Snow Angels - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Snow Angels Reviews

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February 6, 2013
Really packs a punch thanks to Rockwell's performance, a solid cast - slow moving film but so much going on. Highly recommend.
Critique Threatt
Super Reviewer
December 23, 2012
This is a great film by David Gordon Green. I was taken with the characters and their way of life and their problems. The film has a real sense of blue collar life that wouldn't comprehend with big studios. Kate Beckinsale and Sam Rockwell put in fine performances in "Snow Angels". I also admired the slowly developed romantic connection between Michael Angarano and Olivia Thirlby characters. It's how real life high school couples slowly become intimately connected and it works. David Gordon Green has the heart and the romantic touch like a fine painter.

The story is about a high school band is practicing for the last football game, when they hear gunshots. The picture abruptly flashes back to a few weeks before, to an Asian restaurant where a high school boy named Arthur (Michael Angarano) buses tables, and his ex-babysitter, Annie (Kate Beckinsale), and her best friend, Barb (Amy Sedaris), are waitresses. Arthur, who's a bit of a misfit, has a troubled home life caused by his constantly clashing parents, both of whom often forget about him. Annie's life isn't faring much better: she's now a single mother with an ill mother, separated from her husband, Glenn (Sam Rockwell), who's on the wagon and becoming a born-again Christian in order to prove that he is responsible enough to spend time with their young daughter, Tara (Gracie Hudson). Depressed and lonely, Annie is having an affair with Barb's husband, Nate (Nicky Katt), which eventually serves to only make her unhappier, as she feels great guilt over betraying her best friend. Desperate to prove himself and still harboring feelings for his estranged wife (whom he suspects is seeing someone), Glenn gets a new job and spends as much time as possible with Tara. Meanwhile, Arthur finds himself growing close to Lila (Olivia Thirlby), a new student at the high school who has a knack for photography. The film focuses heavily on how people's lives can cross in a small town, especially when Tara wanders out of the house and goes missing while Annie, having just lost her best friend over the affair, is sleeping. The whole town spends hours desperately searching for Tara, before Arthur finds her body while smoking pot with his friend. To Annie's horror, Tara fell into the lake while playing and drowned when the water froze over.

So in a way it feels like a Robert Altman picture with characters crossing lives in a small town. If you dislike watching character driven films then "Snow Angels" is not for you but if you are the opposite, you will instantly be taken with the characters and notice a fine filmmaker painstakingly crafting a delicate film at the height of his powers.
November 5, 2012
David Gordon Green needs to make more films like these and not films like "The Sitter. Sam Rockwell's performance was oscar worthy and so was David's script and direction. One of the best films I have ever seen.
September 30, 2012
Sam Rockwell is brilliant. A heartbreaking and underrated film. If you can find a copy, watch it.
hunterjt13
Super Reviewer
September 28, 2012
Stories about teenage love and a marriage that has all but disintegrated are interconnected in this drama.
Strong performances by Kate Beckinsale and Sam Rockwell highlight this indie drama, but the film's weakness is its inability to either reach the Altman Standard for interconnecting stories or link the stories with a common theme. The best that I can manage for a common theme is weak: I think the film suggests that relationships inevitably decay despite the grand optimism with which we enter them, a claim evidenced by the parallels between Annie and Glenn's marriage and their younger counterparts. But I feel like I'm doing more work than the film is in order to tease some semblance of sense.
Overall, this effort represents the dangers of trying to do too much and fit a whole novel into a medium that can't carry all the weight.
½ September 18, 2012
Green's direction has a weird rhythm that I couldn't really get jive to the whole time. There's no tension, and the pivotal event feels disconnected and inevitable. Rockwell gives a good performance, but it feels like it's for the wrong character; he's not threatening, at all. And also the kids' courtship is really cute but it feels arbitrary next to the main plot. I found myself thinking all these things probably worked much better in the novel, which, hey, not surprising. It wasn't bad though.
½ August 29, 2012
Very fine acting (Espicially the worthwhile Sam Rockwell) but this film fell a little flat from being too melodramatic though it did have some great emotional exploration to it.
½ August 27, 2012
The first half of this movie was engaging and well-plotted. Then the second half made it feel a bit like wasted energy. This movie was incredibly sad and heartwrenching, shaking me to the core, and the performances were so real and bone-chillingly good, but it was too emotionally draining for me.
½ August 26, 2012
Seemingly dull but it can keep you hooked until the end.

The characters are very realistically developed that one cannot help but get reeled into their tornado of love, relationship, marriage and death.

Wonderful performance delivered by the cast, especially Rockwell and Beckinsale.
½ August 26, 2012
Seemingly dull but it can keep you hooked until the end.

The characters are very realistically developed that one cannot help but get reeled into their tornado of love, relationship, marriage and death.

Wonderful performance delivered by the cast, especially Rockwell and Beckinsale.
½ August 22, 2012
Thursday, August 16, 2012

(2006) Snow Angels
DRAMA

Adapted from a novel by Stewart O'Nan Director David Gordon Green who also provided the screenplay starts off with a snowy climate on a suburban town, a marching band is seen playing for a school football team with several bystanders/ spectators on the bleachers until shots were heard from afar and the film dwells one week before that happened. Starring Kate Beckinsale as the single mother and Sam Rockwell as her ex with Amy Sedaris as the co-worker.

What this film does succeed in doing is that it at times make us examine our own lives and the movie is involving in that aspect of it and that is only on the first three fourths of it and quite well done. However, after this whatever unfortunate incident happened, the response regarding the father is unrealistic.

3 out of 4
½ August 21, 2012
This movie was good til the end when the douche-bag gets away with murdering his ex-wife. Don't watch this movie, even though Kate Beckinsale is in it the end is too realistic in terms of the kind of crapola that actually happens and the selfish egos who insist on killing others rather then just killing themselves first. Depressing and irritating film.
½ August 6, 2012
A deeply moving and troubling movie. One of the most beautifully shot movies that really didn't have the color or pizazz of some of the cinematography winners in the past, but had the feel of Let the Right One In, a Swedish vampire movie from 2008. The snow enhanced the story, which is, as I have come to find most beautiful movies to be, very sad. Throughout the movie, I felt, as I'm sure others who will or have seen this movie, for certain aspects of each character. The film interacts the emotions of a full lifetime into a two hour span, and in the end, the only thing that seemed to work as I wanted, was the one I was pulling for the most. Everything else went, as the Britons might say, to bullocks. This was by far the best acting role I've seen Kate Beckinsale in, and I've seen a lot of them, and Sam Rockwell added to his more than illustrious career. The rest of the cast, including Amy Sedaris (Jerri Blank from Strangers With Candy) adapted the script phenomenally to the screen. My only gripe with the movie was bullocks part, the short stint of chaos, that spins the ending for a bit, before the film concludes.
July 4, 2012
This is, to me, the 'American Beauty' of the decade. Two families in a small town who live seemingly normal lives

This film is well-written, beautifully shot, and the performances are spectacular.

Sam Rockwell and Kate Beckinsale are flawless, making me hate them both, but love them both at the same time.

Olivia Thirlby (Juno) and Michael Angarano (Will & Grace) prove that they are destined for great things.

I know that this may be blasphemy to you indie kids, but in my opinion, Olivia's performance in this was better than Ellen Page's in Juno.

This is the first time I've ever seen Amy Sedaris in a non-comedic role and it makes me wish she'd do this more often.

Given the fact that most of what I've typed is about acting, it's obvious that this is a very character-driven film.

It isn't very funny. In fact, it becomes increasingly dark, however it also gives out glimmers of hope.

