THE VISITOR Add To My Top 10

Out of Balance

Content -3
Quality
None Light Moderate Heavy
Language        
Violence        
Sex        
Nudity        

Release Date: April 11, 2008

Starring: Richard Jenkins, Haaz Sleiman, Hiam Abbass, and Danai Gurira

Genre: Drama

Audience: Older teenagers and adults

Rating: PG-13

Runtime: 108 minutes

Distributor: Overture Films/Starz LLC

Director: Tom McCarthy

Executive Producer: None

Producer: Michael London and Mary Jane Skalski

Writer: Tom McCarthy

Address Comments To:

Robert Clasen, Chairman/CEO
Starz LLC
(Starz Entertainment, Overture Films, Anchor Bay Entertainment)
8900 Liberty Circle
Englewood, CO 80112
Phone: (720) 852-7700
Fax: (720) 852-8555
Website: www.starz.com

Content:

(RoRo, APAP, FR, L, V, S, N, A, D, M) Strong Romantic worldview about personal interactions between several illegal aliens and an American college professor, plus low-level American immigration officials are shown to be mean and apathetic, with no balance, and some light references to Islam, a false religion, but nothing offensive other than a mild apathetic acceptance; four obscenities (including two “f” words) and two light profanities; brief violence such as two men scuffle when they surprise one another in apartment and brief scuffle when police arrest a man; no sex scenes but unmarried couple is living together and woman in nightgown lies down with man in bed and confesses something to him, but it is not revealed whether any fornication takes place after that, though it may be surmised; brief upper male nudity and man surprises woman in tub but nothing shown; alcohol use; smoking; and, illegal immigration and government officials are apathetic to the point of being mean.

Summary:

THE VISITOR is an independent drama about the encounter of a white college professor with a young illegal immigrant and his mother. THE VISITOR is more of a beautifully acted character study than a political treatise on immigration, but more balance in its political content would have made the movie, including its downbeat ending, easier to swallow.

Review:

THE VISITOR is an independent drama about the encounter of a white college professor with a young immigrant and his mother.

Character actor Richard Jenkins plays Walter Vale, an economics professor who’s lost his passion for living following his wife’s death years before. Forced to attend a conference in Manhattan, Walter is surprised to find an illegal alien couple living in his old New York apartment. Walter takes pity on Tarek, a Syrian man, and his black girlfriend from Senegal, Zainab. He lets them stay in the spare room until they can find something else. Meanwhile, Tarek, a professional musician, teaches Walter to play the African drum.

After being stopped by police, however, Tarek is held for being an undocumented alien. Walter tries everything he can to free Tarek. Then, Tarek’s beautiful mother from Michigan comes looking for her son. An unlikely, but understandable, romance develops between her and Walter.

THE VISITOR is more of a character study than a political treatise on immigration. Even so, it sides with illegal aliens and makes low-level American immigration officials look mean and apathetic. More balance would have made THE VISITOR, including its downbeat ending, easier to swallow. Illegal aliens only have themselves to blame for violating American laws, but streamlining and clarifying government red tape, and making it just and fair, are always a good thing.

In Brief:

THE VISITOR is an independent drama about the encounter of a white college professor with a young illegal immigrant and his mother. Character actor Richard Jenkins plays Walter Vale, an economics professor who’s lost his passion for living following his wife’s death years earlier. Forced to attend a conference in Manhattan, Walter is surprised to find an illegal alien couple living in his old New York apartment. Walter takes pity on Tarek, a Syrian man, and his black girlfriend from Senegal, Zainab. He lets them stay until they can find something else. Meanwhile, Tarek, a professional musician, teaches Walter to play the African drum. After being stopped by police, Tarek is held for being an undocumented alien. Walter tries everything to free Tarek. Then, Tarek’s beautiful mother from Michigan comes looking for her son. An unlikely romance develops between her and Walter.

THE VISITOR is more of a beautifully acted character study than a political treatise on immigration. Even so, it sides with illegal aliens and makes low-level American immigration officials look mean and apathetic. More balance would have made THE VISITOR, including its downbeat ending, easier to swallow.