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The Ice Storm (1997)

R | | Drama | 26 November 1997 (USA)
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2:30 | Trailer

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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.

Director:

Ang Lee

Writers:

Rick Moody (based upon the novel by), James Schamus (screenplay by)
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Popularity
4,971 ( 745)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 5 wins & 31 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kevin Kline ... Ben Hood
Joan Allen ... Elena Hood
Sigourney Weaver ... Janey Carver
Henry Czerny ... George Clair
Tobey Maguire ... Paul Hood
Christina Ricci ... Wendy Hood
Elijah Wood ... Mikey Carver
Adam Hann-Byrd ... Sandy Carver
David Krumholtz ... Francis Davenport
Jamey Sheridan ... Jim Carver
Kate Burton ... Dorothy Franklin
William Cain William Cain ... Ted Shackley
Michael Cumpsty ... Philip Edwards
Maia Danziger ... Mrs. Gadd
Katie Holmes ... 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 the 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:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Fox Searchlight Pictures

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 November 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La tormenta de hielo See more »

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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

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Gene Siskel selected this as the best film of 1997. See more »

Goofs

Downed power lines do not flail about like unattended fire hoses. 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

Features M*A*S*H (1972) See more »

Soundtracks

I Can't Read
Written by David Bowie and Reeves Gabrels
Used by permission of Jones Music America (ASCAP)
Administered by RZO Music
Performed by David Bowie
Courtesy of Jones Music
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User Reviews

 
The Victims of Spoilhood
4 November 2004 | by thegouch23See 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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