7.7/10
27,518
198 user 122 critic

The Sweet Hereafter (1997)

R | | Drama | 21 November 1997 (USA)
A bus crash in a small town brings a lawyer to the town to defend the families, but he discovers that everything is not what it seems.

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Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 33 wins & 52 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Caerthan Banks ...
...
Tom McCamus ...
...
...
Risa
...
Wendell
...
Allison
Kirsten Kieferle ...
Stewardess
...
Wanda
Earl Pastko ...
Hartley
...
Bear
David Hemblen ...
Abbott
...
Sarah Rosen Fruitman ...
Jessica
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Storyline

A small community is torn apart by a tragic accident which kills most of the town's children. A lawyer visits the victims' parents in order to profit from the tragedy by stirring up the their anger and launching a class action suit against anyone they can blame. The community is paralyzed by its anger and cannot let go. All but one young girl, left in a wheelchair after the accident, who finds the courage to lead the way toward healing. Written by Matthew Tichenor <mticheno@direct.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Sometimes courage comes from the most surprising places. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

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Release Date:

21 November 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El dulce porvenir  »

Box Office

Budget:

CAD 5,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$31,149 (USA) (10 October 1997)

Gross:

$4,306,697 (USA) (3 April 1998)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Author Russell Banks went on record saying that he thought the film was an improvement over his novel. See more »

Goofs

When Stephens visits the Ottos, and Mr. Otto offers him some tea, we hear a teakettle whistling but the one we see on the cooker is not the whistling type. See more »

Quotes

Billy Ansell: Mitchell Stephens, Esquire. Tell me, would you be likely to sue me if I was to beat you right now? I mean, beat you so bad you piss blood and couldn't walk for a month. Because that's what I'm about to do.
Mitchell Stephens: No, Mr. Ansel. I wouldn't sue you.
Billy Ansell: You leave us alone, Stephens. You leave the people of this town alone.
See more »

Connections

Featured in In the Shadow of Hollywood (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

The Sweet Hereafter
Music by Mychael Danna and Sarah Polley
Lyrics by Robert Browning
Performed by The Sam Dent Band
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User Reviews

 
One of the great ones, but not for all tastes
16 September 2004 | by (New York, NY) – See all my reviews

"The Sweet Hereafter" was arguably the best film of the 1990s and is one of my twenty favorite movies of all time. Everything comes together perfectly: fine characterization and acting (especially by Ian Holm), beautiful photography, and a hypnotic musical score featuring Armenian folk instruments. The mood is deeply elegiac but never maudlin or weepy. There's not a false note in the movie.

But don't worry; I'm not going to start screaming, "If you don't like this movie, you just don't understand it! Go back to your Hollywood pablum, you cretinous moron!" That's a stupid argument in any case, and especially so here. There are going to be some people -- including a few art-house fans -- who will find this movie slow and tedious. For me and many others, however, the film is a masterpiece.

10/10


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