The Sweet Hereafter

As a critic, we sometimes challenge ourselves with films that have won awards. We do this whether or not we have any fire in the belly over it or a passionate interest. I watched this film because of its huge Metascore of a “90” and the many awards it has won. Though it started slow, I did enjoy this one.

The Sweet Hereafter (1997)
R | 1h 52min | Drama | 21 November 1997 (USA)
A bus crash in a small town brings a lawyer to the town to defend the families, but he discovers that everything is not what it seems.
Director: Atom Egoyan
Writers: Russell Banks (novel), Atom Egoyan (screenplay)
Stars: Ian Holm, Sarah Polley, Caerthan Banks

Director Atom Egoyan is known for “Chloe” and “Devil’s Knot” among many more. He is an accomplished director. He knows how to write and ignite passion in his films. He shines a light on human nature.

There is an age-old topic here of money vs. retribution in court. Ian Holm plays the lawyer that has come to call on this very small snow covered town. It seems the school bus that held every child in the town veered off a cliff and sunk into the frozen lake. Sarah Polley plays one of the few who survived the crash. The film consists of this lawyer trying to get these people to press charges and then get a story together that will win them money. It’s a fun ride but the payoff is just mild. The lawyer learns some towns don’t care about winning lawsuits. There is much to discuss here. I give this film a 7/10

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