"Gran Torino" is a movie starring Clint Eastwood (as Walt) that deals with many sociological concepts such as deviance, gender stratification, race, ethnicity and socialization. I feel that these four concepts apply relate to the movie better than most than any others. Deviance can be defined as norm violations ranging from minor infractions such as bad manners, to major infractions such as serious violence. Walt, the main character, is an example of deviant behavior. He just lost his wife and is having has trouble dealing with his guilt from when he was a soldier in the Vietnam War. Walt drinks, smokes and cusses which are all minor deviant behaviors. The psychological theory of deviance focuses on individual abnormality in which unsuccessful socialization can be blamed. It appears that he was never able to fully recover from what he experienced and takes those feelings of hate and anger out on other people in his life. Structural-functional analysis states that deviance brings people together which in this case is true because Walt befriends the Hmong people that live next door. They are victims of gang violence and Walt does everything he can to ignore the problems of these people but in the end he ends up risking his life in order to bring justice to those that were harmed by this gang. The gang causes the majority of the deviance in this movie. The leader is a cousin of Thao (the teenage boy that lives next door to Walt) and he tries to get him to join in the rebellious acts of the gang. At the beginning of the movie they try to get him to steal Walt's most prized possession, the Gran Torino. Thao, Walt's teenage neighbor, was unsuccessful due to the fact that Walt came after him with a gun and almost shot Thao. Deviance is a theme that recurs throughout the entirety of this movie.
Race and ethnicity are major themes in this movie as well. Race refers to socially constructed categories based on biological traits a society defines as important while a person's ethnicity is referred as socially constructed categories based on cultural traits a society defines as important.