The Visitor

{5/5} “I pretend that I’m busy, that I’m working, that I’m writing… But really, I’m not doing anything.”

Walter is a college professor whose wife has died — now he’s not connecting to much in his life. He’s been trying to learn to play the piano but finds it difficult. When he has to travel to a conference, he decides to stay in his old apartment that he still owns. But when he arrives he discovers a young couple living there — who believe that they are renting the place. Tarek introduces Walter to the djembe, an African drum, which becomes his new passion.

The Visitor was released in 2007.

This is a story you haven’t seen before — about friendship, love, and what happens to illegal immigrants in the US after 9/11. It’s about what happens when you open yourself to new possibilities. The actors playing the four main parts convey the reality of the story.

Jan A. P. Kaczmarek (Get Low) composed the music — it starts off in a Western classical style with piano and strings, and moves into a more Middle Eastern style with drums and other instruments.

Richard Jenkins plays Walter. Jenkins has small parts in lots of movies including It Could Happen to You and Random Hearts — it’s nice to see him in a larger role. Haaz Sleiman (the TV miniseries The Promise) plays Tarek and Danai Gurira (the TV show The Walking Dead) plays his girlfriend, Zainab. Hiam Abbass (Lemon Tree) plays Tarek’s mother, Mouna.

The movie was directed by Tom McCarthy (The Station Agent, Win Win). I’ve now seen all three movies directed by McCarthy — they are all well worth watching.

This entry was posted on Sunday, August 26th, 2012 at 8:33 pm and is filed under Reviews of movies. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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