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Cold River (1982)

 -  Adventure  -  March 1982 (USA)
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Based on the novel Winterkill, by William Judson, Cold River is the story of an Adirondack guide who takes his young daughter and step-son on a long camping trip in the fall of 1932. When ... See full summary »



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Title: Cold River (1982)

Cold River (1982) on IMDb 6.2/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Suzanne Weber ...
Lizzy Allison
Pat Petersen ...
Tim Hood
Mike Allison
Robert Earl Jones ...
The Trapper
Brad Sullivan ...
Reuban Knat
Elizabeth Hubbard ...
Pauline Hood Allison
Augusta Dabney ...
Elizabeth Allison
Adam Petroski ...
Seth Bishop
David Thomas ...
Senate Chairman
Wade Barnes ...
Pompous Senator
Deborah Beck ...
Trent Gough ...
Robert Donley ...
Pete the Guide
Tom Kubiak ...
Mary Ellen Badger ...


Based on the novel Winterkill, by William Judson, Cold River is the story of an Adirondack guide who takes his young daughter and step-son on a long camping trip in the fall of 1932. When winter strikes unexpectedly early (a natural phenomenon known as a 'winterkill' - so named because the animals are totally unprepared for a sudden, early winter, and many freeze or starve to death), he suffers a fatal heart attack, leaving his two children to find their own way home without food, or protection from the elements. Rated PG for mild violence and language. Written by John N. Daily

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Plot Keywords:

winter | camping | starving | wilderness | snow | See more »




PG | See all certifications »




Release Date:

March 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Julma joki  »

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Referenced in The Beer Drinker's Guide to Fitness and Filmmaking (1987) See more »

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User Reviews

Understandably obscure
25 March 2003 | by (Victoria, BC) – See all my reviews

One of the last releases by Pacific International Enterprises (the folks behind the WILDERNESS FAMILY movies), COLD RIVER seems to have been a troubled production. Many of the tell-tale signs can be seen in the closing credits, which list a 1979 copyright date and an unusual number of assistant directors and photographers. It's also evident in the movie itself, mainly from a present day prologue and epilogue. These bookends not only barely connect with the events in the main body, but has no real satisfying conclusion - just like the main story told between them!

The rest of the movie is pretty unsatisfying as well. Despite being almost completely shot outdoors, the movie is surprisingly dull to look at, due both to dark and murky photography and bland locations. It also moves at a pace that's slow as our protagonists trudging through the snow. The kids don't have that much dialogue (that's of real substance, anyway), so it's hard to get involved in their hardship and struggle. Robert Earl Jones does add a little life temporarily when his character appears.

I haven't read the novel this movie is based on (which must be popular, because it's still in print after about three decades), but I'm pretty confident fans of it will be disappointed with this adaptation.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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