Crossing Over: Movie Review

We Pinoys can be considered as true testaments to the American Dream. How many of us idolize the Americans, strive to get a visa, and live in the United States for a better life? But in reality, this dream is not as good as it seems. Like everything else in this world, nothing is black-and-white, more so in becoming an immigrant in the land of the world’s super power. “Crossing Over” is a film that tackles the reality of how hard the life of illegal immigrants in a foreign land is and all the things they have to deal with. Can “Crossing Over” be successful in conveying the message it wants to bring?

"Crossing Over" brings to life different stories relating to US citizenship and somehow, the movie manages to get the different character’s paths, to cross. Max Brogan (Harrison Ford) is an immigrant officer working to find illegal aliens in the United States. He finds himself in crisis after he separates a young boy from her Mexican mother during one of her raids. There’s a story of a couple who would do anything in order to stay in the United States by getting a green card. There’s another story of a 15 year old Muslim girl who was arrested as she talks about the good side of 9-11, therefore bringing her whole family in jeopardy. A fourth story is about an Iranian and a Korean family that is about to be naturalized. Lastly, there is also a side of a wife of an immigration lawyer (Ashley Judd), who is struggling to find a home for an African orphan.

So what about “Crossing Over”? Was it able to “crossover” its sublime message? The simple truth is that this film will take you by surprise, but in a good way. It was able to paint a picture of reality that surrounds illegal citizens and those who are aiming for US citizenship. Some people might be ticked off by the slow pace of the film but in fact, it suits the serious tone and topic it delves into. It also chronicles a lot of lives, on our count, around 9 main characters are developed and yet, it never feels too rushed or overtly complex. The narrative here is the selling point of the film and you will never get bored because you are anticipating what happens next. We could have given this a perfect score if not for the cuts made on the film which we felt either affected a lot of the dialogues or deleted some intense, key scenes. Too bad though that “Crossing Over” is a limited release here in the Philippines. If ever you drop by Glorietta 4, Greenbelt 3 or Trinoma, be sure to catch this film!

Rating: 4 and a half reels

Why you should watch it:
- excellent eye opener. It was able to let audience know and feel the hardships of illegal immigrants in the United States
- a lot of unknown actors were included in the movie but they were brilliant nonetheless

Why you shouldn’t watch it:
- the number of storylines may be too much for some
- too many cuts were made in our opinion
- if you do not like serious films

Thanks to Viva International Pictures for bringing “Crossing Over” to our shores. “Crossing Over” will be shown at Glorietta 4, Greenbelt 3 and Trinoma cinemas starting September 16, 2009.

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