7.5/10
49,445
289 user 128 critic

The Ice Storm (1997)

R | | Drama | 26 November 1997 (USA)
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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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Writers:

(based upon the novel by), (screenplay by)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 5 wins & 31 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Ben Hood
... Elena Hood
... Janey Carver
... George Clair
... Paul Hood
... Wendy Hood
... Mikey Carver
... Sandy Carver
... Francis Davenport
... Jim Carver
... Dorothy Franklin
William Cain ... Ted Shackley
... Philip Edwards
... Mrs. Gadd
... Libbets Casey
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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:

The American Dream was over. But the hangover was just beginning. 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 »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Fox Searchlight Pictures

Country:

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Release Date:

26 November 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La tormenta de hielo  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$75,183, 28 September 1997, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$7,837,632, 8 February 1998
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the novel The Ice Storm, Rick Moody writes "And sometimes Paul himself was Ben Grimm, and sometimes he was Peter Parker, a.k.a. the Spider-Man" Coincidentally, Tobey Maguire plays both Paul and Peter Parker in the film versions. See more »

Goofs

In the scene where Wendy Hood has a brief encounter in the middle of the crosswalk with Sandy Carver (at the 19:20 mark), the street corner's curb in the background (behind Sandy) is wheelchair accessible. Such ramps did not exist in 1973. 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

Referenced in Bob's Burgers: Nice-Capades (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Montego Bay
Written by Jeff Barry & Bobby Bloom
Used by permission of EMI Unart Catalog Inc (BMI)
Performed by Bobby Bloom
Courtesy of Polydor Records
By Arrangement with PolyGram Film & TV Licensing
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User Reviews

 
Powerful, Thought-Provoking and Eye-Opening
21 November 2007 | by See all my reviews

'The Ice Storm' is an incredibly bleak and dark film set in the 70s about two connected families during the holiday break of Thanksgiving. The first family consists of Ben (Kevin Kline) and Elena (Joan Allen), and their two kids -- 16-year-old Paul (Tobey Maguire) just home from boarding school, and 14-year-old Wendy (Christina Ricci) a wannabe anti-war/anti-Nixon elitist who is coming to terms with her own sexuality. The second family consists of Janey (Sigourney Weaver) whom Ben is having an affair with, her husband Jim (Jamey Sheridan), and their two boys -- the neurotic intro-vert Mikey (Elijah Wood) and his younger shy pyro-maniac brother Sandy (AdamN Hann Byrd). The film takes place during Thanksgiving day and the day after in the lives of these people -- including Ben and Elena's marriage being put to the test at a swinger's party with Janey and Jim, Paul's love conquest in New York City with a girl from boarding school named Libbets (Katie Holmes), and Wendy's sexual misadventures with Mikey and Sandy both.

'The Ice Storm' is an incredibly powerful and relevant ensemble piece about the complexity of family and relationships both sexual and non-sexual. Ang Lee once again proves he is a director of great skill and exquisite understanding of human emotions, and James Schamus provides a harrowing and painfully realistic screenplay. Kevin Kline delivers yet another near-flawless dramatic performance, while Sigourney Weaver is great in her interesting yet limited role. The children of the ensemble cast (Maguire, Byrd, Wood, Ricci, Holmes, Krumholtz) are all excellent, especially Christina Ricci who owns her role. However, the real scene-stealer in my eyes is the marvelous Joan Allen who plays her role with such intensity and elegance that I'm shocked she didn't receive a Best Actress Oscar Nomination.

In conclusion, 'The Ice Storm' is a powerful little movie that's interesting yet not exciting. It isn't groundbreaking by any standards, but it's incredibly well-made. 'The Ice Storm' was totally ignored at the '98 Oscar Ceremony, but that comes to no enormous surprise. It was competing in the same year 'L.A. Confidential', 'Boogie Nights', 'Amistad', 'The Sweet Hereafter', 'As Good as It Gets' and the dreadfully overrated 'Titanic' were. A small little character study like 'The Ice Storm' didn't stand a chance. If you can appreciate a movie like this, I highly recommend this oldie I just got around to seeing. Grade: A-


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