The Beautiful Country - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Beautiful Country Reviews

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April 21, 2019
A devastating journey full of determination.
½ April 10, 2019
As Hans Petter Moland finally won his Silver Berlin Bear for "Out Stealing Horses" I decided to celebrate with a film of his that remained unknown for me for a long time. It's no apperent reason for it, this film even has the mighty Terrence Malick listed as one of the producers.

"The Beautiful Country" is mainly about "Binh". He get's out of a city in Vietnam to find his mother in Saigon. From there he flees again, leaving his mother but bringing his much younger brother. They ends up in Malaysia, in a detention camp. Here he meets the lovely "Ling" and together they get out for the true destination - the USA.
Here a new life starts, but "Binh" is not at the end of his mission just yet. He is looking for his father, that left him and his mom after the war and now he wants answers.

This is a very enjoyable ride. It's never boring and the characters never stay for too long at the same place - it's constantly moving. The pace is excellent and the cast is really good. Nick Nolte is the biggest name, but he does not get much time on screen. Bai Ling looks like she is twenty - and still does really, and is probably doing one of her best parts here. I'm just guessing since I haven't seen much of her other work, but she usually does roles in pretty weak films. The best actor here is still the lead, portrayed by the very unknown Damien Nguyen, that only did two movies in total.

This is a pretty gentle film, I believe it's rated for audiences above twelve years old. It works just fine, even if it won't suit most of the younger audiences tastes.

I feared this would be a somewhat flat film but it certainly weren't. It's a drama, an exciting one. It builds up so greatly and the ending is also the great and very rewarding climax. An underrated film, from one of the best Norwegian directors. Now he's finally getting some shine outside the country and that is well deserved.

7.5 out of 10 cans of green paint.
February 25, 2013
The Beautiful Country is a very touching film about the hardship of a half American boy in Vietnam and his lonely existence as an outsider everywhere, both in his own country and culture, which reject him, and as a foreigner in America. The terribly difficult trip to America and suffering along the way remind us what our own ancestors went through--the immigrant experience and the lack of acceptance, the grief of the passing of those who die on the journey,and the hard work here that is much the same as the hard work back home. It is a beautiful film that follows Binh's pilgrimage to find acceptance and a home, and well worth seeing.
½ December 25, 2012
Damien Nguyen does a really fantastic job in the main role.
December 18, 2012
An amazing story that's told well. Binh's journey is tragic and emotional. This movie has a bittersweet ending. I can only watch this movie every couple years as it really shakes me up and makes me appreciate how easy my life is.
½ September 14, 2012
Damien Nguyen does a really fantastic job in the main role.
May 13, 2012
A very good movie! Quality film, great sets, great scenery, good acting, good story, just a good movie all around.
February 8, 2012
Post Vietnam war - A mixed-race young man travels to find his father in America after being discriminated against in his own country for not being full Vietnamese. The harshness of his life feels painfully real - this one is for adults.
January 31, 2012
first i wanted to know if the Vietnamese countryside was really that beautiful, then i wanted to know if the rich ppl in Saigon really behave that way toward their servants in 1990, then i started to doubt if the Malaysian refugee camps were really as depicted (detainees could move about freely, men & women were bunked next to one another), then i really question if a transpacific cargo ship would provide their "slaves" with the privacy & luxury to personal hygiene... then i found out that the min wage in Taxes was $3.80 per hour in 1990, when our protagonist was hired as a ranch hand at $2/hr, "not a cent more"...

But if you can overlook these & the abrupt corny ending, it is a tale rich in drama. Make no mistake that i liked the movie. It was a good try -- it shed light on the "bui doi" (a derogatory term that refers to a Vietnamese-born child fathered by an American soldier during the Vietnam War).
Super Reviewer
January 25, 2012
Slow paced, yet intriguing. I should take away 1/2 a star for the unsatisfying ending, but I just couldn't make myself do it. This was very well done, very moving, and very well casted. No Disney ending here, but nice enough to not get me too mad...
December 10, 2011
Excellent ensemble piece about hope, perseverance, belonging. Highly Recommended.
½ October 1, 2011
Vynikající drama o jednom velk (C)m putování, s ...... koncem.Dob(TM)e zvolení herci(Tim Roth i na mal (C)m prostoru uhraje op>t velk (C) v>ci) posouvají p(TM)íb>h v 3/4dy správn 1/2m sm>rem a pro m> neznám 1/2 norsk 1/2 re 3/4is (C)r Hans Petter Moland si s komplexním multikulturním p(TM)íb>hem pln 1/2m emocí poradil na v 1/2bornou.Mimochodem Bai Ling zde p(TM)edvedla, 3/4e se neztratí ani v náro?n>jší látce a je škoda, 3/4e obecn> hraje vícem (C)n> v p***vinách, ne 3/4 v podobn> kvalitních projektech.
July 6, 2011
Stunningly shot but with gut wrenching harsh reality, this sums up the life of a multi-ethnic immigrant from Vietnam on his journey to the USA. A strong recommendation!
½ July 6, 2011
what a beautiful movie. understated and beautifully shot
June 21, 2011
Great story and well told. To my friends working with or interested in refugee, human trafficking, and immigration issues, this is a must see. For those that care for a deep, touching human story, this will not disappoint.
½ June 7, 2011
Warning to Netflix viewers - the description on Netflix is *not* at all indicative of the depth of this movie's pathos!

This is a hauntingly beautiful but deeply tragic movie on so many levels. It explores issues of being an outcast, ugliness vs. beauty, the bonds of family, the tenacious character of hope, the effects of war that continue on long after 'peace' is documented. The movie calmly scans the horizon of human nature, casually panning both breathtaking love and self-sacrifice as well as harrowing greed and cruel disinterest.

The pacing is slow and thoughtful disturbed by only a few outbursts of raw emotion. If the subject matter were not so deeply sorrowful, this would be an incredible movie. Not that sorrow shouldn't be dealt with, but simply that this movie provides so little cause for hope in the midst of the varied suffering it portrays.

There is no sense of closure in any of the film's characters (except for those who physically die - those who die on the inside are left hanging just as much as their living counterparts). We are introduced to a variety of intriguing characters who could be the subject of whole movies on their own, but we receive only glimpses of them, learning almost nothing more about them than the main character Binh learns about them. In this respect, there is a heavy emphasis on realism. Binh knows no more about how the lives of those around him - or his own life - turn out. The viewer remains just as in the dark as he, uncertain of whether to hope for something better or simply resign themselves to the reality of instances of true hopelessness.

Don't watch this movie if you're depressed already. But it certainly is worth watching.
May 31, 2011
A very good movie! Quality film, great sets, great scenery, good acting, good story, just a good movie all around.
April 25, 2011
I had to see it for a Literature class. very nice movie.
April 6, 2011
Great story of a Vietnamese boy trying to find is American Father.
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