starring Paddy Considine, Samantha Morton, Sarah Bolger, Emma Bolger
screenplay by Jim Sheridan & Naomi Sheridan
directed by Jim Sheridan
***/**** Image A Sound A Extras B+
starring Ewan McGregor, Albert Finney, Billy Crudup, Jessica Lange
screenplay by John August, based on the novel by Daniel Wallace
directed by Tim Burton
by Walter Chaw Jim Sheridan's In America sees the nation's shores as the limits of a grand, dilapidated moviehouse, introduced at the border with The Lovin' Spoonful's "Do You Believe in Magic?" and sustained by the ideas that all deaths are dimpled with nobility, and that all life is instilled with the fever dream of an insomniac's carnival. Sheridan's all-night ice cream parlors are, of course, Edward Hopper paintings populated by pink-clad waitresses, while screaming men haunt his rundown tenement brownstones ("This house isn't haunted, it's a magic house"--referring to the domicile, then America), artists and mystics marooned on emotional floes by some seismic existential divorce. And his heroes are a family, aliens in America illegally who discover that their only ward against life's necessary evils is a faith in imagination and a fingernail declaration of hope.