Winter Kill (TV Movie 1974) Poster

(1974 TV Movie)

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Frightening childhood memories
Benjamin Wolfe24 July 2006
I recall staying up late one night back in 74' and watching this in the dark with my older brother, all while staying over night at my grandma's house, down stairs in the basement. I guess you could say that was a perfect setting.

I was enthralled in the story and I remember a night scene in which pebbles were tossed at a window, where a woman lived (I assumed it was her home) by some unknown person, just tossing them to get her attention, one at a time. Finally getting her attention, she stood in the window and by the time the audience figured something was about to happen, she was fatally shot to death!! I was horrified. This T.V. thriller seemed to have a pace that was a little sleepy in it's delivery of the story and the action of the characters in some parts, but that was probably just the 'm.o.' of it.

Now it's been over 30 years and I would really enjoy seeing this again from beginning to end, but I wouldn't know where to look for it on the dial. I don't know if it is on tape or disk either. Some of the classic stuff doesn't always get market shelved to the public, like it should.

Anyway if you are an Andy Griffith fan, I should think you would like him in this and be intrigued by this story too. I rate it an 8. (***)
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Great film
JenCon12 May 2000
I just saw this wednesday and I thought it was great! It's alway's nice to see Andy Griffith in a movie were he's a good person and a sheriff to boot. I agree with the commentor about the scenery, simply breathe taking and the ending is great and suspenceful. Any Andy Griffith fan will love this film...the best and a must see!!!
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Excellent Made for TV Movie
Tony Rome19 March 2011
This is a great suspenseful thriller. I found out that this was an unsold pilot for a show that was to be called "Adams of Eagle Lake," I see on that page that they shot 2 episodes with Nick Nolte playing the sheiff, a character change from this TV movie. The film has an excellent supporting cast. Eugene Roche is very good as the towns activity coordinator. His role was reminiscent of Murray Hamiltons role in "Jaws," Young Nick Nolte is equally as good, you can see that he had possibilities of being a really good actor, which he succeeded at until his personal problems got in the way. Andy Griffith was excellent. This film stands as a testament to Andy, illustrating the fact that he was easily able to move away from the role of Sheriff Andy of Mayberry. ***1/2 stars.
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A good 70s period piece
praxistens16 June 2009
After Mayberry, producers plugged Andy Griffith back into a sheriff's role & transplanted him to the high country of N. California. The town (Eagle Lake) is a ski resort, where Nick Nolte, a year or so shy of his big break in "Rich Man, Poor Man," is an instructor. A sudden string of homicides has the town fathers eager for a resolution before the tourist season begins (a theme used a year later in the theatrical "Jaws").

TV movies were becoming the forum for the changing morality & formerly taboo topics (the sheriff has a live-in girl friend; the plot revolves around the locals that aided in a young woman's abortion), even moreso than theatrical flicks, & "Winter Kill" is a fine crucible of the kinds of things the networks were peddling in prime time back then. There @Eagle Lake, the adulterers probably outnumber the tourists.

Movie features a slew of familiar TV faces of the time: John Larch, Eugene Roche, Charles Tyner. Occasionally rebroadcast on TNT, altho it might be more @home on Lifetime. Some good suspense; definitely not for children.
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Good Mystery movie. Griffith always plays a good sheriff !
Eddie-4418 November 1998
Anything Andy Griffith plays in as a sheriff is usually good. This movie keeps the viewer in suspense until (almost) the end, when it becomes apparent who the villain is. Interesting, and nice scenery.
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A mystery with a fun 70's cast
Tony Hernandez2 May 2010
Warning: Spoilers
This is one of the many movies that a local TV station in Reno used to run on weekday afternoons. I first saw it in 1979 or 1980. It creep-ed me out as a kid, but today I appreciate the 1970's atmosphere, the ubiquitous TV movie cast (Joyce Van Patten, Eugene Roche, John Larch, Charles Tyner, and Robert F. Simon among others), the good will that Andy Griffith always generates in this type of role.

It is worth watching this movie just to see a man wearing an entire suit made of corduroy (while he is at work, as an attorney). As creepy as that may seem today, the masked killer, some atmospheric shock scenes, and the sense that anyone could be next are what keep the movie going.

There is a terrific scene between Griffith (as the town sheriff) and Charles Tyner (as one of many suspects). The look on Tyner's face when a deputy delivers a critical piece of news shows the value that character actors can bring to a little movie like this.

Also noteworthy is the fine performance by Sheree North as Griffith's weary romantic interest.

All in all, a nice time-filler that is available on DVD from the low-budget Warner Archive collection.
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An ok TV thriller
b-a-h TNT-623 January 2002
Clearly done on a rather low budget, the TV movie Winter Kill is not a great piece of film making by any stretch, but it might be worth a view.

The plot revolves around the search for a serial killer in a small ski resort town. So ok, some of the supporting actors are not very good, and the first part of the movie is meandering and slow enough to test the patience of a few viewers. However, when the movie got into gear in the second part, it managed to be entertaining and well-thought, if not rightdown tense, and the resolution left me pretty satisfied.

Andy Griffith is convincing as the Sheriff. Between the supporting cast, a young Nick Nolte in one of his first screen appearances.
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