Tuesday, May 31, 2016

The Immigrant (2013)

Cannes Film Festival 2013

Palme d'Or
James Gray

The Weinstein Company
Directed by James Gray
My rating: 2.5 stars out of 4

Two Polish sisters arrive at Ellis Island in the early 1920s: one gets sent to the infirmary where she is diagnosed with TB while the other is marked for deportation because of an incident on the boat on the way over. She gets "rescued" by a man posing as traveler's aid, who takes her home and puts her in his burlesque show. Needing money to get her sister out of the hospital, she soon succumbs to the man's pressure to become a prostitute. Meanwhile a magician falls in love with her, but her pimp becomes insanely jealous. His final gesture of reconciliation rings hollow as all the characters meet their predictable fates. A good story somewhat wasted by the final act. Joaquin Phoenix as the leader of the show and pimp for the girls struggles with a tendency to chew up the scenery. Marion Cotillard as the girl is his polar opposite.

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