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11 user 5 critic

Wolf Lake (1980)

R | | Drama, Thriller | 1978 (USA)
War veterans visit a lakeside cabin for a week of shooting, drinking, etc. but find the cabin being looked after by a young caretaker named David. When David's status as a war deserter is revealed, all hell breaks loose.

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Cast

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Charlie
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David
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Linda
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Wilbur
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George
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Sweeney
Conrad Hool ...
The Pilot (as Alan Conrad)
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Storyline

War veterans visit a lakeside cabin for a week of shooting, drinking, etc. but find the cabin being looked after by a young caretaker named David. When David's status as a war deserter is revealed, all hell breaks loose.

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Survive the night at Wolf Lake if the suspense doesn't kill you first! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Honor Guard  »

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Budget:

$970,000 (estimated)
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Trivia

This was originally intended as a starring vehicle for Lee Marvin. See more »

Connections

Featured in Jerry Hardin and Richard Herd on 'Wolf Lake' (2016) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Testosterone on Tape!
4 May 2010 | by (the Draconian Swamp of Unholy Souls) – See all my reviews

"Wolf Lake" is obscure 70's exploitation at its finest: raw & moody atmosphere, straightforward action and real manly actors in the roles of hard-headed chauvinist macho characters! Originality might not be this film's biggest trump, perhaps, but it's intense and unsettling from start to finish and brought to an even higher level by the phenomenal performance of Rod Steiger as the embittered War veteran with outmoded patriotic ideals. Charlie, along with three of his obedient and docile buddies, arrive at Wolf Lake for their annual weekend of duck hunting, poker gaming and whiskey boozing. Their usual contact person isn't there, but they meet with the young caretaker David and his sexy girlfriend Linda. They find out David is a fugitive Vietnam deserter, and this happens to be a very sensitive issue for Charlie, because he lost his son there. To him, all deserters are cowards who're to blame for the downfall of America. Charlie taunts and provokes David, but the posse really goes too far during a wild drinking party. And you know how that goes, once you cross a certain line …. there's no way back. "Wolf Lake" is obviously inspired by the 70's trends of (Vietnam) veterans going mental ("Open Season", "Rolling Thunder") and remote backwoods survival thrillers ("Deliverance", "Straw Dogs"). Writer/director Burt Kennedy may not be Sam Peckinpah or John Boorman, but he undeniably manages to keep his movie suspenseful and creepy. The isolated setting is very effective, for starters, and so are Ken Thorne's pounding score and the unnervingly slow pacing. Some political debate sequences are so intelligent and powerful that it's a real shame that the film remained so obscure and unavailable on DVD. The only really annoying thing about "Wolf Lake" is that the plot stupidly spoils itself the entire time by showing brief but revealing images of vital things happening later in the film. What the hell's the point of that?


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