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Sunday, December 28, 2008

Gran Torino

What a powerful story about an old, lonely, angry bigot. Directed with charm and humor that diffuses the incendiary racial slurs and points out how pointless those words really are. Clint plays a widower Korean War vet with a major chip on his shoulder, but as it turns out, an ever-so-tiny soft spot left in his heart. If you saw one movie from 2008, this is it. GO SEE THIS MOVIE.

All Things Possible,


  • At 12:00 AM, December 29, 2008 , Anonymous Ute said...

    Hi Chris,
    thanks for the movie tip. We saw the trailer on Saturday when we went to see Australia and I thought that looked like an awesome film. Unfortunately, we have to wait until late February to see it. But it's already on my list! Also another movie Eastwood is involved with, Changeling, looked pretty good.
    Did anyone see Australia yet and if so, what did you think? I thought the photography was amazing, but the characters and story were too much cliché for me, which I thought was a shame, because the actors were really good.
    Dave, I haven't seen The Day The Earth Stood Still yet, I plan to go see it sometime this week. However, I won't be able to compare it to the original, as too much time has passed since I saw that one and I can't remember much. I'll let you know what I think, though.
    Did anyone see Inkheart yet? We enjoyed that one a lot, even though the story was compressed from the books.
    Hope you all had good holidays and didn't suffer too much from the weather. The 24 and 25 were very grey here, but then the sun came out and the temperature went below freezing. No snow, though, as usual.
    Stay warm and big hugs to you all!

  • At 12:03 PM, December 29, 2008 , Blogger Susan said...

    Happy New Year Ute, Chris and forum family...Thanks for the notes about Australia, Ute. Almost saw it. Now I've heard mixed reviews.

    Thanks Chris for promoting a Michigan-made movie! Doesn't that give you any ideas about your home state? It's great to see the film industry take a foothold here. I'd say the potential is ATP!

    Dave, windy on the Riviera? Hope all is well with you and Tim. What a difference a day makes. So far the power has stayed on. So that is ATB!

    I'll share Ute's warm hugs to all! Sue

  • At 7:19 PM, December 30, 2008 , Blogger Susan said...

    Hey everyone...spoke too soon. Power out right after I wrote that! Until tonight. So hope all is well with forum friends and that your power is on...and let that mean power as in the spirit of ATP...shining brilliantly in your life for All Things Fine in 2009!

    Ute, what's Inkheart? i think I need lots of movie help!

    Have a beautiful New Year's Eve and wonderful celebrations! Sue

  • At 7:21 AM, December 31, 2008 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    A lot of power outages these past few days in the upper midwest of the US, especially Michigan, but not for me at least. I'm glad your's is back on now Sue, I know of people further north in the mitten who just got their back late last night and some in my neck of the woods who didn't have it back yet this morning. Makes for a cold new year.

    Speaking of great movies - I do hope to see Gran Torino as I've heard only good things about it and Chris's endorsement puts it to the top of my list. I saw "Doubt" a couple days ago and recommend that one to everybody as well - and not only because I played Father Flynn on stage (great role). All the performances are incredibly strong and believable and though there are significant differences between the play and the movie, it works very well on the screen.

    I hope everyone has a Happy New Year and that you prove indeed that All Things are Possible in 2009!


  • At 11:30 AM, December 31, 2008 , Anonymous Angi said...

    Happy New Year dear Forum Family!

    Thanks for the movie recommendations Chris, Ute and Dave I'll try and get to see them.

    Despite intending to see Inkheart and Twilight over the holidays we've all been taking it in turns to have the latest variation of flu/cold virus that's doing the rounds over here.

    Dave, Sue your powercuts even made a mention on British news programmes. Hope things are ok now though and everyone has a warm trouble free, ATP New Year!

    With Love and Bright Blessings


  • At 6:14 PM, December 31, 2008 , Blogger Susan said...

