In movies such as George Clooney's Good Night, and Good Luck, Tom McCarthy, as an actor, has the rare ability to inhabit a realistic scene as if he were recruited on location; he fades into an ensemble in a good way, lending it a cool, observant energy, emerging only to lend bite or shape to a scene.
As the writer-director of The Station Agent and now The Visitor, he has a similar talent as a moviemaker. He both uses real locations unself-consciously and discovers their pockets of poetry.
The Visitor (Overture) Starring Richard Jenkins, Haaz Sleiman, Danai Gurira, Hiam Abbass. Directed by Thomas McCarthy. Rated PG-13 for brief strong language. Time 108 minutes.