Prove that confinement can work in the median of film
Based loosely on the true life story of Mehran Karimi Nasseri, an Iranian refugee who lived in a Paris airport terminal for 17 years- 'The Terminal' is an account of Viktor Navorski (Tom Hanks), an Krakozhian Tourist who, upon arriving at JFK International Airport, finds that his passport is no longer valid due to a civil war conflict occurring in his home nation. Due to the nature of events that are happening in his country, Navorski cannot leave to return home but also cannot pass through the airports doors and onto America, as such he is 'UNACCEPTABLE' everywhere. A man without a home, a nationality or anything besides the purpose to complete a task he promised his deceased dad, Navorski cannot leave the Airport and is forced to live there until his future is sorted. Whilst staying at this strange location, he encounters numerous different people who show him different things in regards to his life, including friendship, kindness and love. With a constant interference from Customs and Border Protection Head Frank Dixon (Stanley Tucci) who seeks to make matters worse for the poor traveller, and fleeting visits from Flight attendant Amelia Warren (Catherine Zeta-Jones) as she passes through, the main principle cast is made up. Learning to adjust to the temporary way of life that he must follow, the film chronicles the time that is stayed in the airport and the impact the man has on many peoples lives.
As can be seen, from the plot of this film, this narrative is a very simple but tender account of a different life story. With a fairly unseen plot-type seen in this film, when compared to other movies, ' The Terminal' is a film that feels original throughout.
Tom Hanks performs his best acting since 'Forest Gump' as the travelling Krakozhian although his accent takes a little getting used to for those who are familiar with the actors voice. His mannerisms and style he invokes into the character, flesh him out both properly and appropriately. By the end of the film it is easily plausible for this person to be a real character, and this is down to the actors talent of showcasing him to the audience. Audience members will have both empathy and a great deal of sympathy for the character, this is what drives the film forward. For all the scenes that Catherine Zeta-Jones makes an appearance, not many but most carrying real heart, her character swallows up the screen. Being the main call of the interaction that the title character has, the chemistry between her and Hanks is always subtle but likewise always there. It is a shame that as an actress, she is never given these sort of roles in general as she fits into these type of characters easily. Stanley Tucci is also very subtle, but in a different context entirely. His antagonist is subtle in the way the alludes the plot and carries the tension that the audience feels. Part nasty, part perfectionist, his actions are never seen as unjust but more just unfair. You feel for the man who is put into an awkward position in regards to his job and other commitments. Through the way that this character is acted, audience members feel empathy for him and as such should never feel anger in his direction.
In this film it is also nice to see smaller actors taking up key roles that bulk out the main narrative, pre Avatar Zoe Saldana is the stand out in her role as Dolores Torres, an immigration officer who has day to day run-ins with Navorski.
Bearing in mind that for ninety percent of the film, Spielberg shoots in only the Airport, it is amazing what he can show with little space. Each scene feels completely different from the last, and when key locations are repeated they never feel so. This allows the film to feel big, and for the drama element to come through more easily. It is proof that a movie can be produced anywhere and still work.
Overall 'The Terminal' is a heart felt and tender tale of a simple human life and the people he touches in it. Not intent on showing key action scenes or over the top locations, this film feels more than happy arriving at a more slower pace - slower but one that feels suited to the material. The lead cast perform their roles accordingly and carry the film through whilst showing real human emotion. A film that shows the immense experience that the director holds, Spielberg has done it again: created a film that could become ageless.