Ice Harvest, The

MPAA Rating: R

Entertainment: +2

Content: -4

This very dark comedy makes a big joke of the most holy Christian holiday. Freezing rain has created a sheet of ice over Kansas City on Christmas Eve. Charlie Arglist (John Cusack), a lawyer for the mob, and porn dealer Vic (Billy Bob Thornton) just stole more than $2 million from mob boss Bill Guerrard (Randy Quaid). Nice guy Charlie, apparently having nowhere to go, hangs out in strip joints owned by the mob. Vic hates his wife because shes fat, so he leaves her alone while he spends the evening in an upscale restaurant. Charlie and Vic plan to leave town with the money, but their plans are interrupted by grisly murders, betrayals and Pete (Oliver Platt). Sloppy drunk Pete creates a scene in public, and Charlie agrees to take him home, delaying his planned rendezvous with Vic. Pete, married to Charlies ex-wife, shows nothing but contempt for her in front of his stepchildren and in-laws as he spews out a tirade of curses. The Ice Harvest belongs at the bottom of the barrel, but the trailers and other publicity are promoting it as hilarious.

Disgusting, sleazy and sordid sum up this mess. Strippers perform pole dances for customers, baring their breasts and buttocks as they make lewd movements. At least 100 obscenities and profanities, including 58 f-words, are uttered in nearly every sentence. Perhaps the most offensive dialogue is dying Vics sickening attempt to redeem himself by muttering through the Lords Prayer, interspersed with profanity, after murdering his wife and another man. Betrayals abound with grisly killings close behind. A young police officer is shot in the head, a mob member shoots off part of Charlies foot, and in return has his head blown apart, judging from the blood splattered across the screen. A man is locked in a trunk, then dumped into a frozen river to die. Charlie and Pete spend all of Christmas Eve drinking and somehow are able to remain conscious and drive. This irreverent, offensive movie may draw those who dislike the usual feel-good movies of the holiday season. Any other choice would be better.

Preview Reviewer: Mary Draughon
Focus Features

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: Many (14) times mild (hell 4, damn 1); moderate (b-stard 1); strong (-ss 7, b-tch 1)

Obscene Language: Many (81) times strong (f-word 58, s-word 13, finger gesture 5, d-ck 3, other 2)

Profanity: Many (24) times moderate (MG 3); strong (GD 8, J 9, JC 3, C-sake 1)

Violence: Many times strong (mob violence includes police officer shot in forehead, part of mans foot shot off with bloody stump shown, man forced into trunk and then dumped into frozen river, man shot at point-blank range with head splattered across room and woman; man makes no effort to save partner who has fallen into freezing water)

Sex: None

Nudity: Several times moderate (strippers in club with exposed buttocks and breasts)

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: Several times strong (pole dancers perform lewd movements)

Drugs: Continuous mild (drinking in bars, drinking from flasks while driving); moderate (man drunk throughout, insults family and curses Christmas; drunkenness treated as humorous)

Other: Dying man recites Lord s Prayer interspersed with profanity; betrayals; sordid lifestyle treated humorously; man escapes with money he stole and faces no consequences)

Running Time: 88 minutes
Intended Audience: Adults

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