Wayne Kramer definitely knows how to make solid movies. His Vegas-noir debut, The Cooler, was a nifty little gem with some terrific performances from its cast (Bill Macy, Mario Bello, and an Oscar-nommed Alec Baldwin). Then, Kramer drifted into Tony Scott/Domino territory with the out-of-control but brilliant actioner Running Scared, a movie so deranged and violent that I still feel like I need to take a shower. With his latest film, Crossing Over (B), Kramer has gone the Crash/Shortcuts route, and the results are his weakest film. But that doesn't mean it isn't worth watching and that it's not entertaining. Crossing Over features a sprawling narrative focusing on the plight of the illegal immigrant in present day Los Angeles. Neither a liberal out-cry or an outright condemnation of immigration, the film looks at both sides of the issue, with a starry cast of characters who all intersect with each other throughout the occasionally overly-melodramatic plot. Harrison Ford is a disillusioned ICE agent who busts up sweat-shops every day; he's also prone to go above and beyond his job description. Ray Liotta is a slimy green-card processor who coerces a gorgeous Australian illegal immigrant, played by a frequently topless Alice Eve, into a sexual relationship in exchange for proper citizenship papers. Ashley Judd is an immigration attorney trying to adopt an orphaned African child. Summer Bishil, from last year's underrated dark satire Towelhead, is an Islamic high school student who gives a speech in her class that most people construe as being in support of the 9/11 suicide bombers. What happens to her family is extremely dark. Kramer pumps up his film with some sex and some bloody violence, but there are far too many coincidences in the plot for the entire story to feel truly authentic. The practice of "honor killings" is explored in the film, which really hits a note of relevance; this sort of thing happened a few months ago in New York. Kramer, himself a South African immigrant, clearly had a lot on his mind with this film, and I think his heart is in the right place. But in the end, he proves that he's a better director than he is a writer, as most of the plot gets tidied up too neatly. But I'd take a film like this one any day over some disposable piece of junk; at least the movie is filled with important ideas which reflect on where we're currently at with this particularly sensitive and incendiary topic.