“Thin Ice”
It’s very difficult to like “Thin Ice,” because none of the characters are likeable.
There’s Mickey (Greg Kinnear), a small-town Wisconsin insurance agent who’s operating on the shady side of his respectable profession. He sells people more insurance than they really need, because they trust him. He hires a new agent at a convention, telling him to work out of his car because he has six successful agents already, when in fact he’s the only one. Then he takes the new agent’s commissions by signing for him until he gets his license. He keeps “funny books,” and promises, but doesn’t deliver, a salary raise to his office manager. He’s estranged from his wife, and her teenage son, because she feels betrayed by the way he took out a second mortgage on the house without even telling her (and now that money is gone, also, but he’s going to pay it back).
So it comes as no surprise that when Mickey runs into an opportunity, with a new client that his new agent has recruited, he grabs it. The old man lives by himself in an old farmhouse, and seems about half out of it. He has an old violin that looks valuable, but he lets the dog play with it, and Mickey offers to buy it from him for $10, saying it’s for his stepson. Then the whole thing starts spinning out of control. Before long, Mickey finds himself in a labyrinth of shady deals and seedy betrayals, and he’s not even afraid to badger his ex-wife for money in church. Would it help us to see Mickey get his comeuppance? Not really. We just want him to go away.
They advertise it as “dark humor.” More sardonic and cynical, actually. Nothing happy here, so this reviewer suggests that you happily pass on this one.
Dr. Ronald P. Salfen, Interim Pastor, St. Stephen’s Presbyterian Church, Irving , Texas