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Saturday, July 07, 2007

Golden Door review from yesterday's Day and Night magazine in the Irish Independent

Golden Door (Nuovo Mondo)

Golden Door opens in Sicily in 1904 where peasant Salvatore (VincenzoAmato) decides to sell everything he owns to move his sons and hisold, superstitous mother to America. Propelled on by visions of gigantic food crops and coins falling fromthe skies, Salvatore and his family make the arduous sea journey on anemigrant ship to the US.

During the sailing, he falls for a mysteriousEnglish passenger (Charlotte Gainsbourg), whom he arranges to marry.But leaving the Old World behind — literally and figuratively — proves to be much harder than he thought.

Director Emanuele Crialese certainly has an ambitious, sweeping visionfor this magic-realist tale, but its fallow characterisation, and inert middle section, robs the film of any real emotional punch. Golden Door is most affective in the final section where it depicts the admission procedures the immigrants meet at Ellis Island, but the rest of the movie, like the characters' sea journey, is a long and uneven ride to that point.

Rating 3/5

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