Golden Door 
Set in 1913, GOLDEN DOOR begins in a treacherous, barren, and rocky area of the Sicilian countryside. On advice from a stranger, a widowed father named Salvatore Mancuso (Vincenzo Amato) decides to make the difficult voyage to America with his two sons (one of whom is deaf and mute) and his stubborn, highly superstitious mother, Fortunata (Aurora Quattrocchi). Just before boarding the boat, they meet Lucy (Charlotte Gainsbourg), a mysterious and refined British woman who pretends to be with the Mancuso family while their pictures are being taken. During their journey, Lucy tells Salvatore she needs to find a man to marry before arriving in New York. The reasons are never fully explained, but Salvatore is attracted to her, and so he agrees. After arriving at Ellis Island, the family must endure the long battery of tests that are part of the standard entrance procedure. The plot of GOLDEN DOOR is simple, but the film is not, thanks to interesting stylistic choices. What differentiates GOLDEN DOOR from other films of its genre are the surrealist, imaginative avenues it takes most unexpectedly. Amid a sea of authentic costumes and realistic sets, director Emanuele Crialese places playful scenes of stunning beauty. This gives the film an open feel and an optimism one would never expect from the opening sequence, which is bleak, to say the least. As the characters travel to America, their minds open up to a new way of seeing. The experience of the journey is presented as difficult, but never horrific, and the strength of the characters is in their ability to remain dignified, even under potentially humiliating scenarios.