I watched this movie last weekend and truly enjoyed it. It’s a little old but definitely not out-of-date. It reminded me a lot of my own family and when we first came to America, almost over 10 years ago. It made me think of all the insecurities and difficulties that my parents must have faced at the time.
Amreeka is a wonderful story of a mother and son who leave their troubled life in Palestine and move to rural Illinois. The innocence of the two characters is truly endearing. Muna (Nisreen Faour) is a divorced, single mother. Fadi (Melkar Muallem) is the son that convinces his mother to take the opportunity to move to America. The ups and downs of the relationship between this mother and son is beautiful! Muna and Fadi, like many other immigrants that come to the US, believe that they are leaving the prejudiced world of Palestine, for a much better world.
It becomes apparent that they are mistaken and have just exchanged the oppression of the Israelis for the prejudice of the post-9/11 atmosphere of the US. Yet, through it all, this movie is about the balance they try to find in this new and unfamiliar place.
The story line itself is based around the cliched, parent-to-child conversation of “We came to America for YOUR future,” but it does a great job of giving it a fresh feel.
The movie itself is in Arabic but once the movie begins you forget that you cannot understand what they are saying. I was so engrossed into the story that I even convinced myself that I understood Arabic perfectly well…haha. I was so surprised to see Alia Shawkat from the TV show Arrested Development (WSUPPP) and it made me love this movie that much more!
This movie is definitely a must-watch. It’ll make you cry and laugh and leave you with a feel-good feeling at the end.