Long before it opened, Gran Torino gave movie buffs plenty to watch -- the hue and cry over the news that this film would be Clint Eastwood's final performance as an actor, the (erroneous) rumor that it was a return to the screen for "Dirty" Harry Callahan, the puzzling and perfunctory trailer, with Eastwood growling "Get off my lawn!" at a group of young intruders, the news that New York's National Board of Review named the film to its Top Ten List and saw fit to give Clint Eastwood honors for Best Actor and Nick Schenk the award for Best Original Screenplay. All of this was fun to watch -- and, to be blunt, more interesting to watch than Gran Torino itself actually is. Gran Torino is not actively bad -- and there are parts of it which are actually quite good -- but it is not, in fact a film that would be worthy of any kind of enduring honor or long-term interest without the considerable power of Eastwood's myth nudging it into the zone of contention. Gran Torino is, bluntly, a pretty good film -- sleek and brawny like the title car, but a little clumsy on the corners and with no small amount of knock in its dramatic engine.