7.1/10
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113 user 44 critic

River's Edge (1986)

R | | Crime, Drama | 8 May 1987 (USA)
A high school slacker commits a shocking act and proceeds to let his friends in on the secret. However, the friends' reaction is almost as ambiguous and perplexing as the crime itself.

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4 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Clarissa (as Ione Skye Leitch)
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Tim (as Joshua Miller)
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Josh Richman ...
Phillip Brock ...
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Jim
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Tammy Smith ...
Kim
...
Jamie
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Storyline

A group of high school friends must come to terms with the fact that one of them, Samson, killed another, Jamie. Reactions vary, as Layne is intent on protecting Samson and smuggling him out of the state, while others think it's best to go to the police. Matt's tough little brother also finds out about the body and no one knows quite how the police will learn about the murder or who will be blamed for it. Written by Christine Sai-Halasz <sai@mit.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The most controversial film you will see this year.

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 May 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

River's Edge  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,900,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$4,600,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(opening sequence)| (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Neal Jimenez based the characters on friends he went to school with in Sacramento, California See more »

Goofs

In the opening of the movie, the younger brother throws his sister's doll off a bridge. We see a completely different doll hit the water below. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Checker: [points at legal age sign]
Samson: That's a real nice sign, how much.
Checker: I have to see ID.
Samson: I left it at home. How much?
Checker: I'm not going to sell you this unless you show me ID.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Adjust Your Tracking (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm Gonna Miss You
Written and Performed by Hank Ballard
See more »

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User Reviews

Chilling and effective examination of alienation and ambivalence
5 January 1999 | by (Fargo, North Dakota) – See all my reviews

Tim Hunter made a masterful film in River's Edge, one of the most serious and thoughtful dramatic studies of teenage life I have ever seen. So many elements of the film have a cult following (chief among them the performances of Crispin Glover as Layne and Dennis Hopper as Feck) that I will comment on my own personal favorite moment: the harrowing sex scene between Matt (Keanu Reeves) and Clarissa (Ione Skye). Entwined in sleeping bags with a six pack while police search for their good friend, the two try to find respite while the overwhelming events of the day coil into a vacuum of solitude and silence experienced by children who have sex without knowing each other or themselves. Some will argue that Hunter is heavy-handed with the close association of sex and death, but to see Matt writhe helplessly under Clarissa while elsewhere John (Daniel Roebuck) describes to Feck what it was like to strangle his girlfriend always sends chills up and down my spine.


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