Starring: Liam Neeson, Laurence Fishburne, Benjamin Walker, Amber Midthunder, Marcus Thomas, Holt McCallany, Martin Sensmeier, Matt McCoy, Matt Salinger
OUR RATING: ★★½
Action thriller written and directed by Jonathan Hensleigh. After a remote Canadian diamond mine collapses, The Ice Road (2021) follows Mike (Liam Neeson), an ice driver who leads an impossible rescue mission over a frozen ocean to save the lives of trapped miners despite thawing waters and a threat they never see coming.
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Johansson: How’s it feel to be best friends with a r**ard?
Mike: He’s my brother, Johansson. And I told you never to call him that.
[Mike hit him in the head with his flask, knocking him out]
Mike: [referring to Gurty] We’ve been together a long time, but he can’t hold a job, and I can’t carry him anymore. I don’t have a lot of tire left on my own treads.
Doctor: Hi, John, I’m Dr. Talbot. Pleased to meet you.
Gurty: Thank you, I appreciate it, and hope the world lasts for you.
Mike: He’s saying hello.
Tully: This morning, Tunnel 6 collapsed. I need an eighteen foot gas wellhead, three hundred feet of pipe delivered up there in under thirty hours.
Goldenrod: Eighteen foot gas wellhead, and three hundred feet of pipe? Goddamn, that’s a hell of a lot of weight, son.
Tully: Can you make it happen?
Goldenrod: What do I look like, God?
Tully: Say, for conversation’s sake, you have replacements.
Goldenrod: Well, say, for conversation’s sake, that these rigs have wings. What’ve you been smoking?
Tully: But didn’t old-timers in the ’60s drive the lake into April?
Goldenrod: Yeah, and most of them died doing it.
Tully: So it’s really that dangerous.
Goldenrod: Yeah! It’s that dangerous.
Goldenrod: If I can get drivers and a mechanic, let’s say three o’clock this afternoon, and if you can get the provincial government to open up the ice road, two very big ifs, we’ll do it.
Doctor: He has insomnia, hypertension, makes inappropriate outbursts.
Mike: Kiss my Irish a**!
Doctor: Post-traumatic stress disorder is real. I can Section 502 him.
Mike: Do it. The press’ll love another story about how the VA overprescribes opioids to America’s heroes.
Doctor: You are making a grave mistake.
Mike: You try and stop us from leaving here, so are you.
Mike: Ever been to Winnipeg, Gurty? It’s just seventy miles.
Gurty: “Win a pig.”
Mike: We might, partner. With any luck, today we might just win a pig.
Goldenrod: Tully, give me fifty bucks. You got fifty bucks?
Tully: Yeah, I do.
Goldenrod: One of my drivers just became available. Thanks.
Tully: Fantastic. What’s it for?
Goldenrod: Told you this wasn’t going to be easy.
Desk Cop: You protest and throw rocks again, we’ll arrest you again.
Tantoo: We’re going to keep doing it until you get off our land.
Desk Cop: The city owns that parking lot.
Tantoo: I was referring to North America.
Goldenrod: [to Tantoo] How’s the fight for justice going? You keep building casinos, you’ll beat the white man without a shot fired.
Goldenrod: I’m putting together a little rescue mission.
Tantoo: Ice road?
Tantoo: I’m in.
Goldenrod: You’re the driver? He’s the mechanic?
Mike: [referring to Gurty] Yep. One of the best.
Goldenrod: Says you had experience on the ice road in the Northwest Territory. That’s pretty serious country. What did you drive?
Mike: Anything on wheels.
Cody: Wellheads arrive ASAP. What do they mean, ASAP? Six hours? Twelve hours?
Mankins: What if it’s thirty?
Cody: Then we’re dead.
Tager: So the question is time. I mean, no one’s ever lasted over thirty hours under permafrost.
Tager: If Jim Goldenrod believes twenty-five ton wellheads can roll across a frozen lake in April, I suppose we should believe it too.
Goldenrod: These wellheads are beasts, eighteen feet long, twenty-five ton heavy. We got three rigs, all identically equipped so that we can achieve tactical redundancy. We’re taking every chance to save those miners lives.
Tantoo: Tactical re-whatancy?
Mike: Redundancy. Each rig doesn’t need the others to complete the mission.
Goldenrod: Gold star to the man from North Dakota.
Mike: What happens to anyone that doesn’t make it? To their money?
Tully: Paragraph four. Their share goes to those that do.
Mike: That’s pretty cold.
Tantoo: Sounds fair to me.
Varnay: Tantoo, is it? Tully says you’re Cree. What’s your name mean?
Tantoo: Name mean “like to drive alone”.
Goldenrod: Mount up! Use the head if you have to now. We’re on a Bull Run!
Mike: I thought I heard every trucker’s expression. What the heck’s a Bull Run?
Goldenrod: Bull Run. Well, back in Minnesota, all the livestock haulers never used to stop, because bulls, you see, got to be standing when they’re being transported. Because if one gets tired and lies down, then the others will step on him and kill him. All livestock haulers know this, so they never stop for anything.
Mike: Ah, I see. I’m learning something tonight.
Tantoo: Hey, Jim, how you feeling about the ice?
Goldenrod: Cold, hard, and stiff. I wish we weren’t running in bright sunshine tomorrow though.
Tantoo: You’ll know when I’m hungry. It’s very unattractive.
Varnay: You get cranky?
Tantoo: Worse, I act white.
Goldenrod: Naming a big rig’s a sacred thing.
Mike: What will we name our truck, Gurty?
Gurty: Truck Truck Truck.
Mike: You hear that?
Goldenrod: “Truck Truck Truck.” I like it. It’s got a ring to it.
Tantoo: You go too fast, you create a pressure wave. In you go. You go too slow, the ice can’t handle the pounds per square inch on your tire. In you go.
Goldenrod: Sweet Jesus, that ain’t good.
Tantoo: What the hell are you doing?
Mike: Going back.
Tantoo: I thought we weren’t stopping for anything. You know, all that Bull Run stuff?
Mike: I said, we’re going back.
Goldenrod: Towline’s got me! Cut me loose. My leg’s broken. Cut me loose, or you’re all going in! Towline’s got me, and my leg’s broken. Do it! Do it!
Tantoo: I can’t.
Goldenrod: Do it! Do it!