Metascore
90

Universal acclaim - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 23
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 23
  3. Negative: 0 out of 23
  1. 100
    This is one of the best films of the year, an unflinching lament for the human condition.
  2. 100
    This is truly a great film -- easily one of 1997's best.
  3. Leaves you shaken and ecstatic at the same time, transported by the vision of a major film artist.
  4. This poetic and compassionate drama by Canadian filmmaker Atom Egoyan combines the intricate structure of his earlier movies with an emotional power that raises his remarkable career to a whole new level.
  5. Egoyan understands how potent a deliberate pace can be, how effective it is in making already powerful material strong enough to tear at your heart.
  6. I can think of no other movie that has dared to analyze grief and its aftermath with such naked honesty and precision.
  7. Masterpiece is the right word for The Sweet Hereafter. It is extraordinary: a poem of familial pain, a song of broken embraces. [25 December 1997, Tempo, p.1]
  8. 90
    The movie has a crispness about it, an unwillingness to succumb to sentimentality.
  9. 100
    It's all presented in a detached style that's ultimately much more moving and truthful than any heartstring-slashing weeper. This may be Egoyan's best work yet, and it's surely one of the best films of the year.
  10. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    88
    A little movie almost perfectly realized.
  11. Reviewed by: Richard Schickel
    90
    A solemn, subtly structured, beautifully acted and ultimately hypnotic movie.
  12. Any film that provides Ian Holm with a large role is off to a good start. The Sweet Hereafter gets off to that start and keeps going. [Dec 8, 1997]
  13. Egoyan's voice is so clear and loving, his vision so forgiving and his film so intelligent that you come away refreshed.
User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 38 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 16
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 16
  3. Negative: 2 out of 16
  1. Sep 9, 2011
    9
    The value of human life and feelings are visualized in a picturesque manner after 'SCHINDLER'S LIST'. It remembers everyone about the central axis of our living community, it's nothing but the one to one help. Atom Egoyan simply says, there is no compensation for real love and affection towards the loved ones in this human ecosystem. ' THE SWEET HEREAFTER ' leaves it's trace as a best man-made art of its decade. Full Review »
  2. Dec 30, 2013
    10
    Emotionally shattering, it's an amazing meditation on feeling, guilt, blame, and the human condition. Not being able to blame a tragedy on something, something certain, something definite, is what drives us to madness and sadness. Full Review »