The Sweet Hereafter
The Sweet Hereafter (1997)

Mystical, elliptical and confoundingly beautiful film about a town that loses its children and maybe its soul.

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Genre: Drama
Release Date: November 20, 1997
DVD Release Date: May 26, 1998
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Critic Score: 100% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Director Atom Egoyan examines tragedy and its aftermath with intelligence and empathy.

Jeff Strickler
Minneapolis Star Tribune

A delicate and touching story.

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John Hartl

As in Egoyan's Exotica and The Adjuster, past and present are intricately fused by the crisp editing, the mournful shadings of Mychael Danna's score and Paul Sarossy's austere wide-screen cinematography

Jason Bailey

That's the true power of Egoyan's film - how in shuffling the chronological deck, we see what once was in this town, both in its light and its darkness, and how none of it will ever be the same, no matter what Mitchell Stevens says.

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Brendan Kelly

Canadian writer-director Atom Egoyan's most ambitious work to date, The Sweet Hereafter is a rich, complex meditation on the impact of a terrible tragedy on a small town.

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Janet Maslin
New York Times

In a season of expertly adapted contemporary fiction (like "L.A. Confidential" and "The Ice Storm"), this fusion of Banks's and Egoyan's sensibilities stands as a particularly inspired mix.

Brandon Judell
Huffington Post

Egoyan's most successful film to date.

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Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times

Though this is Egoyan's first adaptation, The Sweet Hereafter could serve as a model for how to do it right.

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Peter Brunette

a new moral urgency seems to invigorate this film

Katherine Monk

A film that touches on the essence of love by throwing us into the abyss of loss, The Sweet Hereafter marks the apex of the English-Canadian film tradition as it navigates the empty space left in the wake of tragedy with a gentle, but unsentimental eye.

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More reviews for The Sweet Hereafter

Flixster Audience Score: 86% Flixster User Reviews
Drew Smith
A smart moral and sociological exploration, much more subtle than I've come to expect from Atom Egoyan, but I suppose I wanted's pretty… More
Reid Volk
A bittersweet little piece of film about a town consumed by the death of many of the citizen's children in a school bus accident. Egoyan's movie is… More
Kevin M. Williams
Quiet and solemn this work by Atom Egoyan is so beautiful and moving that I found myself gasping as the roots of a small town are ripped asunder by an… More
familiar stranger
This was an unusual fare, but fortunately a pleasant one. The chemistry of different relationships is displayed excellently herein. The length of the movie is… More
Jennifer Xu
The Sweet Hereafter is exquisite. Innocent, mysterious, prescient, nervy, calm - I love the whole concept of examining a town in the aftershocks of a tragedy;… More
Dan Schultz
A brave and unflinching look at guilt, loss, innocence, and grief. Nearly a perfect film, thanks in large part to Ian Holm's restrained but still powerful… More