There’s one thing about American cinema which always made me hopeful and looking forward to and that is the spirit of independent film-making. With low budget real life locations instead of glorious larger than life production sets, common and lifelike characters instead of pretentious stars with worn expressions, natural performances rather than over the top acting and fine poise and patience of story telling than technical superficialities…there’re so much that directly connects the audience without any extra effort. Here’s once again a decent independent film which brought all these things together and trying to kindle the spirit of humanity.
When the director, actors and crew of the film don’t deliberately try to impress the audience and maintains the ease and simplicity of story telling, the film automatically connects to its audience. Director Thomas McCarthy made a decent debut attempt with ‘The Station Agent’ and he again achieved and matures that feat with this film. Walter is a lonely, reserved widower college professor of
Connecticut. He visits New York to read a paper in conference and came
to know that an immigrant couple is living in his own flat. He shares couple of
days with the couple and forms a human connection and change that he’s missing
from time being. Incidentally the immigrant man nabbed by FBI by mistake and
arrested in detention centre. As the conference is over, the professor has to
move back to his college soon but the unlikely situations with these strangers
forms an emotional bonding that pulling him to stay in New York.
We have seen Richard Jenkins as fine supporting actor but rarely see a film where he carried the film on his own with the performance that makes him remember for long. This film is breaking of that jinx for him. But what’s more satisfying than Jenkins are the natural and lifelike performances by all those unknown faces of non American actors that makes it so realistic than staged drama. The playing of drum is symbolic force of life’s rhythm here…it should play on with a flow of spontaneity and without thinking much about preconceived notions.
Recommended one for everyone.