The story of Karen Silkwood, a metallurgy worker at a plutonium processing plant who was purposefully contaminated, psychologically tortured and possibly murdered to prevent her from exposing blatant worker safety violations at the plant.

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Nominated for 5 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Paul Stone
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Earl Lapin
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Max Richter
Sudie Bond ...
Thelma Rice
Henderson Forsythe ...
Quincy Bissell
E. Katherine Kerr ...
Gilda Schultz
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Mace Hurley
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Wesley
J.C. Quinn ...
Curtis Schultz
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Storyline

Fairly accurate recounting of the story of Karen Silkwood, the Oklahoma nuclear-plant worker who blew the whistle on dangerous practices at the Kerr-McGee plant and who died under circumstances which are still under debate. Written by Susan C. Mitchell <susanm@indirect.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

On November 13, 1974, Karen Silkwood, an employee of a nuclear facility, left to meet with a reporter from the New York Times. She never got there.


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

27 January 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El caso Silkwood - Escándalo nuclear  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Gross:

$35,600,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

On meeting Cher for the first time, Meryl Streep said, "I was already in the mindset of 'My friend is coming, I have somebody on my side.'" In a 1983 interview Streep said that there was some awkwardness between them in the beginning, but it quickly dissipated. "We had to get used to each other. Accept each other. On my side, I was thinking, Cher! You know, from 'I Got You, Babe' and all those other records I bought. She, on the other hand, apparently had an image of me as sitting at the right hand of Dame Edith Sitwell. I think she was intimidated by my rep." See more »

Goofs

In a scene set in Washington, D.C. in 1974, a marching band can be heard in the background performing Kool and the Gang's "Celebration". The song was released in 1980. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Man on the intercom: Name?
Karen Silkwood: Karen Silkwood.
Drew Stephens: Drew Stephens.
Dolly Pelliker: Dolly Pelliker.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Gilmore Girls: Secrets and Loans (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Pretty Little Horses Lullaby
Written by Georges Delerue
Performed by Meryl Streep and Cher
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User Reviews

 
Considering the time period, a pretty good film.
23 October 2003 | by (New York, NY) – See all my reviews

I took the time to register with IMDB just to present a more accurate review of this movie than the person that wrote that the movie was a joke. While not one of the best movies of its type, it's still pretty well done. The story moves along well....clues are dropped throughout the movie to show the possible conspiracy at work. I would consider "The Insider" as one of the better movies of this type that was made in recent years, and even that movie shows traces of having evolved from movies like Silkwood.

I find most movies of this type that were done in the 80s as generally pretty cheesy. Silkwood does a pretty good job of "not being too cheesy". And if there is any trace of "cheesiness" (if you will), it's represented in the way that the townspeople react to Karen Silkwood. And the reactions worked for me, because when I think of how seriously people reacted to issues like nuclear or toxic contamination back in the late 70s/early 80s, there was a lot less info available. Nowadays in the "Oprah" and "11 o'clock news warnings" generation, where there's something new that we should be cautious of everyday, these types of stories are much more believable.

Meryl Streep (as expected) far outshines the rest of the cast. Kurt Russell turns out a pretty nice performance. Cher's performance was ok. I think at the time she probably received a lot more recognition for this role because it began to show her range. But she's been better in subsequent roles.

All in all, Silkwood is a movie that doesn't suprise or open the eyes of all the conspiracy- conscious people that are alive in 2003, but it does provide a touching story about a town that was dealing with the prospect of having to choose between the risk of toxic infection and their livelihood. But the real story here is about the one woman that cared enough to dig a little and ask a few questions and the danger that developed from taking a stand. 8 out of 10.


18 of 19 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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