    Hi Angi, Dave,Ute, everyone...
    Saw the poster of Inkheart tonight (sounds good) on our 3rd annual New Year's Eve dinner and movie excursion...all due, I must admit, to the Chris influence. Remember when he said go see "Rocky" 2006 version? We did and that's when I imagined a certain movie title flashing across the screen. Still waiting:)...Last year it was "No Country for Old Men" - you probably remember me ranting about that. This New Year's it was "The Day the Earth Stood Still" -- and I can't compare either, but now am curious to do so. And to reflect on the message more. Need to see the first one now. Looking forward to your movie comments as we roll along toward Oscar time!
    Angi, Michigan power problems made the British news? Wow! ATB 2009Blessings back to you! And to all the forum too! Sue

  • At 11:27 PM, January 03, 2009 , Blogger Clint said...

    Hey Guys,
    I second that - Gran Torino is great.
    It made my annual top ten list... here it is in full...

  • At 12:50 AM, January 04, 2009 , Anonymous Ute said...

    Hi everyone, Happy New Year!
    Hope you all had a good start of 2009.

    Angi, hope you are all well again.

    Sue, Inkheart is about a story teller who could read characters out of the stories he read aloud, that is, they appear in the real world. Unfortunately, for everyone he reads out, someone from the real world ends up in the story. One of those is his wife and so he stops reading to his daughter and goes on a long journey to find a copy of that book he lost her to and bring her back.

    Dave, still haven't seen TDTESS.

    Clint, thanks for your movie top ten list. Most of those I haven't seen yet as they are coming to German cinema this year.

    Here's my top six movie list for 2008:
    - The Red Baron
    - Welcome to the Sticks (Bienvenue chez les Ch'tis)
    - Batman - The Dark Knight
    - 88 Minutes
    - Iron Man
    - Vantage Point

    What movies did everyone else enjoy last year?

    Big warm hugs to you all!


  • At 9:38 AM, January 04, 2009 , Blogger Christopher Showerman said...

    Hey Clint & Ute!

    Thanks for the faves lists! Yes, Batman was indeed a freaking great movie and it deserves every penny of the $5.5B it made at the box office AND sympathy vote aside, Heath Ledger deserves every award he should (and will) get for his portrayal of The Joker. Delightful!

    Happy New Year Sue & Dave & Angi! I hope you stay warm and thrive through your respective winters!

    All Things Possible!

    PS: Thanks to Clint, I'll have a new posting soon with a sneak peak at one of the many movies he got me involved in last year...

  • At 11:04 AM, January 04, 2009 , Blogger Susan said...

    Happy New Year Chris and everyone...
    I was getting about ready to ask the very question you answered just now. Keeping us posted on those many movies:)
    Thought of it after I saw Clint's post. I imagine we were all thinking the same thing!

    Yes, winter's long...but also a good time to slow down, reflect, dream a little, and envision ATP...
    ATB to all! Sue

  • At 7:12 PM, January 04, 2009 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hey All,
    I'm sad to say that I only saw two of the movies on Clint's top ten list - though I'll be watching several as they come out on DVD to be sure now.

    I'm with the general consensus that The Dark Knight was a brilliant film. My only issue with it, and it's because I'm a comic book purist, was that the Joker was clearly wearing make-up where as in the comics his skin is actually bleached. But, Ledger's performance I thought captured the true nature of the character more so than any other performance to date (and when you consider that Jack Nicholson was one of the Jokers - that's high praise indeed from me).

    I don't have a top 10 per se, but I will list the movies I enjoyed this year:

    The Dark Knight
    Iron Man
    The Incredible Hulk
    ( there a theme here?)
    Wall E

    I know I saw other films (TDTESS, The Spirit, and more) but these are the ones that stuck with me through the year. Sadly, my movie going seems to be in a rut in terms of what I go to see - at the theatre I go to see the spectacle and if it's a good movie to boot, so much the better. At home I watch the "good" movies...guess I'm just like so many others these days and I'm sure that this will have an effect on the box offices and the films that get produced.



  • At 7:18 PM, January 06, 2009 , Blogger Thomas said...

    Hi all happy new year. mine didnt end to well my dad passed away on the 26 but it was a blessing and he waited until i got there on that day. he new me and then he passed strange how we can do that.

