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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun and light hearted, despite mixed reviews
I liked this film for many reasons, the main being it was easy to understand thanks to its simple yet heart-warming plot, that opens up as the film progresses. Tom Hanks plays a Russian who enters a USA airport to travel to New York, but loses his own nationality as airport security discovers his country is in admist turmoil and trouble. So, as the troubled man he is,...
Published on 8 Jan 2007 by Picard

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "What is the purpose of your visit?"
This comedy focuses on some of the flaws in the immigration system in the US and exposes how sometimes strict rules have to be bent for things to make sense. Everything starts when Viktor Navorski arrives to the US and is stopped at immigration on the JFK airport because his passport is invalid. That is where the nonsense begins, since even though he speaks no English,...
Published on 22 Jun 2005 by Sebastian Fernandez


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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun and light hearted, despite mixed reviews, 8 Jan 2007
By 
Picard (USS Enterprise) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The Terminal [DVD] (2004) (DVD)
I liked this film for many reasons, the main being it was easy to understand thanks to its simple yet heart-warming plot, that opens up as the film progresses. Tom Hanks plays a Russian who enters a USA airport to travel to New York, but loses his own nationality as airport security discovers his country is in admist turmoil and trouble. So, as the troubled man he is, with a difficult language barrier, he has no choice but to settle into the airport to avoid the authorities. His expieriences in this chaotic place are both humerous and heart-warming as he falls in love with a regular american traveler.

The story has more to it than his consolodation into the airport, but its a good film if you want something thats easy to understand and watch, and does without the effects. Another great piece of filming from Speilberg!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Now endlessly arriving in the International Arrivals Lounge, 30 Dec 2005
By 
Joseph Haschka (Glendale, CA USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)   
Would you live 24/7 for nine months in the International Arrivals Lounge of a major airport for the chance to score with Catherine Zeta-Jones?
Say, honey, would you mind if I went off on a short trip?
Tom Hanks is Viktor Navorski arriving at New York's JFK. While in the air from Eastern Europe, his homeland of Krakozia - probably a chronic trouble spot in the Balkans - slips into a government coup. It's revoked all of its passports and, in response, the U.S. State Department has nullified all travel visas issued to Krakozian nationals. So, when going through Immigration, Viktor is told that he can neither enter the United States or fly back to the Old Country. The resident chief immigration officer, Frank Dixon (Stanley Tucci), allows him to stay in the International Arrivals Lounge - a overnight state of limbo that eventually drags into nine months. And since Viktor never got as far as Customs, what's in that can of peanuts that he guards so closely?
THE TERMINAL is built around the clever premise that you can, as frequent fliers can attest, lead a full life even if confined within the limits of an airport transit lounge: learn a foreign language, get a job, make new friends, eat well, acquire a trendy wardrobe, sleep, maintain one's personal appearance, and, if you're lucky, find Love.
Stanley Tucci is excellent as Dixon, who's at first in sympathy with Viktor's plight, even going so far as to stage manage a breach in security through which he hopes Navorski will bolt into the outside world (thus becoming some other agency's problem). Eventually, however, Frank's attitude hardens after Viktor embarrasses him in front of some government inspectors. Something about a goat.
