NORTHERN LIGHTS has the feel of an old black and white photograph discovered in an attic. The bitter-sweet story of young lovers caught up in an political struggle waged by farmers against ... See full summary »


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Credited cast:
Robert Behling ...
Ray Sorensen
Susan Lynch ...
Inga Olsness
John Sorensen
Ray Ness ...
Henrik Sorensen
Marianna Åström-De Fina ...
Helen Ness ...
Jenny Sorensen
Thorbjörn Rue ...
Nick Eldredge ...
Jon Ness ...
Gary Hanisch ...
Charlie Forsythe
Ole Olsness
Adelaide Thorntveidt ...
Adelaide Olsness
Mabel Rue ...
Krist Toresen ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Bill Ackridge ...


NORTHERN LIGHTS has the feel of an old black and white photograph discovered in an attic. The bitter-sweet story of young lovers caught up in an political struggle waged by farmers against the grain trade, the banks and the railroads, NORTHERN LIGHTS brings back a forgotten era of American history and evokes the austere beauty of the Northern Plains. Written by Rob Nilsson

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | History


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Release Date:

17 November 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Aurora Boreal  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$354 (USA) (15 November 2013)


$5,291 (USA) (15 November 2013)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

See  »

Did You Know?


Northern Lights at times suggests the early work of Ingmar Bergman, where the visual bleakness of the background emphasizes the emotions of the people... at times too, it's reminiscent of the stories of Sinclair Lewis and John Steinbeck (New York Daily News). See more »


Ray's Hands
Written and Performed by Finbar Furey
courtesy Transatlantic Records
See more »

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User Reviews

this belongs on DVD - please!!!
18 April 2010 | by (Boston MA) – See all my reviews

My wife and I saw _Northern Lights_ on its release in a movie theater in the ante-VHS/DVD/Web era, and both share the view that this is a great film. It brings to mind Howard Zinn's _People's History of the United States_ in that it immerses us in an authentic American narrative that has generally not appeared in the mainstream, either historical or cinematic. It's over thirty years since I've seen it, so I can only report the memory of my feelings, and I recall being stirred and drawn in, emotionally engaged, feeling that this movie was a real work of art. It came up recently when we were discussing a visiting friend's ancestry. I'm bummed that it's apparently unavailable? On Amazon, the VHS tape is selling for a low of $74 and a high of $132.09. Doesn't this price suggest that there's a market for this film out there, so WOULDN'T IT MAKE BUSINESS SENSE to put it out on DVD? If anyone reading this knows how this works, maybe they could pursue it. Yoo-hoo, Criterion Collection?

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