teacher, despite his or her previous relationship with him (Burk 2010). He sees many of the people in his society at the weakest moments and supports everyone in his community in his own harsh ways. Unfortunately, it is true; the community he lives in does require male heads in their households. From his origins, the character is from Minnesota and drew time working for a factory with a number of Hmong families. This brings us the main theme of the movie.
The people are from the unpopular culture in Laos that joined other parts of Asia that came to the support of the United States in the Vietnam War. As a tribe, they are rare especially, at the present, and many do not know their culture. Walt does not have the same self-control, which ends up most of the time, with throwing of racial insults, as many times as a person that believes they are engaged in a casual conversation. He is an unremorseful racist, except the fact that he makes weak connections with his neighbors and he feels the layers that he had for hostility slowly fade into nothing.
Gradually, Walt assumes the role of a protector, and that change is portrayed in sense a humorous point of view. Walt has a loose and sometimes funny performance in the early parts of the production giving the film one of the great pleasures. Some enjoyment in this sense can be said to be the same as spending a lot of time with an old friend. Eastwood has a rare talent at being able to direct films the he stars in such as this and Million Dollar Baby (Dargis 2008). Thus, he is a legend manipulator of the presence he gives on the set.