A Better Life Reviews

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July 29, 2011
It speaks well enough about the fate of immigrants everywhere, especially those who want to work hard but end up being exploited.
July 28, 2011
Bichir carries it all with a measured performance of considerable emotion as the dad, clenched by so many years holding his breath, waiting for the knock at the door.
July 28, 2011
Not as insightful as it could've been but something to chew on for those who like their social commentary a touch on the light and fluffy side.
July 27, 2011
The didacticism takes the shine off Weitz's accomplishment, even if the film builds up enough empathy to generate slow-burning emotional impact.
July 15, 2011
A Better Life has more to offer than good intentions: it's sincere and credible, which is more than I can say about an awful lot of movies. Yet something about it kept me at arm's length: I felt the filmmakers' presence instead of...
July 15, 2011
Bichir delivers a powerful, nuanced performance as a stoic but complex character who treats everyone -- even those who have wronged him -- with a dignity he rarely receives.
July 15, 2011
The people here seem real, their world is shaky at best, and the political tension that permeates everything in this film feels palpable.
July 15, 2011
Personalizes the illegal immigrant experience and digs much deeper into what has become a national disgrace.
July 15, 2011
"A Better Life" might not change any minds about immigration policy, but it illuminates the conversation with context, compassion and understanding.
July 15, 2011
Notwithstanding its modest scope, "A Better Life" richly documents the life of an invisible man.
July 14, 2011
Weitz, who directed the excellent 2002 Hugh Grant movie, "About a Boy," once more does a sensitive job with iffy material.
July 14, 2011
A compassionate character study of a man modeling the values of heart, hard work, self-respect, and self-reliance to his spawn.
July 14, 2011
It's generic and small but manages to reel you in and surprise you with its grimness.
July 8, 2011
If we can see how things will play out long before the characters do, it's still powerful and, one gets the feeling, valuable - not just as a document of the immigration struggle but as a film.
July 8, 2011
A major star in Mexico, Bichir is quietly affecting as the father, a humble striver who faces loss at every turn.
July 7, 2011
The film's trajectory is rather predictable, but then so was the story told by "The Bicycle Thief." But the performances are pitch perfect...
July 1, 2011
It's straight, true and heartbreaking, a masterstroke of raw emotional minimalism.
July 1, 2011
Director Chris Weitz neatly avoids sanctimony by centering the engrossing story on a father-son relationship, letting the audience make up its own mind about the overarching matter of illegal immigration.
June 27, 2011
Bichir delivers a note-perfect performance of determination, defeat and pride.
June 27, 2011
Once you get past the cliched Spanglish dialogue and the sentimental tone of the early acts, "A Better Life" settles down into something both involving and moving.
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