IMDb > Born American (1986)
Born American
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Born American (1986) More at IMDbPro »

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Down 19% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Renny Harlin (written by) &
Markus Selin (written by)
View company contact information for Born American on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
29 August 1986 (USA) See more »
Freedom is just a word...until you lose it.
Three American students vacationing in Finland, cross the border into Russia for fun of it. When they... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Worth slowing down while passing this car wreck See more (17 total) »


  (in credits order)

Mike Norris ... Savoy
Steve Durham ... Mitch

David Coburn ... K.C.

Thalmus Rasulala ... The Admiral

Albert Salmi ... United States emissary
Piita Vuosalmi ... Nadja
Vesa Vierikko ... Kapsky
Ismo Kallio ... Zarkov
Laura Munsterhjelm ... Irina (as Laura Heimo)
Antti Horko ... Cossack
Pauli Virtanen ... Sergei
Jone Takamäki ... Interrogator (as Jouni Takamäki)
Inkeri Luoma-aho ... Female Guard
Markku Blomqvist ... Irina's Father
Sari Havas ... Girl at Party
Marjo Vuollo ... Tamara
Juhani Tuominen ... Car salesman
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Renny Harlin ... Man's Voice from Ship's Loudspeakers (voice) (uncredited)
Eero Henttonen ... Prisoner (uncredited)
Mats Helge Olsson ... Priest (uncredited)
Stack Pierce ... The Admiral (voice) (uncredited)
Rapa Ripa ... KGB Man (uncredited)
Jorma Vaittinen ... Prisoner (uncredited)

Directed by
Renny Harlin 
Writing credits
Renny Harlin (written by) &
Markus Selin (written by)

Produced by
Markus Selin .... produced by
Venetia Stevenson .... executive in charge of production
Original Music by
Richard G. Mitchell (music composed and arranged by)
Cinematography by
Henrik Paersch (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Paul Martin Smith (edited by)
Production Design by
Venetia Stevenson 
Costume Design by
Anja Pekkala 
Makeup Department
Tuija Luukkainen .... makeup artist
Suzanne Parker Sanders .... makeup designer (as Suzanne Sanders)
Sirpa Östring-Järvinen .... makeup artist (as Sirpa Östring)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Paul Martin Hardesty .... first assistant director
Harry Päiväläinen .... second assistant director
Art Department
Torsti Nyholm .... set designer
Lauri Orava .... construction assistant
Terhi Tammila .... property master
Ari Törmä .... construction manager
Kauno Ylivirta .... construction assistant
Tapsa Rantanen .... poster designer (uncredited)
Sound Department
Seppo Anttila .... boom operator
Brigitte Arnold .... assistant sound editor
Dean Humphreys .... dubbing mixer
Peter Lennard .... sound effects consultant
Alex Mackie .... assistant sound editor
Clive Osborne .... boom operator
Shirley Shaw .... sound editor
Lionel Strutt .... adr recording mixer
Brian Trenerry .... footsteps editor (as Brian Trennery)
Ian Voigt .... sound mixer
Special Effects by
Karl von Kugelgen .... special effects: pyrotechnics (as Karl von Kügelgen)
Osmo Savolainen .... special effects
Mats Helge Olsson .... special effects: Karesuvanto (uncredited)
Gary Baxley .... stunts
Eddie Braun .... stunt coordinator
Antti Horko .... stunts
Juha Huhtamaa .... stunts
Gary Pike .... stunts
Víctor Quintero .... stunts (as Victor Quintero)
Rapa Ripa .... stunts
Theodore Braun .... stunts (uncredited)
Renny Harlin .... stunt double (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Juha Huhtamaa .... grip
Jussi Jalasti .... assistant cameraman
Timo Jalasti .... second assistant cameraman
Esko Jantunen .... gaffer (as Esko-Juhani Jantunen)
Pertti Mutanen .... second camera operator (as Mussu Mutanen)
Petri Mäkinen .... best boy
Tarmo Nyholm .... grip
Torsti Nyholm .... gaffer
Kari Petäjäniemi .... still photographer
Timo Salminen .... third camera operator
Jukki Tuura .... key grip
Jari Wiik .... grip
Casting Department
Marjatta Seulanto .... extras casting
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Ritva Harley .... wardrobe assistant
Ritva Orava .... wardrobe assistant
Nick Perry .... costumer
Tuire Pohjola .... wardrobe assistant
Editorial Department
Alex Denholm .... assistant editor
Trevor Holland .... assistant editor
Timo Nousiainen .... color grading
Chris Wyatt .... assistant editor
Music Department
Richard G. Mitchell .... musician: synthesizer (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Jari Koivu .... transportation
Marko Leikola .... transportation
Other crew
John Bevan .... story editor
Ed Margulies .... unit publicity (as Ed Marqulies)
Debra Mendel .... production coordinator: USA
Ian Morrison .... post-production coordinator
Nina Pajarinen .... wrangler
Asta Parikka .... script supervisor
Pekka Pohjolainen .... guns and ammunition
Leena Rautiainen .... assistant accountant
Tiina Romakkaniemi .... production secretary
Florian Schereck .... production accountant
Henna Selin .... assistant to the producer
Matti Sävikari .... military equipment
Ulla Virtanen .... production coordinator: Finland
Pamela Walshe .... script supervisor
Steve Weissman .... story editor
Eric Ahlstrand .... thanks (as Erik Ahlstrand)
Jukka Mäkelä .... thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
97 min | Germany:85 min | USA:95 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Finland:K-15 (2006) | Finland:K-16 (cut) (1989) | Finland:K-16 (cut) (1986) | Finland:(Banned) (original rating) (1986) | Iceland:16 | Norway:18 | Norway:16 (theatrical rating) | South Korea:15 | Sweden:15 | UK:18 (cut) | USA:R | West Germany:18 (BPjM restricted)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Chuck Norris was cast as Savoy but had to back out when filming was delayed.See more »
Interrogator:[while torturing Mitch] We really do have all the time in the world.See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in The Catch (2007)See more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
6 out of 13 people found the following review useful.
Worth slowing down while passing this car wreck, 2 December 2007
Author: bk-87668 from Finland

A "first movie" for a director is often quite interesting to watch. Sometimes the movie is excellent, sometimes full of film student stuff and pretentious tricks and usually tries too hard with too little. Born American is of the third variety.

The story follows three guys who are vacationing in Finland and cross over the border to the Soviet Union. Guess if the Soviets are depicted as interesting characters or something else (hint: this movie was made in the 1980s)? Anyway, things start exploding (often with the same sound effect). Also the Russians prove to be evil etc. Which is sort of interesting considering there was some tendency to self-censoring in Finland towards these kinds of things.

The plot is actually quite ridiculous because it goes way over the top at one point. It really feels like they had made the movie up to that point and they noticed they have way more money left so they added more things - or bought some of that new crack-cocaine. Some twists really made me laugh out loud in their outlandishness or how cliché they were.

Actually, if this movie starred Chuck Norris, for whom it originally was planned, it would be quite well known after that Chuck Norris revival fad. Now it's just a curiosity for anyone interested. As a Finn, I'm ashamed of this movie by Renny Harlin (he DID make a few good movies, though. I still like you, Renny). Ashamed and also proud, few countries have something unifying like this that people all around the world can laugh at.

The bottom line: DIY MST3K.

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