It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.
"Eleni" is based on the true story of a New York Times reporter who went searching for his past in Greece. The reporter's name is Nicholas Gage.
As a very young boy, he is sent to America to join relatives at the end of World War II. He has a sharp memory of his mother promising to join him as soon as possible. But his mother never arrives, and word finally comes that she has been killed - shot by a firing squad in the confused days of the Greek civil war.
As the movie opens, years have passed, but the agony of that loss has not faded for Nick Gage. He feels he cannot rest until he finds the answers to the questions that haunt him: Why was his mother killed? Who killed her? He arranges to be sent to Greece on assignment for his newspaper, and his wife, who has had to live with his agony, realizes how special this trip is when she discovers him packing a gun.
"Eleni" tells Gage's story in the present day, and then uses flashbacks to tell his mother's story. The adult Nick is played by John Malkovich as an introspective, wryly intelligent man who harbors deep hurts and angers.