Alert
Close

Help pack a million meals for struggling seniors on Sept. 11. Volunteer today

Highlights

Open

 

Movies for Grownups

 

Caucasian couple looking at a laptop computer together

Horoscope

Virgo - AARP Horoscope

Look at what your future holds if your birthday is between August 23 & September 22

Contests & Sweeps

Enter the $50K Picture Your Retirement Sweepstakes. Ends 8/31/15. No purchase necessary. Enter for Official Rules.

AARP REALPAD

The tablet with free 24/7 customer support. Learn More

Most Popular

Viewed

A Better Life

Academy Award-nominated Mexican actor Demián Bichir plays the role of an undocumented father

Generational conflicts are nothing new. Yet director Chris Weitz’s film refuses to wallow in sentimentality or cliché. Instead, he paints a sobering portrait of one divided family that makes for a short course on the immigration debate. Galindo has been in the United States for years, but because he snuck into the country, he is caught in a jurisdictional shadow world. He is honest, dedicated, industrious — and illegal. But Galindo’s son was born here, making him a U.S. citizen. So the boy, with no ties to his father’s homeland, cannot fathom his dad’s up-by-the-bootstraps immigrant mentality.

How all this works out onscreen is what makes the film something special. In a heartbreaking scene, he explains to Luis the fatherly love that, for years before he bought the vehicle, drove him to get up every morning and stand on street corners hoping for a low-wage work as a day laborer. If he’s sent back to “the other side,” what will happen to his child?

By the end of A Better Life, that question is resolved, but it’s not a resolution that guarantees closure. And that, after all, may be the film’s greatest success. By giving a human face to a contentious dialogue, it forces us to ask ourselves questions about compassion and empathy for society’s underdogs. Is Carlos Galindo unworthy of our respect? Or is he the kind of person whose hard work makes the United States stronger? It’s not hard to figure out what side of the issue this haunting and beautiful film comes down on.

You may also like: More movie reviews.

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts

Processing

Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.

Your Scoop on Cinema

Movies for Grownups is focused on films with distinct relevance to a 50-plus audience. In reviews, previews and interviews, we look for actors and themes that speak to the experiences of older moviegoers. Find more about us on:

 

Advertisement
100 Must-See Movies for Grownups

100 Must-See Movies for Grownups

By Bill Newcott
E-book
January 2015


A treasure trove of delightfully offbeat recommendations for discerning moviegoers, from the beginnings of film right up the present.

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Live Nation

Members save 25% or more when buying tickets in groups of four from Ticketmaster.

Cirque Du Soleil

Members save 15-30% on tickets to live Cirque du Soleil shows.

Member Benefit AARP Regal 2

Members pay $8 for Regal ePremiere tickets purchased online. Conditions apply.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! Members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.

Rewards for Good

Your Points Balance:

Learn More

Earn points for completing free online activities designed to enrich your life.

Find more ways to earn points

Redeem your points to save on merchandise, travel, and more.

Find more ways to redeem points

Advertisement