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A Palestinian single mother and her son resettle in the American Midwest with bittersweet results, in first-time director Cherien Dabis' gentle fish-out-of-water comedy drama Amreeka. Nisreen Faour stars as divorcée Mouna, a resident of the West Bank who works as a local bank manager while raising her 16-year-old son, Fadi (Melkar Muallem), on the side. Each day, the two must put their lives in jeopardy by driving through potentially lethal Middle Eastern checkpoints to accomplish their daily business, but their situation changes dramatically when Mouna finally succeeds at getting a green… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 87%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"You'll end up baffled that a film built on such shaky foundations can end up being so impossibly sweet."
‑ David Jenkins, Time Out
"Amreeka makes its points with gentle humour and engaging performances -- especially Faour, who makes Muna so likeable it's impossible not to cross your fingers and hope her luck is about to change."
‑ Linda Barnard, Toronto Star
"Enjoyable but uneven, Amreeka is an unlikely comic take on the plight of the displaced, at home and abroad."
‑ Sophie Ivan, Film4
"In attempt to sustain momentum, the film begins to lurch from comic-book realism to join-the-dots melodrama."
‑ Tom Seymour, Little White Lies
"The political issues are a little heavy handed but the story - partly drawn from the director's own experience - works best when it focuses on the personal."
‑ Steve Rose, Guardian [UK]
"Writer-director Cherien Dabis too easily resolves or dismisses the characters' problems, making way for an upbeat ending."
‑ Andrea Gronvall, Chicago Reader
"Director Cherien Dabis' debut feature is a surprising, humorous, moving and very human story about a Palestinian family's emigration to Illinois on the eve of the Iraq war."
‑ Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune
"It sounds heavygoing but if anything Amreeka is a little too sweet and cosy for its own good."
‑ Allan Hunter, Daily Express
"This is a vulnerable but proud woman who we can't help but like."
‑ David Edwards, Daily Mirror [UK]
"It's charming and laidback, preferring wry, compassionate humour to politicking."
‑ Simon Kinnear, Total Film
"A feel-good comedy about a Palestinian mother who moves to rural Illinois with her teenaged son, Amreeka is a kind of stealth political film that confronts issues of ethnic tension and American xenophobia."
‑ Liam Lacey, Globe and Mail
"A good-hearted film about the resilience of the human spirit."
‑ Richard Nilsen, Arizona Republic
"Not a subtle film, but an attractive, affecting one."
‑ Philip French, Guardian [UK]
"The film is more gentle than harsh, relying on a very fine performance from the charming Faour and settings in Palestine and Illinois that seem very real."
‑ Derek Malcolm, This is London
"Likeable but lightweight, Dabis' emigration tale plays largely for laughs, sapping some of the drama from the storyline."
‑ David Parkinson, Empire Magazine
More reviews for Amreeka on Rotten Tomatoes

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