Picks and Pans Review: Crossing Over

updated 03/09/2009 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 03/09/2009 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Harrison Ford, Ashley Judd, Ray Liotta, Jim Sturgess | R |

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Going where Traffic (2000), Crash (2004) and similar, lesser ensemble dramas have gone before, Crossing Over hopes to illustrate a macro social and political problem—the overburdened immigration system—with a series of micro stories. Its diverse characters, who reside in Los Angeles, include an honorable immigration-enforcement agent (Ford), a crusading defense lawyer (Judd), a corrupt bureaucrat (Liotta) and several recent arrivals (Sturgess, Alice Braga, Justin Chon), both legal and illegal. Predictably, many of their paths eventually cross. While competently acted, Crossing moves its characters about with all the subtlety of a football coach diagramming plays on a blackboard.

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