I found Catherine Zeta-Jones's role as the distracted and romantically unfulfilled flight attendant Amelia vaguely unsatisfying. Perhaps it's because her on-screen appearances came at erratic moments and were all too brief. There ought to be a law against beauty such as hers.
This wasn't the year's Best Picture, but it is most definitely an Oscar-worthy performance by Tom Hanks. Just depicting an evolution of English language skills from virtually non-existent to functional-with-an-accent is worth the Best Actor award in itself. In this regard, Tom's performance is eminently believable and seamless. Also, there was arguably an Oscar nomination due Art Direction for the interior of the Arrivals Lounge, which seems so real, but, in reality, was a complete construct-from-scratch in a 747 hanger out in Southern California's Mojave Desert at a storage site for mothballed aircraft.
Spielberg/Hanks has to be one of Hollywood's greatest working partnerships (SAVING PRIVATE RYAN, BAND OF BROTHERS), and I'm prepared to see anything they create.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Terminal, 7 Sep 2005
This review is from: The Terminal [DVD] (2004) (DVD)
This film on its own proves that Spielberg is a multi-talented director. Released during the time that Speilberg took a new turn in directing and decided to get away from the aliens and head towards true storys on a smaller scale.
The Terminal is a heart-warming story, that at moments can make you laugh and at others cry as well. The story tells of a man called Viktor. Who after arriving at a JFK New York Airport, discovers that his country is in the middle of a civil war. Unable to get back to his country or even step out of the airport as he temporarily has no country, he is being forced to live at the airport's lounge. He then goes on to meet new friends, get a job, and discover a liking to a air stewardess.
Tom Hanks who plays 'Viktor' does a fantastic job at playing a convincing foreigner. Sourrounded by a the likes of Cathrine Zeta-Jones and other fairly well known stars, thay make a great cast.
Theres very little to have a go at with this film except maybe that it does tend to go on a little sometimes. Its a fairly lenghty film, which is the only reason I didn't give this film 5 stars.
The Terminal is a treat for the family and with the joint efforts of Spielberg and Hanks leading the front, whats to dount. Highly recommended for all ages.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding, Original, Multi-faceted and Technically Supreme, 3 Nov 2005
By 
Mr. R. P. Chauhan "spartan_logic" (London, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Terminal [DVD] (2004) (DVD)
When I first heard of the Terminal it grasped me as a film built around an experience but this film actually impressed and surprised me because it goes beyond the experience of being stuck in an airport in the contemporary world we are in and embraces the atmosphere of a cosmopolitan world with the airports of it being the hub.
Throughout the film you can't help but be amazed and entertained by this character's journey, realistic as it is and multi-dimensional as it captures his experiences with other characters who are quite expertly by Spielberg, introduced throughout the film. To add to which it is all done with a style that is oustanding, well edited, beautifully phased in and out of scenes and chronologically executed masterfully.
The unfortunate factor for Terminal is, it doesn't have Goblins, Aliens or a huge war atmosphere. It doesn't embody dramatic characters from history like Gangsters or Politicians. Quite simply the individuals on display are everyday people doing everyday jobs but that's what makes the plot of the film unique and entertaining.
In everyway a technically brilliant film but it entertains like a great film as well.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Spielberg Delivers, 18 April 2007
This review is from: The Terminal [DVD] (2004) (DVD)
At $20,000,000+ per movie, Tom Hanks always delivers. This movie takes the hustle and bustle environment that is a busy airport, and focuses in on one character, facing the problem of not being allowed to exit the airport due to a war being fought in his homeland.

