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Fresh off a four year prison stint for a mysterious murder charge, Alex Hughes, played by the fantastic Alan Rickman, is a docile, middle-aged Englishman on the way to Winnipeg, Canada. Not receptive to company after a long plane ride, he is approached in a diner by Vivienne, a young woman with a bubbly personality played by Emily Hampshire. Chatty and extroverted, she invites herself to sit down at his table and tells him all about herself. He is not in the mood to chat, but begrudgingly lets her bum a ride in his truck.
During their trip she eventually gets him to open up, and they establish a lovely rapport. Unfortunately, near the end of their journey they are rammed by a tractor trailer and Vivienne is killed instantly. Rattled and wholly devastated at her loss, Alex is compelled to contact her mother, Linda, played with unprecedented skill by Sigourney Weaver, to explain what happened as well as deliver gifts Vivienne bought.
When he meets Linda, he discovers that she is a high-functioning autistic woman who barely strays from her home and has a myriad of obsessions, among them cleanliness ("Don't go in my kitchen!"), her trampoline and, strangely, snow. Nonetheless upset at her daughter's death, she is inhibited by her disease which tempers her outward devastation. He tries to apologize, but she sees no need for one.Read more ›
Don't look for romantic fireworks or a dramatic ending in this movie. It's just the story of three people with their own secrets brought together by a tragic event. I found myself drawn into their lives, as they were drawn into each other's lives.
Once you see this movie, you will understand why I say it was "dalzious."
She wasn't wrong when she picked Alex Hughes (Alan Rickman) out of all the diner customers to share a table with.
She really wasn't even wrong when she convinced him to give her a ride. The crash that killed her wasn't Alex's fault--a semi driver rammed his car and killed her.
Not knowing what else to do, Alex went to see Vivienne's Mom (Weaver) only to find that she was a high functioning autistic person with no one to care for her. Alex stayed til the funeral was over--and those days really are what the story is about.
Alex merely wants to help. While he doesn't understand Linda's condition, he very well knows the grief of losing a child and by helping her he is also working through his own issues. Rickman's portrayal of Alex may well be his best role in his career--and I have loved his performances for many years.
Weaver is also stellar as Linda. If I didn't know better, I would have said they'd recruited an autistic woman to play the role--and that to me, is the mark of really fine acting. The actor is lost when they become the part.
I cannot say this is a movie I would ever own. I doubt I will see "Snow Cake" again, but I would strongly recommend it to anyone who needs to deal with an autistic person. It's a very good illustration of how a high functioning autistic person relates to their environment.
A viscerally shocking moment leads Alex quite unexpectedly to meet Vivienne's mother Linda, a high-functioning autistic woman who is manically fastidious and emotionally disconnected from the people around her. Before you can say Rain Man, Alex and Linda forge a friendly alliance in which life lessons are learned, often under adversity, until the two must part. Meanwhile, an attraction is sparked between Alex and Linda's next-door neighbor Maggie, a sultry yet kindly divorcee whom Linda thinks is a prostitute. Give Pell credit for steering clear of the life-affirming clichés that would have marked this as a misplaced Lifetime TV-movie. Pell's personal insights are invaluable given that she has an autistic son. At the same time, Evans' handling of Alex's spiritual reawakening lacks the intensity that would have allowed the film to take flight.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I adore this movie and I think it's highly underrated especially since there's superb acting going on between Weaver and Rickman. A lovely and endearing film. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Samantha B.
I'm so grateful to have this wonderful movie! Amazon, you're great!Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
This is a film that will not age, at least not really. It is the second film on the subject of autism that has the status of a classic. The first one was Dustin Hoffman’s Rain Man. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Dr Jacques COULARDEAU
I've seen this film several times and highly recommend it. An unusual story which treats autism with intelligence and tenderness. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Rene' Donovan