Donate Now to Support KDHX

Listen Live
Thursday, 19 November 2009 19:00
Local opening date: November 20, 2009
Reviewed by Diane Carson
Amreeka, the Arab word for America, is a small, lovely film that follows characters who look, talk and act like real people in recognizable situations. The plot first intercepts its central, Palestinian mother Muna, as she awkwardly encounters her ex-husband and his new wife in a West Bank market. Further irritated by her and 16-year-old son Fadi's harassment as they return from Ramallah to their home in Bethlehem where the mail includes her green card, Muna decides to join her sister's family living near Chicago. Muna and Fadi's bumpy integration into American society contains humor without ever undercutting the difficulties.

In an unfortunate and revealing immigration encounter, Muna must answer a question about her country of origin, "We have none." "Occupation?" "Yes, we are." Such exchanges say a great deal without any grandstanding or preaching. Further, in our distressed economy, it's easy to empathize with Muna's struggle to find gainful employment, especially at the bank manager's level she held in Ramallah and now seeks. Undaunted, upbeat but decidedly embarrassed lest her family find out, she takes a job at a White Castle pretending to work at the bank next door where her sister drops her off. Amusing encounters follow. Meantime less happily Fadi begins high school as a junior, in class with his cousin.

It would have been so easy to demonize and exaggerate these non-Muslim, Palestinian-Americans' post-9/11 problems, not that they don't encounter their fair share. Muna's physician brother-in-law finds his patients leaving without explanation. He and we know why. But writer/director Cherien Dabis finds the humanity in all of this, including a Jewish teacher's responsiveness and understanding. Amreeka also soars with the warmth of Nisreen Faour's appealing performance. Technically, the music and sound fits with every scene in which it occurs and the art direction keeps it real.

For its touching depiction of, and affection for, lives carefully observed and humanely presented, Amreeka won the Critics Prize at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival. In English with some Arabic with English subtitles. At Landmark's Plaza Frontenac Cinema.

Sponsor Message

Become a Sponsor

Find KDHX Online

KDHX on Instagram
KDHX on YouTube
KDHX on SoundCloud
KDHX on Facebook
KDHX on Twitter
KDHX on flickr

Local Artist Spotlight


Dad Jr: Get Down. Hard.

Sun June 29

Graham Pagano

Mon June 23
Graham Pagano's debut album Quit Complaining is a high charged mix of old and new music. his old blues and classic country feel blended up with a rock and roll attitude makes this stripped down album explode…

KDHX Recommends

July
Saturday
26

Genevieve at Harvest Sessions 2014

Genevieve at Harvest Sessions 2014 Harvest Sessions welcomes Genevieve -- featuring Rebecca Ryan and Leslie Sanazaro -- to the West Pool Pavilion for a morning of acoustic music. This free Saturday morning concert series takes place at the Tower Grove Farmers'...


July
Sunday
27

88.1 KDHX Musical Merry-Go-Round Welcomes Sugar Free All-Stars

88.1 KDHX Musical Merry-Go-Round Welcomes Sugar Free All-Stars 88.1 KDHX Musical Merry-Go-Round welcomes Sugar Free All-Stars for a family matinee Sunday, July 27 at Noon. Kids under two are free. $8 advance tickets on sale now. Tickets available at the door for $10. Kids under two are free. For...


July
Thursday
31

Bradford Lee Folk & The Bluegrass Playboys

Bradford Lee Folk & The Bluegrass Playboys KDHX presents Bradford Lee Folk & The Bluegrass Playboys at The Stage, July 31 at 8pm. Tickets available online.   Born in Louisiana and raised in Missouri, Folk remembers watching his Dad pick the country blues on a...


Get Answers!

If you have questions or need to contact KDHX, visit our answers portal at answers.kdhx.org.

Online Users

5 users and 12792 guests online
Sign in with Facebook

SYSTEM: S5 Box

Login/My Account

Sign in with Facebook