The Ice Storm

The Ice Storm Image
Metascore
72

Generally favorable reviews - based on 23 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.9

Universal acclaim- based on 54 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: It's November 1973 in New Canaan, Connecticut. Watergate has caught up with Richard Nixon. The Beatles are recording solo albums. Wife-swapping has come to the suburbs. And, the Hood family is skidding out of control. (Fox Searchlight)

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 23
  2. Negative: 1 out of 23
  1. 100
    What we sense after the film is that the natural sources of pleasure have been replaced with higher-octane substitutes, which have burnt out the ability to feel joy.
  2. 100
    This emotional climax of the film, with its warring glints of despair and hope, typifies the stunning achievement of The Ice Storm and confirms Lee as a director of the first rank.
  3. Elegant and deeply disquieting drama.
  4. Never becomes the thoroughly satisfying psychological drama that it promises to be. There's also a problem with the central metaphor of ice -- a literary device that turns repetitive and obvious.
  5. Reviewed by: David Edelstein
    70
    Lee views these mortal fools with a sorrowful detachment. He's a sort of clinical humanist, editorializing only by what he leaves out. The downside of this method is its impersonality, which limits our involvement. The upside is its lack of cheap sentiment, and its clarity.
  6. Washington Post
    Reviewed by: Rita Kempley
    70
    The decade has been fondly spoofed in capers like "The Brady Bunch," but Lee's film takes a much more searing, if initially hilarious look at the sexual revolution's migration to a New England suburb and the community's subsequent meltdown. [17 October 1997, p.D6]
  7. Washington Post
    Reviewed by: Desson Thomson
    30
    Unfortunately, the drama operates on a see-through, easily shatterable metaphor: the frigidity of the WASP soul. [17 October 1997, p.N32]

See all 23 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 6
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 6
  3. Negative: 1 out of 6
  1. BryanH.
    Feb 4, 2007
    10
    By far the best film ever, not to have been nominated for best film. It was Kevin Kline's best work to date and Ang Lee established By far the best film ever, not to have been nominated for best film. It was Kevin Kline's best work to date and Ang Lee established himself as the most sensitive director alive. The entire cast was flawless. The cinematography and soundtrack left me yearning for more, though the catharsis brought to bear was complete! It captures a glimpse of the disco era (minus the disco) that you will never see again. The warmth of its meaning made up for the sometimes cold Connecticut bourgeoisie. Despite it's icy backdrop, it heats the screen with a humanity and reality I have rarely seen on or off the screen. Collapse
  2. LeonardoF
    Mar 6, 2006
    10
    Absolutely brilliant.
  3. S.Gold
    Dec 6, 2005
    9
    Can't name one bad thing about this film.
  4. BobD.
    Apr 9, 2007
    0
    The most depressing, pointless movie I have ever seen. Pure crap. I must say, the acting is fairly good, but at the end I wanted to stick my The most depressing, pointless movie I have ever seen. Pure crap. I must say, the acting is fairly good, but at the end I wanted to stick my head in an oven. One of the hallmarks of good dramas is that there is conflict and also resolution...there is plenty of conflict but not one good, happy, or decent thing happens. This was a movie written and directed for critics, typical Hollywood elitism. It was so awful I am shocked that it didn't win an Oscar! Expand

See all 6 User Reviews

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