In New York City's Harlem circa 1987, an overweight, abused, illiterate teen who is pregnant with her second child is invited to enroll in an alternative school in hopes that her life can head in a new direction.
An aspiring author during the civil rights movement of the 1960s decides to write a book detailing the African-American maids' point of view on the white families for which they work, and the hardships they go through on a daily basis.
Bryce Dallas Howard
A married couple are faced with a difficult decision - to improve the life of their child by moving to another country or to stay in Iran and look after a deteriorating parent who has Alzheimer's disease.
Muna, a single mother in Ramallah, has applied for a visa to the US. When it comes, her son Fadi, an excellent student, convinces her they should go. After an incident at customs begins their exile badly, they join Muna's sister and family in Illinois. Muna needs a job: although she has two degrees and 15 years' experience in banking, she settles for work at White Castle, telling the family her job's at a nearby bank. It's spring, 2003, and the US invades Iraq. While friends come from unlikely places, Fadi meets prejudice at school. How he'll respond to it and to American youth culture and how Muna will sort things out with her family are the rest of the story. Tragedy or hope? Written by
There were no White Castles in Winnepeg, where it was filmed, so the White Castle company had the supplies for one trucked there. It never sold food, but people kept trying to order from it. See more »
Plodding and episodic indy about Palenstine immigrants kept afloat by magnificent performance
Amreeka chronicles the trials and tribulations of the lead character and her son as they leave a dissatisfying and violent life in Palestine for a dissatisfying and violent life in the Chicago area of the US. The performances of these two leads define the movie for me. Ms. Faour, as the mother, gives depth to her character way beyond the script, and conveys the proper resilience in the face of all possible indignities that only actors of true star quality can convey. On the other extreme, the actor playing the son is whiny and completely unconvincing when supposedly acting out of anger or supposedly longing to fit in. He is simply inept. With the exception of the poor performance by the class bully, the rest of the acting both by Palestinians and Americans is fairly good, especially given the rambling and episodic script that is chock full of clichés.
Another huge impediment to enjoyment for me was the fact that the English subtitles in many scenes were nearly impossible to read. It seems to me that when letter-boxing first caught on, the subtitles on movies requiring them would appear in the letter-boxed portion of the screen making them highly visible. Then after awhile, that practice ceased altogether and I remember some highbrow critic saying that it was a practice that should be discontinued and shortly thereafter was - but I cannot recall why. In any event, some movies still manage to make the subtitles legible. This is NOT one of them.
Altogether, if you wish to see a magnificent lead actor performance by a very atypical leading lady, there are worse ways to spend 100 minutes. FOr most of us, there are also better ways.
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