6.4/10
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2 user 26 critic

On the Ice (2011)

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In Barrow, Alaska, teenagers Qalli and Aivaaq find their bond tested when a seal-hunting trip goes wrong, resulting in the death of their friend.
6 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Josiah Patkotak ...
Qalli
Frank Qutuq Irelan ...
Aivaaq
Teddy Kyle Smith ...
Egasak
Adamina Kerr ...
Michelle
Sierra Jade Sampson ...
Uvlu
John Miller ...
James
Rosabelle Kunnanna Rexford ...
Aaka
Veron Kanayurak ...
Roscoe
Billyjens Hopson ...
Jens
Jay Rapoza ...
Max
Allison Warden ...
Sigvaun
Denae Brower ...
Darlene
Tara Sweeney ...
Dora
Tasha Taaqpak Panigeo ...
Charlene
Jerica Aamodt ...
Ellie
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Storyline

In the isolated, frozen town of Barrow, Alaska, Iñupiaq teenagers Qalli and Aivaaq have grown up like brothers in a tight-knit community defined as much by ancient traditions as by hip-hop and snowmobiles. Early one morning, on a seal hunt with their friend James, a tussle turns violent, and James is killed. Panic stricken, terrified, and with no one to blame but themselves, Qalli and Aivaaq lie and declare the death a tragic accident. As Barrow roils with grief and his protective father becomes suspicious, Qalli stumbles through guilt-filled days, wrestling with his part in the death. For the first time in his life, he's treading alone on existential ice. Written by Anonymous

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Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, some drug content and violence

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

14 December 2011 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Na lodzie  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$8,257 (USA) (24 February 2012)

Gross:

$70,526 (USA) (27 April 2012)
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Company Credits

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Did You Know?

Quotes

Aaka: My arthritis is acting up. Hand me my medicine over there.
Qalli: Now don't take too much.
Aaka: Ah, you're not the doctor.
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User Reviews

The Best Film to show Alaska how it actually is.
20 February 2012 | by (Fairbanks, AK) – See all my reviews

This film is a triumph of Alaskan narrative filmmaking. Showing Alaskan Natives as they really live, including old traditions, dance, and hunting, next to cell phones, hip hop, and drugs. It doesn't get tied up on trying to show the beauty of Alaska, and neither the exoticness of it's peoples. Instead, it uses them to further it's themes and plot. Incredibly sensitive, honest, and entertaining.

While it's easy to say this is a movie about the evils of drugs, or the ability of the arctic landscape to drive one to insanity, the film gracefully dodges such easy targets and focuses on a story about a young man trying to grow up and a community dealing with a tragedy, which are much more open ended, accessible ideas. This allows those without any knowledge of Native Alaskans, or Alaska even, to become entranced by the story.

Don't let the non-pro cast turn you away, either. It is all native persons (no Asians pretending to native American), and the direction makes sure they're up to snuff to all other films by mature filmmakers.


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