Hanks character is "urged" to leave the airport by the airport management, because if he leaves the airport they will not be responsible for him. But Hanks discovers he has a sanctuary within the airport, due to not having citizenship anywhere else, and creates a life within the import, gets work, and even learns english.

We meet the various characters that work behind the scenes to keep airports running effectively. Catherine Zeta Jones plays the love interest of Hanks, offering continuity as a flight-attendant using Hanks to develop her character throughout the movie.This is a romantic look at one life within an environment notorious for busy people passing through.

The production of the movie is grand, you almost feel you know your way around the airport during the film. The large set which the film is shot in is large, and high budget, and also contributes to the overall authenticity of the setting.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Spielberg has still got it!, 6 Feb 2006
This review is from: The Terminal [DVD] (2004) (DVD)
I guess like many I didn't see the appeal of this film, but being a Spielberg fan I eventually got round to renting it on amazon. In his more recent films (AI and Minority Report) I felt that Steven was no longer firing on all cylinders as he can do. But over time these films grew on me, and Catch Me If You Can was a very good film, so The Terminal deserved a go.
This film is simple as a Spielberg film will get - one set, no blockbuster appeal, no heavy handed cgi effects. This was Steven saying, 'look, i can tell a story, and tell it damn well'. This film is beautiful in its warmth, truth and honesty. The acting is effortless and brilliant, Zeta Jones and Tucci raising a few eybrows with solid and encouraging performances.
The film probably lacks the appeal of regular viewing, and does verge on being a bit far-fetched at times, but you just gotta put that aside and enjoy the magical essence of the human spirit, which to me, is what the film is about, and captures so well.
Worth a go folks.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Terminal with Tom Hanks seen by the Loys, 10 Jan 2006
By A Customer
This review is from: The Terminal [DVD] (2004) (DVD)
The film was based on a real event and, while watching, you always had this fact at the back of your mind. The film story was interesting and entertaining all the way through and Tom Hanks gave a sterling performance, (as ever). I'm sure that the filmmakers expanded on the truth quite a lot and turned the concept of being stuck in between the politics of two countries quite a thought-provoking film. Light entertainment at its best.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "What is the purpose of your visit?", 22 Jun 2005
By 
Sebastian Fernandez (Tampa, Florida United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Terminal [DVD] (2004) (DVD)
This comedy focuses on some of the flaws in the immigration system in the US and exposes how sometimes strict rules have to be bent for things to make sense. Everything starts when Viktor Navorski arrives to the US and is stopped at immigration on the JFK airport because his passport is invalid. That is where the nonsense begins, since even though he speaks no English, the personnel of Homeland Security talk to him really slow as if that would change his understanding of a language with which he is unfamiliar. Things just escalate from there.
Viktor's country (Krakozia) has suspended his right of traveling with his passport due a political war at home that has the country in total chaos; basically there is no country. The problem is that he cannot enter the US, but he cannot return home either, so he is stranded in the airport. The solution: he has to remain in the International Transit Lounge while his situation is sorted out.
Little by little we see this individual figuring out how to survive in this strange world, filling us with a sense of desperation due to his situation, but at the same time with one of hope due to his ability to cope and figure things out. Hanks is excellent in transmitting the emotions of this character, and his portrayal of a foreign citizen with an accent resembling Bulgarian is praiseworthy.
The film revolves around Viktor's problem and his relationship with several people in the airport. First there is Frank (Tucci), the acting Field Commissioner of Homeland Security, who wants to get rid of Viktor in order to have less to worry about when the time comes for the inspection that will determine if he gets the position for good. Then there is Amelia Warren (Zeta-Jones), who is a stewardess that is having an affair with a married man, and who Viktor falls for at first sight. Finally, there is the relationship with other employees at the airport, which allows us to see the values of this man and how these values and convictions affect the lives of those that surround him and learn to love him.
If you have ever been in the situation of having to go through security as a foreigner in a US airport (even with al the proper documentation), you will understand how the main character feels. But even if you have not experienced this before, I believe you will appreciate this film's qualities, which have to do with doing everything you can to survive and achieve your goals, using the power of friendship to surmount any obstacles and realizing that sometimes bending the rules is the right course of action.
Besides the performance by Tom Hanks, this movie counts with a Stanley Tucci at the top of his game. This actor is so successful in playing annoyed guys with a miserable life that it is uncanny. Zeta-Jones provides a visual enjoyment with her beauty and an OK portrayal of Amelia, which only is sub par in the scenes that involve high emotional levels, since in my opinion she exaggerates the emotions in these cases. The final result is a nice film that will make you think and laugh, and hopefully entertain you for a little while too. - 3.5 stars.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An enjoyable movie, 3 Dec 2006
By 
Mr. P. Datta "Pritthijit" (Stockton on Tees, Teesside) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Terminal [DVD] (2004) (DVD)
The Terminal [2004] is an enjoyable and well humoured movie about a foreigner fleeing his country from political unrest to settle in the United States. The only problem is he cannot enter the States legally or return to his country due to an invalid passport. There are bureaucracy inadequacies that hinder this move. Imagine the thought being stranded in the world international JFK aiport for a number of days, just to wait for fortune to turn in your favour. His character Viktor Novorskiy creates havoc and amusement by indulging unusual habits by scrounging for money through trolley unloading and using his charm to impress a beautiful woman (Catherine Zeta Jones) and building a strong bonding with the airport.

To cut a long story short, Terminal gives you a real flavour of how foreigners as in the case Victor exile from their country to escape from unwanted problems. It is a widespread problem faced by the Western countries, the influx of foreigners from war affected countries. What I have mentioned above is the general gist of the movie. It deal with the issue on hand in a humourous manner, but tackles the seriousness of the issue.

