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Playing a Drum

About the Movie

Lonely widower Professor Walter Vale has a boring life in Connecticut. He teaches only one class at the local college and is trying to learn how to play the piano, despite lacking the necessary musical talent. Walter is assigned to attend a conference about Global Policy and Development at New York University and give a lecture about a paper he co-authored. When he arrives at his New York apartment, he finds Tarek Khalil, a Syrian musician, and Zainab, a Senegalese street vendor, living there. He sympathizes with the illegal immigrants' situation and invites the couple to stay with him. Tarek invites him to go to his gig at Jules Live Jazz. Walter is fascinated with his African drum and Tarek offers to teach Walter how to play it. However, after an incident in the subway, Tarek is arrested and sent to a detention center for illegal immigrants. Walter has just hired a lawyer to defend Tarek when, out of the blue, Tarek's mother Mouna arrives at the apartment from Michigan. He invites her to stay in Tarek's room, and while trying to get Tarek released, Walter and Mouna get close to each other and he finds reasons to feel life can be exciting and worth living again.— This summary was written by Claudio Cavalho or Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The summary is found at ​

The Visitor

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