Directed by James Gray (best known for Two Lovers) The Immigrant, nominated for the Palme d’Or at Cannes, depicts a young immigrant woman Ewa Cybulski, who finds herself alone on Ellis Island in New York after her sister is deported. Ewa quickly catches the attention of Bruno Weiss (Joaquin Phoenix) who wishes to capitalise on her attractiveness and coerces Ewa into selling herself, proclaiming that for her to leave Ellis Island will take a lot of money. Jeremy Renner stars as Orlando the Magician, anxious to save both Ewa and her ill-fated sister.
With a truly impressive cast, and some beautifully featured period details, I have real hopes for The Immigrant. As with all period films, I am always concerned that gravitas may lead to saccharine: but I am confident that with a cast of such calibre The Immigrant’s tone will remain grounded.