Monday, January 12, 2009



The Hmong (or Mong) are an ethnic group from the mountainous regions of southeast Asia of Vietnam, Laos and Thailand. They fought as American allies during the Vietnam War. Consequently a great number resettled in the United States when hostilities ceased. It was not until 1980 that entire families were allowed entry into the country thus becoming the second wave of Hmong immigrants. Today, approximately 270,000 Hmong people live in the USA.

Clint Eastwood: 70-something-year-old Walt Kowalski
Christopher Carley: parish priest Father Janovich
Bee Vang: Walt’s 16-year-old neighbour Thao
Ahney Her: Thao’s older sister Sue
John Carroll Lynch: Walt’s Italian barber Martin
Brian Haley: Walt’s oldest son Mitch
Geraldine Hughes: Mitch’s wife Karen

We’ve all met one: a grumpy, grouchy, old man seemingly with a chip on his shoulder. That pretty well describes Walt who creates problems for himself and his neighbours. There is a ring of truth about his situation, sometimes humorous but often it is not.

With all the racial slurs it’s possible some viewers will take offense. I’m sure Walt could care less.

for language (swearing and racial epithets) and some violence.

• While cruising down the street rival gangs of Latinos and Hmogs stop to exchange some words. In the distance behind the two cars another one is approaching. The camera angle cuts briefly to catch the response of the Latinos and back again. The distant car has simply disappeared in that two second interval.
• Walt calls his son Martin and after a brief conversation he hangs up and all we hear is the dial tone. But when a call is terminated the line simply goes dead; we would hear nothing. The dial tone is heard before dialling.
• I don’t know for sure but I doubt the US army allows discharged veterans to keep their rifles.
• As Walt drives down the street he sees a commotion among a group of people but is too far away to hear what is being said yet when he gets out of his pickup he admonishes one of them for having used the term “bro”.
• Justifying to Daisy his smoking while having a bath Walt says “it’s the first time I’ve smoked in the house” which is untrue because he was smoking in the living room when the priest came to call.

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