(2008)

Critic Reviews

82

Metascore

Based on 30 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
As the summer heats up, let Frozen River wash over you; let its bracing drama and the intensity of its acting restore your spirits as well as your faith in American independent film.
100
Sometimes two performances come along that are so perfectly matched that no overt signals are needed to show how the characters feel about each other. That's what happens between Melissa Leo and Misty Upham in Frozen River.
100
There is nothing sentimental or picturesque about the performances or imagery. The word that best describes both is elemental.
91
A tale of ordinary Americans scraping bottom, yet there's a redemption in that. The film asks: If you were this desperate, wouldn't you do the same?
90
This is a debut feature, though you'd never know it from the filmmaker's commandingly confident style, or from the heartbreaking beauty -- heartbreaking, then heartmending -- of Melissa Leo's performance as a poor single mother who's living her whole life on thin ice.
88
A Sundance hit that is both absorbing and bleak, Frozen River is anchored by powerful performances, believable scenarios and excellent writing.
88
Chicago Tribune
Possibly one of the biggest reasons Frozen River stands out among bad-decision movies is that Ray never really tries to justify her actions.
88
There is no shortage of indie movies about economically challenged women. This one is different, in that the women actually do something besides just talk about it.
88
Strikingly authentic, socially conscious crime drama.
88
Does what too many independent American movies only pretend to do: Takes you to an unnoticed corner of our country and shows what it's like to actually live there.
50
If we're going to be honest, we need to look inside and ask ourselves: Do we really want to see a listless movie about a woman whose dream is to move into a double-wide trailer?
40
Has moments of honesty, but more often the barren landscape - both outside and inside - drains the emotions out of the film.

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