Character Profile Gran Torino

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Walt Kowalski is a Polish-American former auto worker who becomes embroiled in a conflict involving a Hmong family and a gang. Walt Kowalski had served in the Korean War and had killed a Korean boy who had been trying to surrender to him. Walt Kowalski has bitter memories of the conflict. He is a retiree who formerly worked at a Ford automobile plant for much of his life, and he owns a Gran Torino he had personally built. He also owns an M1 Garand rifle. Walt's wife, Dorothy Kowalski, is dead by the beginning of the film. Clint Eastwood plays this character. Thao Vang Lor is a young Hmong American boy who is coerced by a Hmong gang to attempt to steal Walt Kowalski's Gran Torino. Walt often calls Thao "Toad." With no father in the family, he is expected to be the man of the house, but he lacks direction and initially does chores at the direction of his sister Sue. Thao is soon coerced into joining the Hmong gang by his gangster cousins. After Thao clumsily attempts to steal Walt's car as part of his forced gang initiation, he returns home instead of fleeing with the gang. After confessing the attempted crime to his family, Thao's mother and sister bring him to Walt to apologize and make amends to the community as Walt's servant. Walt also sees Thao helping an elderly neighbor with her groceries after she is ignored by several Asian kids that pass by. Through Walt, he learns how to do construction work and labor, and how to act like a man, even getting help in his romantic pursuit of Youa. Initially perceived as a coward by Walt, their growing relationship gradually changes the older man's impression of Thao, with Walt ultimately entrusting the Ford Gran Torino to Thao. Bee Vang portrays this

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