The Visitor (I) (2007)

PG-13   |    |  Drama

The Visitor (2007) Poster

A college professor travels to New York City to attend a conference and finds a young couple living in his apartment.

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  • Patricia Clarkson at an event for The Visitor (2007)
  • Hiam Abbass and Richard Jenkins in The Visitor (2007)
  • Danai Gurira and Haaz Sleiman in The Visitor (2007)
  • Hiam Abbass at an event for The Visitor (2007)
  • Patricia Clarkson at an event for The Visitor (2007)
  • Richard Jenkins in The Visitor (2007)

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10 April 2008 | marc-262
| You know a movie is good when you don't want it to end.
I saw this film at Sundance (along with about twenty others). It was the only film I screened that ended with a standing ovation. The accolade was well-deserved. Richard Jenkins completely inhabits the professor, Walter Vale, unmoored by the death of his wife. Drifting, without purpose, grinding through his days, he thinks his life is over -- he is just taking up space. But when that space is invaded by a vibrant couple, Walter has an epiphany.

Richard Jenkins is not the only actor of note in this cast. Everyone is pitch-perfect. But particularly be on the lookout for Hiam Abbass. Every time she is on the screen is a delight. This is one of those rare films that you really do not want to end.

It would be easy to pigeon-hole this film as a topical drama dealing with an uncaring government system. But this film transcends all that. Instead it is a heartfelt film about what happens when people -- with all their desires and difficulties -- bump into one another to express the best part of their humanity. If this is the kind of movie you would like to see made more frequently in Hollywood, vote with your wallet this weekend, then go again and take some friends.

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