Tom Hanks has proven his versality as troubled and cheerful foreigner in the role, as one the leading actors of Hollywood. I felt Catherine Zeta Jones felt like a cameo as she made brief appearances. The movie is really enjoyable to watch where you actually feel for the character. The key question does the ending reach a satisfactory conclusion? Well, I will not reveal no more information. You find out for yourself.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "The Terminal" is more a Hanks movie than a Spielberg one, 29 April 2005
By 
Lawrance M. Bernabo (The Zenith City, Duluth, Minnesota) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The Terminal [VHS] (VHS Tape)
"The Terminal" is certainly based on a contrived situation, but there is nothing wrong with that being the case. Viktor Navorski (Tom Hanks) arrived in the United States at JFK Airport in New York City, clutching a bag and a can of Planter's Peanuts. Unfortunately while his plane was flying across the Atlantic there was a military coup in his native land of Krakozia. According to the bureaucrats his nation no longer exists, which means his passport is no longer valid, his visa has been rejected, and he cannot be allowed to enter the United States (that is, to go outside the airport). He cannot be allowed to return back to his warn torn country. To add insult to injury, when Customs official Frank Dixon (Stanley Tucci) tries to explain to Navorski why he is "unacceptable," the poor guy does not understand enough English to really understand what is happening to him.
Yes, you can certainly reach a translator on the phone if you do not have one on hand and the government has regulations for what happens in situations like this that do not allow people to fall through the cracks. But if we can entertain a willing suspension of disbelief to watch movies about catastrophic climatic changes and teenagers given mutant powers by the bite of a radioactive spider we can enjoy Steven Spielberg's fable about a man stuck in an airport terminal and refusing to lose his optimism or his humanity. Besides, there really was somebody who was forced to stay in an airport terminal, an Iranian refugee whose his passport and United Nations refugee certificate had been stolen (of course it was Charles De Gaulle Airport and French officials who refused to let the man go anywhere).
Hanks, looking rather frumpy, provides another performance that shows he is at his best as a leading man when he is proving himself to be a character actor. The obvious comparisons will be to "Forrest Gump," but this one is better; note that neither his accent nor his characterization lend themselves easily to imitation this time around. Some of his most effective moments are when he is speaking in his foreign tongue, where the words are never understood but the emotional meanings are always clear. He plays a character that is told he cannot leave the airport terminal and so he does not leave the airport terminal. We are not sure why, but the idea that he is from an Eastern European country, albeit a fictional one, seems to be the explanation since when he is afforded an opportunity it is the idea he is being watched that detracts him from leaving.
The story of "The Terminal" is basically about the holding pattern that Navorski is in while living at Gate 67. As he goes through his routines the circles of his existence keep encountering a small cast of characters including Gupta Rajan (Kumar Pallana), the janitor who likes to mop floors and watch people ignore the signs and fall on their butts, and Amelia (Catherine Zeta-Jones), the flight attendant who loses a heel on her shoe in front of Navorski doing just that. Meanwhile our hero has to deal with just surviving living in an airport terminal. Of course he does more than that, and as you would imagine he becomes something of a cult hero to those who work in the terminal as he not only endures but also perseveres.
Yes, there are some holes in the story. In the last act of the film they seem to remember the subplot regarding Navorski as the intermediate between airport worker Enrique Cruz (Diego Luna) and the lovely INS agent (Zoe Saldana) who rejects his visa application every day of the week and jump ahead to a happy ending. Again, you have to remember that this story is not a linear narrative but one that circles around, sometimes going down and sometimes up. You should just sit back and enjoy the ride and keep telling yourself this is not really a Steven Spielberg movie, it is a Tom Hanks movie.
You will also fall into the traps of various expectations with regards to the villain and the beautiful girl of the piece. But neither Dixon nor Amelia fits the stereotype and these somewhat rude awakenings serve to remind us that this film is about something else. That is because the biggest case of misdirection comes from the fact that we forget the question of why Navorski has come to America. This is just as well because you never would have guessed the reason and where "The Terminal" is different from other Spielberg movies is that the big moment really is a small moment.
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The Terminal [DVD]
The Terminal [DVD] by Steven Spielberg (DVD - 2005)
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