A female humpback whale is stranded in a small area during a storm. Fishermen of the village seek to kill the whale but a man visiting the area fights to save the whale's life.



, (book)
Nominated for 2 Primetime Emmys. See more awards »


Credited cast:
Charles Landon
Janet Landon (as Dee Wallace-Stone)
Dr. Linda McFarland
Ken James ...
David Ferry ...
Johnny Goodenough
Tom Goodenough
David Hollander ...
Stevie Landon
Bill Calvert ...
Tony Landon
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jon Baggaley ...
Reuven Bar-Yotam
Boy on Bridge
Colin Fox
Jack Jozefson
Larry Reynolds


A female humpback whale is stranded in a small area during a storm. Fishermen of the village seek to kill the whale but a man visiting the area fights to save the whale's life.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

1 February 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Der Fremde und der Wal  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Referenced in Basil Poledouris: His Life and Music (1997) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Good TV movie about local rednecks (me) trying to shoot a stranded humpback whale with "city folk, strangers" getting' in the way.
27 February 2011 | by (Onaka, SD) – See all my reviews

Barely remember this and uncertain if it is exactly the movie I am thinking of. There is a humpback whale stuck in a bay because of current low tides but there was high tides when the whale went into the bay. When discovered by locals in small, harbor town, some of the gun nuts or hunters want to go shoot it as it would be pretty awesome to say you shot a whale in the bay near your town. Think of THAT head on your mantle!! Some non-locals who happen to be there for some reason....I think it was they were ship wrecked, step in, reluctantly, to stop them from shooting the whale and try to get the whale back into the ocean. I don't remember how it ended or what happened but there is some good drama btw the redneck hunters and the visiting "whale savers".

I was a young kid when I saw this and later got a high fever up to 105-106 F from some virus or hot summer heat. I started hallucinating and starting picturing this movie happening in the window of my bedroom and was freaked out about how we could fit all the fish and whale in my bedroom. My mother was very worried about me and thought I was possessed by the devil because once during this illness i apparently turned and told her "Mom, I hate God!" Well, a few days later on the way to the doctor and sitting in front of an air conditioner, my fever broke and I was fine. I only remember the hallucinations about the fish and this movie. It took me forever to remember what the name of the movie was and thanks to IMDb.com I believe this is it.

I am a hunter and enjoy guns, but am not a fan of killing endangered species and don't condone shooting humpback whales in your local harbor just because you can. My earlier comments were satirical and tongue-in-cheek. It is possible to enjoy guns without being ridiculous about it...but then you don't get to be on TV or the NRA because they only accept crazies and those good for TV ratings. Common sense and reason aren't good for TV ratings.

Anyhow, wish I could find a copy of this movie so I could watch it again.

5 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Where to buy this movie. craig-courtney
Alan Doyle from Great Big Sea was in this.... radiokaraoke
Discuss A Whale for the Killing (1981) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: