Critics Consensus

Dark and bleak, the "kick-ass" performances, especially Nolte's "effective" portrayal of an abused soul, is the reason to see this film.



Total Count: 50


Audience Score

User Ratings: 5,570
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Movie Info

Wade is a police officer in the country and his divorce seldom permits him to spend time with his daughter of whom his ex-wife has custody. He is in love with a fantastic woman with whom he lives. Wade wants to have a family, but a strange accident will change his life forever.


Nick Nolte
as Wade Whitehouse
James Coburn
as Glen Whitehouse
Sissy Spacek
as Margie Fogg
Willem Dafoe
as Rolfe Whitehouse
Jim True-Frost
as Jack Hewitt
Marian Seldes
as Alma Pittman
Sean McCann
as Evan Twombley
Wayne Robson
as Nick Wickham
Steve Adams
as Mel Gordon
Holmes Osborne
as Gordon LaRiviere
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Critic Reviews for Affliction

All Critics (50) | Top Critics (10) | Fresh (44) | Rotten (6)

Audience Reviews for Affliction

  • Jul 25, 2019
    Paul Schrader cements his filmmaking with this film and creates one of the best films of 1997. I have owned this film for quite some time and regrettably never gambled the opportunity to watch it. Nolte and Coburn are incredible to watch and this slow burning film is tough to watch. This is indie cinema at its greatest and I'm shocked this didn't connect with the circuit it was designed for. Relentlessly dark and harrowing, this is one trip in darkness you don't want to miss. I miss these films and I'm happy to push this onto anyone who is interested in seeing forgotten gems. 25/07/2019
    Brendan N Super Reviewer
  • May 18, 2012
    What a great movie featuring some simply fabulous performances from Nick Nolte and James Coburn. Nick Nolte does about a great a job of anyone at playing someone who's always constantly on the edge of totally losing it, turning into the man his father is/was. The movie also has a strong story about Wade's relationship with his father and how Wade, in turn, sort of detaches himself from everyone around him due to harming them like his father did as he was growing up and how he sort of tries to redeem himself and all his faults by solving a murder case that simply wasn't there. It's a story that makes sense and it never insults your intelligence in any way. While I think a lot of the father/son issues the movie touches on are a bit familiar, in that it's not something you haven't seen before not that it reminds ME of my childhood, but Nick Nolte and James Coburn do such a great job in their roles it's really not a big issue. And the ending is fantastic, it took what had been a very good movie and made it great. It's definitely a very powerful ending that really does add a lot to the overall package and how it tied everything up. Granted the ending isn't exactly happy but that doesn't make it any less great. Anyway this is a great movie with a great story and some outstanding performances from Nick Nolte and James Coburn.
    Jesse O Super Reviewer
  • Mar 12, 2012
    The plot sounded interesting and it did begin rightly so. However, it failed to maintain that level of interest as it congresses. The story is messed up & lacks thrill. If only critical acclaims could make up for a disappointing experience!!! On the greener side, it's much better than some recent experiences. Good if it works for you. Give it a go.
    familiar s Super Reviewer
  • Oct 18, 2011
    Paul Schrader has finally hit a nerve with "Affliction", one of the most true-to-life films I have ever seen. It reaches out to those who've had rocky relationships with their fathers and offers them a helping hand. Not one other person could've played the role of Wade Whitehouse as well as Nick Nolte does. He brings a harshness to this character that honestly cannot be defined by words.
    Stephen E Super Reviewer

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