    I have seen many movies this year the Dark night was excellent and i agree heath ledger should get all the attention he is due.

    iron man was great as well i loved australia the little actor was so good in the film. the story was great as well . I just saw Benjamine button and i liked that movie very much,good make up and story.
    also saw Valkyrie. it was also very good except for the british accents. hahahah oh well the story was good i had no idea the germans actually tried to stop hitler themselves from within.
    also went to doubt i have my doubts to some of the story i guess im a bit thick but the acting was superb by meryl Streep as always phillip seymor hoffman was also great.
    I went to see the day the earth stood still and i found i liked the original with Michael renny and patricia neale better.. the effects were good but the story was not that good and it left me wondering. maybe that was the idea. I want to see Gran torino it looks great and a friend of mine had a chance to have his car in the movie but they found another closer to where they were filming.

    Im in Pennsylvania yet trying to get my fathers estate settled but ill be heading back to Vegas on friday hope you all are having a good start to the new year and i hope the country and the world soon get there crap together we need some good news. love and hugs to all my family on here. tommy Namaste!

  • At 7:50 AM, January 07, 2009 , Blogger Christopher Showerman said...

    Dear Tommy -

    I'm so sorry to hear about your loss. I know your father was a big part of your life and also a big responsibility for you. Sure it is a relief that he is no longer suffering but it doesn't change the reality that you have lost a parent. You have my deepest sympathies.


  • At 12:42 PM, January 07, 2009 , Anonymous Ute said...

    Dear Tommy,
    sorry to hear about your dad's passing. I am glad you got a chance to say good-bye, though.
    My dad died almost 12 years ago during the night and we knew it was coming, so we had a chance to say good-bye the evening before, which helped us to let go. But know this, as long as our loved ones are in our minds and our hearts they are never truly gone.

    As for Valkyrie, oh yes, there was actually a lot of restistance inside of Germany and a total of 42 (!) attempts to assassinate Hitler are recorded, but they all failed for some reason or other. I haven't seen the film yet, it still has to start here, so I cannot comment yet on how accurate they are historically, but we plan to see it, too.

    Big hugs to you!

  • At 4:06 PM, January 07, 2009 , Anonymous Angi said...


    My sympathies on the passing of your father. Nothing can compare to the loss of a loved one and words can not truly heal the grief or bring them back, but my thoughts are with you.

    With sympathy


  • At 4:08 PM, January 07, 2009 , Anonymous Alex said...

    Hi dear friends!

    I'm so sorry for your loss, dear Tommy; my heartfelt simpathy and thoughts to you.

    Chris, Clint, Dave i appreciated your comments on the movie "Gran Torino"; it sounds great. I read the story, watched the trailer and, as you wrote Chris, i also think it's powerful. I will watched it when it comes out here in Torino, Italy at the end of February.

    Hope all is well for you, despite bad weather; it's cold but beautifully snowy here now.

    Thank you Chris and all for making this forum a lovely family!
    All my best wishes to all of you for a Fantastic All Things Possible 2009!

    Be well all!

  • At 7:03 PM, January 07, 2009 , Blogger Susan said...

    Tommy...When you were telling us about your dad in weeks earlier, it reminded me of my family's struggles also. During the time since this forum family began to gather, we lost both our moms. I remember how much this forum family meant to me during that time. I'll add my heartfelt prayers to the others, and may you discover many blessings coming into your life this year.

    We're a year behind with most films, as usual, but we did happen to see Will Smith's "Pursuit of Happyness" the other night. A wonderful story of All Things Possible. And keeping on keeping on! I'd hesitated to say anything about TDTEST but I agree with you, Tommy. The effects were great, but we both thought the storyline was missing something. It seemed a little disconnected. I'll have to see the first one. I understand that first one is considered one of the top science fiction films.

    Looks like we're on the snow generating track again this week. Snow in Italy sounds beautiful, as you say, Alex, it is here, as well. I don't mind quiet snow. Hope all is well with everyone...whether in the snowy realms or sunny climes. Something tells me most of us are in the former! Since our daughter is in Md and no longer in CA, I don't get to visit the west coast anymore. Hope it's ATP tee-shirt weather in L.A.:)

    Take care everyone....Sue

  • At 8:23 AM, January 09, 2009 , Blogger Christopher Showerman said...

    Hey Y'all!

    Gran Torino opens wide today. (1/9/2009)

    Have a great weekend!

    All Things Possible!

  • At 9:16 AM, January 09, 2009 , Blogger Susan said...

    Be safe in the snow Tim, Dave while trying to get to Gran Torino. No tee-shirt weather here, with more winter fun on tap this weekend. I won't be able to go see the film for 2-3 weeks so hope it stays in the theatres awhile. Great to see the spotlight on Michigan in the movie in these times. Seems almost perfect timing. Clint Eastwood, as an actor, makes ATP seem ATP! At 78 years old, he makes us realize we can be an "action hero" -- affecting our world for a long time. At least that's my take on it. Looking forward to all the comments...Sue

  • At 4:05 PM, January 14, 2009 , Blogger Susan said...

    Just dropping in to wish everyone well during this extreme weather experience...Arctic blast here, and I've heard it's one of the coldest winters in Europe ever. Is that right? And also sad to note the passing of veteran actor Ricardo Montalban. Forum's quiet. Be safe all...Sue

  • At 8:57 PM, January 14, 2009 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I was also saddened to hear about the passing of Ricardo. I enjoyed his work in sci-fi (Khaaaaaan!), fantasy ('de plane,' 'de plane'), and of course animation (Senor Senior among others), and the man who made "Corinthian Leather" a household phrase. A true journeyman of the acting profession and I have a feeling that he was a great guy, too.

    Also, I don't know about Europe, but it's one of the snowiest winters here! Cold is on the way though - better put on an extra blanket tonight!


  • At 12:48 PM, January 16, 2009 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    It is really hard to make fun of Chris and his t-shirt wearing when you go out to start your car in the morning and the temperature gauge says it is minus 26 (farenheit) then the weather guy on the radio says the windchill temps are nearing 40 below. T-shirts, Santa Anna winds and earthquakes are looking really "OK" at the moment.


  • At 12:54 PM, January 16, 2009 , Blogger Christopher Showerman said...

    My lord - 26 below zero - I can't even think at those temperatures!

    Yeah I was sorry to see Ricardo Montalban go as well - off to the real fantasy island.

    Have a fantastic Martin Luther King Holiday weekend and a very exciting inauguration day next Tuesday.

    Stay cozy!


  • At 1:47 PM, January 16, 2009 , Blogger Susan said...

    I thought you might pipe in about this record weather's so beautiful out...but soooo cold...probably even on the Riviera, right Dave? Tee-shirts are fine, but only with the fire stoked up inside, and donning polar garb for outside. So much for enticing CA types (with the blood gone thinner now, like our daughter) to come home to make movies in Michigan!
    ATB/P/WARM! Sue

  • At 7:18 PM, January 17, 2009 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Well, I braved the cold today and went to the movies with my niece (apparently along with everyone else in town - I've never seen the theatre so crowded) and it was a toss-up, should we see one of the sure fire award winners opening this weekend like "Paul Blart: Mall Cop" or "My Bloody Valentine 3-D." Well, as enticing as those both were we settled on a little film by some unknown director/actor named Clint Eastwood called "Gran Torino."

    Once again I am pleased to report that Chris has not lead us astray - this is easily one of the best movies of 2008! I laughed, I cried, and I was totally entranced by not only Mr. Eastwoods performance, but that of the entire cast who were so believable you felt their pain and their joy.

    So, as Chris says - GO SEE THIS MOVIE. The theatre was crowded for this showing, too but it was mostly an older crowd. Everyone of all ages needs to support high quaility film making - it's the only way we will continue to get more of the same!

    Oh, btw, it got up into the low twenties today - a veritable heat wave! Lots more snow though...

  • At 4:03 PM, January 18, 2009 , Anonymous Alex said...

    Hi everyone!

    Sue, Dave and Tim glad to see you're all ok despite the artic cold wave; it's one of the many extreme weather conditions which affect the whole world. It's not too cold here in Italy; we are getting more rain and snow than last years. It has been very cold in north and central Europe lately.

    I was sorry to hear about the passing of famous actor Ricardo Montalban; my simpathy to his family. I also had the pleasure of watching in this video his wonderful acceptance speech to the Easter Seals Lifetime Achievement Award in 1998. I was touched and inspired by his words, by his strenght. I agree with you Dave, he definitely was a great person as well!

    Take care and have a fantastic new week everyone!


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