THE BEAUTIFUL COUNTRY
"The Beautiful Country" is a lush and unconventional movie about the struggles of a Vietnamese refugee who journeys from his impoverished country to the culture shock of west Texas, via Manhattan, in search for his American biological father.
Damien Nguyen is a revelation as a character who embodies a cross-cultural legacy marginalized by forces such as America's slave labor trade. Nick Nolte brings his hard-bitten charisma to bear as the stoic rancher who must, however humbly, acknowledge his unexpected progeny from a long-ago expression of personal imperialism.
This haunting drama casts a wide swath that veers between obvious cliches and intensely visceral truths. The contrast is startling.
Rated R. 125 mins. (B) (Three Stars)