WAYS TO
WATCH:

See all
A photographer is trapped in Cambodia during tyrant Pol Pot's bloody "Year Zero" cleansing campaign, which claimed the lives of two million "undesirable" civilians.

Director:

Writer:

(screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
3,894 ( 26)
Won 3 Oscars. Another 24 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Mission (1986)
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

18th century Spanish Jesuits try to protect a remote South American Indian tribe in danger of falling under the rule of pro-slavery Portugal.

Director: Roland Joffé
Stars: Robert De Niro, Jeremy Irons, Ray McAnally
Salvador (1986)
Drama | History | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An American photojournalist gets caught in a political struggle at El Salvador in 1980.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: James Woods, James Belushi, Michael Murphy
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A young Australian reporter tries to navigate the political turmoil of Indonesia during the rule of President Sukarno with the help of a diminutive photographer.

Director: Peter Weir
Stars: Mel Gibson, Sigourney Weaver, Linda Hunt
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Cultural mistrust and false accusations doom a friendship in British colonial India between an Indian doctor, an Englishwoman engaged to marry a city magistrate, and an English educator.

Director: David Lean
Stars: Judy Davis, Victor Banerjee, Peggy Ashcroft
Missing (1982)
Drama | History | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

When an idealistic writer disappears during the Right Wing military coup in 1973 Chile, his wife and American businessman father try to find him.

Director: Costa-Gavras
Stars: Jack Lemmon, Sissy Spacek, Melanie Mayron
Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Two British soldiers in India decide to resign from the Army and set themselves up as deities in Kafiristan--a land where no white man has set foot since Alexander.

Director: John Huston
Stars: Sean Connery, Michael Caine, Christopher Plummer
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

The life of a Russian physician and poet who, although married to another, falls in love with a political activist's wife and experiences hardship during the First World War and then the October Revolution.

Director: David Lean
Stars: Omar Sharif, Julie Christie, Geraldine Chaplin
You Laugh (1998)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Two segments: In the first one Felice, a baritone who has had to give up his career because of a heart condition and now works as an accountant at the Opera, inexplicably spends his nights ... See full summary »

Directors: Paolo Taviani, Vittorio Taviani
Stars: Antonio Albanese, Giuseppe Cederna, Luca Zingaretti
Mon amie Max (1994)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Catherine, a concert pianist, is surprised one night by the arrival of her best friend from childhood, Marie-Alexandrine (Max), whom she hasn't seen for 25 years. Catherine and Max were ... See full summary »

Director: Michel Brault
Stars: Geneviève Bujold, Marthe Keller, Johanne McKay
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

After another cardiac arrest, Armand knows he doesn't have long to live. But after more than 70 years in the same house, he doesn't want to die anywhere else. His wife, Rose, has secretly ... See full summary »

Director: Jean Pierre Lefebvre
Stars: Marthe Nadeau, J. Léo Gagnon, Marcel Sabourin
Trotta (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Director: Johannes Schaaf
Stars: András Bálint, Rosemarie Fendel, Doris Kunstmann
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

In Quebec 40s, orphans or abandoned children are placed in a gigantic psychiatric hospital where children were locked. Were they sick? No, they simply had no family. To escape this ... See full summary »

Director: Claude Jutra
Stars: Paule Baillargeon, Ginette Boivin, Lisette Dufour
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Dith Pran (as Dr. Haing S Ngor)
...
Al Rockoff
...
...
Military Attaché
...
U.S. Consul
...
Dr. MacEntire
Athol Fugard ...
Dr. Sundesval
Graham Kennedy ...
Dougal
Katherine Krapum Chey ...
Ser Moeum (Pran's Wife)
Oliver Pierpaoli ...
Titony (Pran's Son)
Edward Entero Chey ...
Sarun
Tom Bird ...
U.S. Military Advisor
Monirak Sisowath ...
Phat (K.R. Leader 2nd Village)
Lambool Dtangpaibool ...
Phat's Son
Edit

Storyline

Sydney Schanberg is a New York Times journalist covering the civil war in Cambodia. Together with local representative Dith Pran, they cover some of the tragedy and madness of the war. When the American forces leave, Dith Pran sends his family with them, but stays behind himself to help Schanberg cover the event. As an American, Schanberg won't have any trouble leaving the country, but the situation is different for Pran; he's a local, and the Khmer Rouge are moving in. Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Every so often, there is a film that is destined to be talked about and remembered for years to come. See more »

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

1 February 1985 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Los gritos del silencio  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Gross:

$34,600,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Supporting actor Spalding Gray wrote a monologue about his experiences filming this movie, which was later filmed as Swimming to Cambodia (1987). See more »

Goofs

Throughout his entire trek through the jungle to salvation, Pran remains perfectly clean-shaven. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Sydney Schanberg: Cambodia. To many westerners it seemed a paradise. Another world, a secret world. But the war in neighboring Vietnam burst its borders, and the fighting soon spread to neutral Cambodia. In 1973 I went to cover this side-show struggle as a foreign correspondent of the New York Times. It was there, in the war-torn country side amidst the fighting between government troops and the Khmer Rouge guerrillas, that I met my guide and interpreter, Dith Pran, a man who was to change my life ...
See more »

Connections

Featured in The 57th Annual Academy Awards (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

Imagine
Written by John Lennon (uncredited)
Performed by John Lennon & The Plastic Ono Band (uncredited)
Courtesy of EMI Records Limited
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

The best war film ever made.
7 November 2002 | by See all my reviews

Rating: **** Out of ****

Hard to say, but I believe when it comes to the war genre, The Killing Fields manages to edge out even Saving Private Ryan, and without a doubt, there's no better war film out there that's done a better job of capturing the realistic details and emotional loss of the time period (that being, the 70's in Cambodia/Vietnam).

Thus, I've always considered it a little odd that no one I know has even heard of this film. When lists of the greatest war films are decided, I don't believe I've ever seen this film crack any list. And the reason is simple: The Killing Fields is often ignored because it doesn't come from a soldier's point of view, and neither does it feature any adrenaline-pumping battle sequences. The fact that a strong portion of the film (about 2/5's) comes entirely from a Cambodian man's viewpoint might throw off a few viewers here and there. And yet, the film does just as fine a job as any anti-war film in creating a frightenining, chaotic world.

The performances all around superb without exception. Haing S. Ngor, who was tragically killed a few years ago, delivers a riveting, emotionally wrenching turn as the guide who is trapped in Cambodia and forced to fight for his life. He deservingly won the Oscar, though it's a shame he was snubbed for the best actor award. Inarguably, he's the film's central character and he also has more screen time than top-billed Sam Waterston. Despite my complaint on that matter, Waterston is also excellent as the journalist with a guilty conscience.

The Killing Fields is a suspenseful and exhilarating experience, a journey through an apocalyptic landscape that features one shocking image after another. Watch, and you'll see why the film is so acclaimed.


101 of 121 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
dreadful soundtrack jebelesstoss
WEstern Support for Pol Pot nuwansube
disappointing cocacolabs
just a thought kimkegaard
What annoyed me submarine-2
Marx vs Pol Pot's Regime tornadouk
Discuss The Killing Fields (1984) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?