"Sacrifice Triumphs Over Evil"
What You Need To Know:
THE ICE ROAD is action packed, with a tremendous jeopardy. In fact, the deadly threats to the mission never stop. Liam Neeson excels in another role that fits him like a glove. The rest of the cast is really good, especially Marcus Thomas, who plays Neeson’s brother. THE ICE ROAD has a strong moral, redemptive worldview stressing compassion, sacrifice and courage. However, it’s marred by at least 46 obscenities and profanities. So, MOVIEGUIDE® advises extreme caution.
THE ICE ROAD is an adventure thriller streaming on Netflix about three truck drivers and a mechanic who must travel across a melting ice road to deliver heavy equipment to save the lives of 26 miners trapped in a cave in Canada, but the real threat turns out to be one they never saw coming. Starring Liam Neeson, THE ICE ROAD is action packed, with a tremendous amount of exciting jeopardy, but the movie’s positive values of compassion and sacrifice are marred by more than 45 obscenities and profanities.
The movie opens at a remote diamond mine in Northern Canada. A company inspector arrives and learns that the miners were ordered to shut off the mine’s methane detectors, because the onsite mine managers felt the threat was too low. A sudden methane explosion traps 26 of the minors underground, with only 30 hours to breathe.
Cut to Liam Neeson’s character, a long-haul trucker and former ice road trucker named Mike McCann, getting fired from another job for getting into a fight with some other workers who were picking on his brother, Gurty (played by Marcus Thomas). An Iraq War veteran and top-notch mechanic, Gurty, suffers from aphasia, a disorder caused by a brain injury that damages a person’s verbal abilities.
Back at the mine, the mining company hires an American ice road company headed by Jim Goldenrod (played by Laurence Fishburne), to recruit a team of ice road truckers to bring some heavy drilling equipment to clear out the methane and rescue the 26 miners before they suffocate to death. The truckers will be able to split $200,000. The job is extremely dangerous, however, because the time of the year is well into April and the ice roads to the mine are starting to melt.
Jim hires Mike and his brother, Gurty, and a tough female Cree Indian driver named Tantoo (played by Amber Midthunder), to drive a second and third truck to the mine. Their trucks and Jim’s all carry the same equipment so that at least one of the trucks will make the trip in time to save the miners. Tantoo has a special reason for going on the trip. Her own brother, Cody, is one of the trapped miners.
The team of ice truckers and one mechanic must overcome a bunch of obstacles and disasters, including stalled engines, cracked ice, melting ice, and violent pressure waves, to save the miners. However, the biggest threat is one they never anticipated – some nefarious people don’t want them to reach their destination.
THE ICE ROAD is action packed, with a tremendous amount of jeopardy. The natural obstacles the heroes face are child’s play compared to the man-made obstacles they encounter. The result is a constant barrage of deadly situations. Liam Neeson excels, among other roles, at playing compassionate and passionate but tough Everymen who stand up against evil forces to defend and help other people. He does it once again here. ICE ROAD, however, also gives Neeson’s character another person along for the ride, a brother who has a personal issue to overcome. The brother is played by Marcus Thomas, who’s been laboring away in several smaller movies for the last 23 years. Thomas gives a strong, compelling and sympathetic performance. Ironically, though his character has aphasia, Thomas himself fluently speaks five different languages. Relative newcomer Amber Midthunder also gives a strong performance as the young but tough female ice road driver. She makes a terrific complement to the movie’s otherwise all-male cast. Finally, Laurence Fishburne gives another appealing performance as the man who hires the other drivers, and Benjamin Walker is very hateable and infuriating as the movie’s main villain, who turns out to be nearly indestructible. He never lets up on the good guys!
THE ICE ROAD has a strong moral worldview. It extols compassion, risking your life to save other people in desperate situations and sacrifice. There’s even a line that one man died to save the life of another person. Also, the female driver says a soft prayer during one tense life-or-death situation. THE ICE ROAD is marred, however, by at least 46 obscenities and profanities, including two “f” words and nine strong profanities. So, MOVIEGIUIDE® advises extreme caution.