‘The Immigrant’ gives Joaquin Phoenix room to explore character

May 21, 2014 10:37 AM

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LOS ANGELES — In the film The Immigrant, a dismal tale of survival in 1920s New York, Joaquin Phoenix shifts through a gallery of identities — from savior to cad and to pitiful loner.

His performance, often improvised with co-star Marion Cotillard, is skillfully layered, although the character wasn’t initially written in such a way.

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