The Sweet Hereafter | Denver Film Society | Atom Egoyan | Canada

The Sweet Hereafter

Atom Egoyan

Drama, Social Issues

EnglishCanada1997112 min


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This heartbreaking meditation on the aftermath of loss and the nature of healing took the Grand Prix at Cannes and garnered two Oscar nominations upon its release in 1997.

Faithfully adapting a 1991 novel for the screen with its author, Russell Banks, director Atom Egoyan cross-cuts through three different time periods to tell the story of a small Canadian mountain town in collective shock over a recent school-bus crash that killed many local children. Enter Mitchell Stephens (Sir Ian Holm), a big-city attorney who brings with him promises of a class-action lawsuit against the bus manufacturer. Stephens is not your stock ambulance chaser, however. As a father anguishing over his own daughter's losing battle with drugs, he quietly shares the pain of the families desperately trying to come to terms with the tragedy—some of whom, like the Burnells and their wheelchair-bound daughter Nicole (Sarah Polley), have more than one cross to bear.

Producer: Atom Egoyan, Camelia Frieberg | Editor: Susan Shipton | Cinematographer: Paul Sarossy | Screenwriter: Atom Egoyan
Cast: Ian Holm, Caerthan Banks, Sarah Polley, Tom McCamus, Gabrielle Rose, Alberta Watson