Generally favorable reviews - based on 29 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 73 Ratings

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  • Starring: , ,
  • Summary: In a world of 6 billion people, it takes only one to change your life. In actor and filmmaker Tom McCarthy's follow-up to his award-winning directorial debut "The Station Agent," we get to know Walter Vale, a disillusioned Connecticut economics professor whose life is transformed by a chance encounter in New York City. Through newfound connections with virtual strangers, Walter is awakened to a new world and a new life. (Overture Films) Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 29
  2. Negative: 0 out of 29
  1. The Visitor, is, if anything, more imaginative and touching than his first.
  2. 90
    Eloquent and unassuming, it's a picture that hits home precisely because it doesn't overreach its grasp.
  3. Jenkins and The Visitor”make lovely music together. It’s a case of a veteran character actor slipping on a leading role like the most comfortable pair of pants in the world.
  4. 80
    Gives viewers a perceptive, deeply personal take on the timeless immigrant narrative, in which the most epic journey is finally one of self-discovery.
  5. Reviewed by: Anna Smith
    The tension dips occasionally but stick with it and you'l be richly rewarded.
  6. At first glance Walter isn't a guy you want to spend two hours with. But by the end of the film, you don't want to see him go. Jenkins is like that: He sneaks up on you and steals your heart with light-fingered skill.
  7. Reviewed by: Scott Foundas
    McCarthy unquestionably means well, but he's made one of those incredibly naïve movies that gives liberals a bad name, and which does more to regress the sociopolitical discourse than advance it.

See all 29 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 37
  2. Negative: 4 out of 37
  1. DavidF.
    May 31, 2008
    This is a perfect film. Loved every minute of it. Beautifully acted and directed. Go see this wonderful movie.
  2. UzK
    Feb 14, 2009
    Very touching. Loved the emotions exemplified in this film.
  3. MarcD.
    Apr 16, 2008
    Just a beautiful, elegant film. I wasn't expecting too much from this movie, but by the end, my heart was in my throat, and I had an amazing sympathy for the characters - partly a function of the story, but also because of some amazing acting performances. Richard Jenkins and Haaz Sleiman will be recognized, no doubt, but Hiam Abbass, as Tarek's mother, is spectacular. For any adult male who has a close relationship with his mother (like me!), or for those mothers who remain close with their adult children, this movie will grab you. Expand
  4. Aug 12, 2010
    Easily one of my favorite films in recent years. I have recommended this film countless times and it was equally as good on the second viewing. The blossoming of the professor character, given a new set of influences in his life, was realistic and a captivating story. If only all films had such a brilliant personal portrait as the main theme. Issues of the tragic impacts of illegal immigration are played out effectively, but to me was a side story to that of our professor finding himself. Expand
  5. Nan
    Apr 12, 2008
    Excellent performance by Richard Jenkins.
  6. MarilynD.
    Jul 26, 2008
    Delightfully entertaining! Beautiful, yet tragically depressing story.
  7. CharlotteB.
    Oct 31, 2008
    What a disgusting naive liberal white guilt film. White culture is uninspiring to Walter. Only Muslim culture has value. There is anti-Semitism in this film that is condoned, when his Jewish named neighbor is portrayed as gay and silly, talking about his dog sprinkles & his mother in Florida. This movie is the height of "guilty white liberalism" when Walter is only respectful of the Muslim characters & satires the non-Muslims. I was deeply disappointed and do not to be brainwashed that third world Syrian & Senegal culture has more dignity than Euro-American. Expand

See all 37 User Reviews