That so many filmmakers see immigration as a rich source of story material is understandable. To better understand this topic, I’ve compiled a list of the 10 Best Immigration Movies of All Time to help you get started.
None of the films on this list are solely concerned with immigration; rather, they use it as a springboard for examining a variety of human emotions and experiences. These films employ immigration in creative ways to entertain, communicate a message, or simply tell a compelling tale, regardless of one’s own beliefs about the topic. There are no spoilers in this article. Scarface and The Godfather Part II are excellent choices for those interested in the immigrant crime subgenre.
A Better Life (2011)
An illegal immigrant tries to make a life and reconcile with his son while residing in the United States. Here’s why it’s noteworthy: Many policymakers and observers on immigration overlook the fact that people will go to great lengths to protect their children.
In America (2002)
According to filmmaker Jim Sheridan’s own experiences in New York City, a group of Irish immigrants arrive in the Big Apple and appear to be illegal immigrants. The following are some of the reasons why this is noteworthy: There are significant parallels between the difficulties faced by European immigrants and those faced by immigrants from other regions of the world in the film. Few films depict the experience of immigrant children in the United States.
The Big Sick (2017)
The Big Sick depicts the story of a stand-up comic, born in Pakistan, who falls in love with an American-born woman, a relationship that alienates his family and causes him to lose his job. The following are some of the reasons why this is noteworthy: The film explores one of life’s most significant decisions: whether or not to marry. The risk of losing one’s family when marrying outside one’s religion or culture is greater for immigrants – and even natives – than for anyone else. There are few mainstream American movies depicting life as an immigrant Muslim Muslim.
They are depicted in this book as a Jewish immigrant family in their early 20th century attempts to prosper in an American culture that seems to place a different importance on family. In the film Avalon, Elijah Wood played a youngster listening to his immigrant grandfather narrate the narrative of their arrival in Baltimore on the Fourth of July, many years before he acted in The Lord of the Rings. The following are some of the reasons why this is noteworthy: Like Namesake, Avalon depicts a time in American history that few of us are familiar with.
6. Namesake (2006)
A young Indian couple makes a life and a family in the United States based on the novel by Jhumpa Lahiri. The following are some of the reasons why this is noteworthy: Immigrant parents and their American-born children’s conflict in the film is a microcosm of the daily struggles that Americans face across the country. Bend It Like Beckham, a film situated in the United Kingdom, has similar themes.
5.Well-Founded Fear (2000)
Filmmakers Shari Robertson and Michael Camerini (see below) have created a documentary that illustrates the process of asylum decision-making through the perspective of both government employees and those who are interviewed in an effort to gain asylum in the United States. The following are some of the reasons why this is noteworthy: In an interview, Michael Camerini explained that the inspiration for Well-Founded Fear came from his desire to document the influx of refugees and migrants following the fall of the Berlin Wall. In the INS Asylum offices we learned the world was here and we could tell that tale. We sat in on 50 cases and then filmed another 50. Until now, independent filmmakers have not had the opportunity to chronicle the process. “That’s what this profession is about,” an asylum officer says in the film. You have a say in the fate of other people’s children.
4.Gran Torino (2008)
He plays a grizzled elderly man who watches as his life and community undergo upheaval. The famous statement, “Get off my lawn,” can be heard in the film. The following are some of the reasons why this is noteworthy: As the script illustrates, Eastwood becomes unexpectedly immersed in the lives of his Hmong neighbors.
3.District 9 (2009)
The movie’s central theme is the ability to empathize with someone who is different from ourselves. Sasha Polakow-Suranksy, author of Go Back To Where You Came From, says that the film’s opening scenes depicting poor local residents who advocate killing ‘them,’ burning their businesses, and kicking them out were based on actual footage from the year before in which real people rather than actors were talking about the immigrants in their communities – not the extraterrestrial crustaceans. The following are some of the reasons why this is noteworthy: It is one of the few science fiction films in which the aliens arrive not as invaders (Independence Day) or as one lone alien (E.T.).
2. Moscow on the Hudson (1984)
In the Cold War era, Robin Williams portrays a Soviet musician who defected to the United States, where he meets other immigrants struggling to achieve the American Dream. Films that include references to the Declaration of Independence and the pledge taken during citizenship ceremonies are given an extra point. The following are some of the reasons why this is noteworthy: In the words of Ronald Reagan, “conservatism” is defined as the belief that America is a particular place where people may live free in a land of opportunity and be welcomed no matter their place of birth.
1.How Democracy Works Now (2010)
No doubt, How Democracy Works Now is the best documentary series about government. In a previous post, I said that “nothing comes close.” More than 187 8-hour days of footage were used to create Shari Robertson and Michael Camerini’s 12-part film series. In and out of Congress, as well as in the states of Iowa and Arizona, immigration issues are depicted in this film. The following are some of the reasons why this is noteworthy: Previously, I reported that “viewers are inside the room as senior Senate employees meet with one another and their Senators to create legislation.” When groups representing a wide range of ideologies meet with senators and members of Congress, you can count on us to be there. Finally, viewers are taken to places they’ve never been before. “