Film Review – THE ICE ROAD (2021)

THE ICE ROAD (2021, USA/Canada) **
Action, Adventure
dist. Netflix (USA), Signature Entertainment (UK); pr co. Code Entertainment / ShivHans Pictures / Envision Media Arts / Ice Road Productions; d. Jonathan Hensleigh; w. Jonathan Hensleigh; pr. Al Corley, Eugene Musso, Lee Nelson, Shivani Rawat, Bart Rosenblatt, David Tish; ph. Tom Stern (Colour. DCP Digital Cinema Package. ARRIRAW (4.5K) (source format). 2.39:1); m. Max Aruj; ed. Douglas Crise; pd. Arvinder Greywal; ad. David Best; rel. 25 June 2021 (UK/USA – internet); BBFC cert: 12; r/t. 109m.
cast: Liam Neeson (Mike McCann), Marcus Thomas (Gurty McCann), Laurence Fishburne (Jim Goldenrod), Amber Midthunder (Tantoo), Benjamin Walker (Tom Varnay), Holt McCallany (Lampard), Martin Sensmeier (Cody Mantooth), Matt McCoy (GM George Sickle), Matt Salinger (CEO Thomason), Chad Bruce (Shift Super Mankins), Adam Hurtig (Fred Ford), Bradley Sawatzky (VP Operations Jack Tager), Marshall Williams (Mine Safety Supervisor Tully), Paul Essiembre (Deputy Minister O’Toole), Arne MacPherson (Miner Claude), Gabriel Daniels (Miner Barney), Natasha Elise Kotzubei (Lead VA Nurse), Lauren Cochrane (VA Nurse), Harry Nelken (VA Administrative), Al Corley (Doctor).
A grizzled Neeson is the main draw in this cliched action thriller. After a remote diamond mine collapses in far northern Canada, a ‘big-rig’ ice road driver (Neeson) must lead an impossible rescue mission over a frozen ocean to save the trapped miners. Saddled with a by-the-numbers script with some risible dialogue, Neeson and company still manage to inject some energy into the proceedings. Unfortunately, the plotting becomes increasingly illogical and the action sequences are unevenly directed and edited with sub-standard CGI.