The lure of easy money leads a financially strapped mother (Melissa Leo) to join a Mohawk woman (Misty Upham) in smuggling illegal immigrants from Canada to the U.S.
" A Sundance hit that is both absorbing and bleak, Frozen River is anchored by powerful performances, believable scenarios and excellent writing. "
" All in all, Frozen River is gripping stuff. "
" An impressive first feature by writer/director Courtney Hunt, Frozen River boasts considerable suspense-movie tension and a compelling emotional journey for its foreground characters. "
" An urgent and incomparably moving first feature from Courtney Hunt. "
" Courtney Hunt's Frozen River is the first great film of the fall. It has great actors playing vivid characters in a setting that makes for a clash of cultures. "
" Frozen River does what too many independent American movies only pretend to do: Takes you to an unnoticed corner of our country and shows what it's like to actually live there. "
" Frozen River is one of those rare independent films that knows precisely what it intends, and what the meaning of the story is. "
" Frozen River isn't just a good movie made by a woman; it's a good movie on anyone's terms, one of the year's best. To find hope beneath this ice, in this ugly terrain, is to dream big. "
" Frozen River let me forget I was watching a movie, something that didn't happen often in 2008. "
" Frozen River, a story of abject desperation, feels so real and immediate that it plays almost like a documentary. "
" It moves and it heals, finding hints of redemption in the jagged face of life. "
" It's fair to say that Hunt's first full-length feature, though uneven at times, holds the promise of better things to come. "
" Made with uncommon skill and assurance, the film never succumbs to rank sentimentality, but it manages to get at the nuances of human relationships. "
" Occasionally marred by contrivance and a crude internal logic that doesn't bear close scrutiny, 'Frozen River' works best as a knuckle-gnawing, blue-collar genre thriller. "
" The miracle of filmmaker Courtney Hunt's tense, carefully understated debut is that it is made better by its few flights of fancy. "
" There are moments of poetry on display. "
" This is a debut feature, though you'd never know it from the filmmaker's commandingly confident style, or from the heartbreaking beauty -- heartbreaking, then heartmending -- of Melissa Leo's performance. "
" We quickly sense that the director of this film has unusual perception, and that whatever the story and performances turn out to be, she will make the most of them. "
" What a beautiful and impressive job by first-time writer-director Courtney Hunt. "
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