A mostly lighthearted look at new immigrants' travails in the U.S., this fish-out-of-water comedy stars talented newcomer Nisreen Faour as a Palestinian divorcee who, with her teenage son (Melkar Muallem) in tow, leaves the West Bank for a better life in her sister’s home in Illinois. With her large, expressive eyes and radiant energy, Faour commands sympathy, even through weak dialogue and weaker plot points (her son doesn't mention that custom officials have confiscated a package containing their savings). Hiam Abbass and Yussef Abu Warda are solid as the sister and brother-in-law, middle-class suburbanites weathering an anti-Arab boycott, but writer-director Cherien Dabis too easily resolves or dismisses the characters' problems, making way for an upbeat ending. In English and subtitled Arabic.
Director: Cherien Dabis
Writer: Cherien Dabis
Cast: Nisreen Faour, Melkar Muallem, Hiam Abbass, Alia Shawkat, Jenna Kawar, Selena Haddad, Yussuf Abu-Warda, Joseph Ziegler, Andrew Sannie and Daniel Boiteau