1001 Old Sproul Rd
Springfield, PA 19064
First Friday Movie Series at the Peace Center of Delaware County – doors open at 6:30 p.m. for light refreshments.
“The Visitor”, 2008, 104 min. Written and directed by Tom McCarthy. Rated PG-13 for language.
The Visitor begins quietly with widower and college professor Walter Vale returning to his New York City apartment to find a young refugee couple living there. Both refugees are victims of a real estate scam and homeless. Walter (Richard Jenkins, nominated for an Oscar for his performance) tells the two to get out. Then, seeing them on the sidewalk with all their possessions in hand, he invites them in for the night.
An unlikely friendship develops between Walter and Tarak (Haaz Sleiman), a Syrian street musician who teaches the professor how to play the drum. In turn, Walter invites the couple to share his apartment.
After an incident in the subway in which Tarek is mistakenly suspected of “turnstile jumping”, he is arrested by transit police and when a background check is run, handed over to ICE [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] and delivered to a detention center for deportation. Walter hires a lawyer for Tarek. Tarek’s mother, Mouna (Israeli/Palestinian superstar Hiam Abbass) turns up, looking for her son.
Although released in 2008, The Visitor is every bit the film on which to reflect as the Trump years become more and more disquieting. This is a quiet, topical little film about people facing the human reality behind the immigration debate. Nowhere in it is the political railing that consumes the discussion today about “illegal aliens”, just people trying to live their lives and care for each as best they can.
CLICK HERE to watch the film’s trailer!