7.5/10
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289 user 128 critic

The Ice Storm (1997)

R | | Drama | 26 November 1997 (USA)
In suburban New Canaan, Connecticut, 1973, middle class families experimenting with casual sex and substance abuse find their lives beyond their control.

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(novel),

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 5 wins & 30 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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George Clair
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William Cain ...
Ted Shackley
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Mrs. Gadd
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Storyline

In the weekend after thanksgiving 1973 the Hoods are skidding out of control. Benjamin Hood reels from drink to drink, trying not to think about his trouble at the office. His wife, Elena, is reading self help books and losing patience with her husband's lies. Their son, Paul, home for the holidays, escapes to the city to pursue an alluring rich girl from his prep school. And young, budding nymphomaniac, Wendy Hood roams the neighborhood, innocently exploring liquor cabinets and lingerie drawers of her friends' parents, looking for something new. Then an ice storm hits, the worst in a century. Things get bad... Written by Emory Herbertson <shrikes.fox@worldnet.att.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It was 1973, and the climate was changing. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality and drug use, including scenes involving children, and for language | See all certifications »

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 »
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Details

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Release Date:

26 November 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La tormenta de hielo  »

Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$75,183 (USA) (28 September 1997)

Gross:

$7,837,632 (USA) (8 February 1998)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

To prepare for the film, Ang Lee let the cast members study stacks of magazine cutouts from the early 1970s. See more »

Goofs

There is a six-wheeled G.I. Joe "armored personnel carrier" among the numerous toys in the Carver's rec-room. This plastic toy vehicle was not introduced by Hasbro until 1983, ten years after this film is set. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Train Conductor: Good morning ladies and gentlemen. This train, originating from New York's Grand Central Station, is back in service. Next stop will be New Canaan, Connecticut. New Canaan, Connecticut next stop.
Paul Hood: [narration] In issue 141 of the Fantastic Four, published in November, 1973, Reed Richards had to use his anti-matter weapon on his own son, who Aannihilus has turn into the Human Atom Bomb. It was a typical predicament for the Fantastic Four, because they weren't like other superheroes. ...
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Connections

References The Exorcist (1973) See more »

Soundtracks

Mr. Big
Written by Andy Fraser, Simon Kirke, Paul Kossoff & Paul Rodgers
Used by permission of Blue Mountain Music Ltd.
Performed by Free
Courtesy of A&M Records, Inc. / Island Records Limited
By Arrangement with PolyGram Film & TV Licensing
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User Reviews

 
The Victims of Spoilhood
4 November 2004 | by (Providence, RI) – See all my reviews

Set in upscale, suburban New Canaan, Connecticut in 1973, The Ice Storm (based on a novel by Rick Moody) is a scathing social criticism of the values and ideals of upper-class American society during that time period. With the background for the movie being the Nixon Watergate scandal, the corruption is portrayed as extending all the way into the American Home through a short glimpse into the lives of two families: The Hoods and the Carvers.

Both families have two children (Carvers: two sons, Hoods: one son, one daughter), and appear perfectly normal and supportive at first glance. However, through a series of common experiences, and through the way the families struggle to communicate both within and with one another, it becomes clear there are deeply rooted problems. Director Lee uses the children to exemplify the failures of the parents, and their mistakes reflect heavily and harshly on the adults in their lives. The adults also make their own mistakes, and these are depicted as far worse - for as adults, they should know better. Their struggles in dealing with their children are at times almost comical, and show their lack of proper parenting skills. As a criticism, this structure is flawless, comprehensive, and unrelenting throughout. Except for a few fleeting scenes, the irresponsibility of the adults dominates the screen.

Of course, all these events are building up to a climax of epic proportions. The saying, "a stitch in time saves nine," comes to mind when discussing this movie. Had any of the adults taken the proper steps of good parenting anywhere along the way, the events that unfold would not have occurred. Like the failed parenting of the adults, however, it's too little, too late. Bad parenting, selfishness, lavishness, sexual promiscuity, greed, lack of communication, and foolishness lead these adults to make mistakes within their lives, the lives of their children, and the lives of their friends. And come the closing credits of this incredibly well directed, well acted film, they are the ones left to pick up the pieces.


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