120 Days captures an intimate look at the lives of one family of undocumented immigrants who have lived and worked in the United States illegally for twelve years. Father and husband, ...
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120 Days captures an intimate look at the lives of one family of undocumented immigrants who have lived and worked in the United States illegally for twelve years. Father and husband, Miguel Cortes, could be forced to leave the country in four months as a result of his immigration status. In exchange for Miguel agreeing to leave the country voluntarily, and paying a $5000 bond, the judge offers him 120 days to get his affairs in order before leaving his wife and two daughters in the U.S. to continue their education. Miguel has 120 Days to work hard, save money, and weigh his options about returning to Mexico alone, or changing his name and disappearing back into another U.S. city illegally with his family.Written by
With so many pundits and politicians attempting to demonize undocumented immigrants, "120 Days" provides an essential corrective. The people in this moving documentary come to seem like family members, and the human toll of immigration policy becomes achingly real.
Ted Roach, the writer-director, uses subtle editing and unobtrusive narration to convey the urgency of the situation facing an undocumented immigrant named Miguel Cortes -- and he does so without resorting to sensationalism or sentimentality. The approach is simple, direct -- and all the more effective because of that.
Even viewers who shy away from documentaries will find themselves drawn into the drama of Cortes and his family. The film is just as suspenseful as a Hollywood thriller, and the outcome of the story will stay with you long after the film ends.
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