Everything is Illuminated (2005)

directed by Liev Schreiber
with: Elijah Wood, Eugene Hutz, Boris Leskin
based on a novel by Jonathan Safron Foer

A young jewish American, meticulous and dedicated collector of family related objects, goes to Ukraine in the search of his immigrant grandfather's past.

The film starts off almost as a stereotypical satire of ethnic comedy, but slowly evolves in the form of a serious obscure drama in a very effective way. The clash of cultures is interestingly portrayed, of course, not with an informative or social eye, but for mere entertainment, and it works out perfectly for American audiences. The movie has a great visual style, that when combined with the wonderful score, everything that surrounds the sequences seems to be adequate. I like this film because it is about the consequences of extreme human curiosity. It explores coincidences and destiny and how people always want to understand their roots and origins, to comprehend who they are. It narrows the gap of ethnic differences to help us understand that we are all truly not very different from each other.

It is funny, clever and easy to enjoy. More American films should be like this.

Very Recommended.
Rating: 7.5/10

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