This movie is rather high on my list.
½ June 18, 2012
David Gordon Green came out with Pineapple Express and it was okay but not the greatest. Then I watched this and I discovered he should stick to writing dramas. Stoner comedies are out. Drama are in. Especially for david gordon green.
June 12, 2012
This one's terrific.
½ May 25, 2012
I was so depressed after seeing this movie but it's life and I'm so glad I saw it. Sometimes is just what you need (a clear reality check and life). Kate Beckinsale and Sam Rockwell give AMAZING performances. The young story was great too. I'm so glad David Gordon Green made this movie as realistic as possible. I'm sooo tired of hollywood happy endings and this is refreshing cause life isn't easy and some of us live in a bubble.
½ May 22, 2012
A beautiful crystalline structure of misery that, by its end, is chipped away to nearly nothing. Angarano and Thirlby, as two teenagers in love, can just barely escape this oppressive, wearying sadness, and they even add its few moments of comedy. But none of the other characters seem anywhere near able to be saved, much less worth saving.

Green is a wonderful filmmaker, and Rockwell and Beckinsale are wonderful actors -- but besides the two kids, there isn't much here to make the pain worth it.
May 9, 2012
David Gordon Green's Snow Angels is a film that amalgamates the structure and familial insecurity of Ang Lee's The Ice Storm and the post-tragedy management of Atom Egoyan's The Sweet Hereafter. The result, still, is only a portioned makeup of the picture's totality. The rest is any combination of bleak, startling, powerful, and sweet; and Green treats his audience no more kindly than his film treats its characters. Angels, a screen adaptation of Stewart O'Nan's acclaimed '94 novel, is ultimately an assertive melodrama kindled into a blistering tale of calamity, the product of an uncompromising director bent on affecting hardened America. And he does so, deeply and gravely.

Arthur (Michael Angarano) is a high school student and member of the school's marching band. When he's not at band practice or in class, he's bussing tables at a local Chinese restaurant, practicing an instrument in the school auditorium until the waning hours of the night, or sharing awkward moments with the new girl in school, Lila (Olivia Thirlby). To shorten the allegory, Arthur doesn't like home. And he's not wrong, either: his parents are going through a nasty separation and he's enduring the burden. But that's not all. Meanwhile, Annie (Kate Beckinsale), whom Arthur works with and used to be babysat by, is suffering relationship problems of her own -- she refuses to see her husband, Glenn (Sam Rockwell), who has recently survived alcoholism and a suicide attempt, and doesn't like the idea of him spending time with their young daughter. To make matters worse, and eventually set in motion the dire events to follow, Annie is "seeing" her best friend Barb's (Amy Sedaris) husband -- and Glenn finds out.

Indeed, Angels meets terrible circumstances. In fact, what occurs is more severe than that which "terrible" implies. But, as he did for George Washington and Undertow, Green exemplifies the beauty to come of such dreadful lives (albeit, the aforementioned works don't compare to this feature in terms of weight), through both the physical landscape (shot impeccably by Tim Orr, again) and the magical, stabilizing chemistry of Arthur and Lila. Honestly, the most remarkable, resonant aspect of this movie is the companionship Arthur and Lila build -- remarkable because, even after everyone around him crumbles due to his or her relationship, Arthur is sensitive to and hopeful of the friendship he and Lila find together; and resonant because David Gordon Green nails teen love as flawlessly as any film since Say Anything (Green's All the Real Girls supremely captures the heart of young-adult relationships).

Snow Angels embraces the worst of life's truths and some pretty bad people too (you'll be surprised to find that Annie is the worst of the bunch), though it does so shapely and with searing drama in mind. It's certainly tragic, maybe even depressing, but it stands for hope, renewal, and constancy -- each represented by Arthur and Lila's bond, Glenn's testing faith, and Barb's unyielding loyalty to Annie, respectively -- making the mercy and tenderness with which it is shot and performed the part that viewers are finally left with. It's fair to call Snow Angels a great film (it's no masterpiece). I think it's currently one of the year's ten best.
April 27, 2012
Good acting, bad movie. I wish I had not watched it, so depressing and pointless like Precious.
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