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|Index||106 reviews in total|
41 out of 53 people found the following review useful:
One of the saddest, most shocking and realistic stories you may ever see., 1 February 2004
Author: triple8 from Conn
River's edge is not a PLEASANT film to watch but it is an incredible one. Having viewed it many years ago I truly think it would still have the ability to shock were it to be re released or remade or something. Perhaps no movie ever made has captured the essense of young suburban inertia like this distrubing frightening movie. Given that this is based on a true story it is even more disturbing. Very well acted and just UNPLEASANT at many times to watch but also a little known masterpiece and a truely important film. Should be a mandatory to watch shown nationwide in all highschools. Fantastic.
22 out of 26 people found the following review useful:
A Study in Interactive Psychology, 15 August 2003
Author: bluzman from United States
I just saw this movie for the second time. I first saw it back in the
mid-90's as a Vanguard Video selection. It has retained it
It is interesting from several aspects. One is that it is based on a true story. Two is it is a launching pad for two interesting actors: Keanu Reeves and Crispin Glover. And three, it has Dennis Hopper in one of his better social misfit/psychotic character roles.
The movie is also a study in the way people act in different settings. You have characters in one-on-one, family, peer group, school, general society settings, etc. The story does well in demonstrating how a person will act in each setting.
I wish I could find the details of the actual murder to compare to the movie. I saw a short bit that indicated it occurred in California and that several schoolmates were taken to view the corpse.
This is a good choice for a rainy night video rental. Be prepared to feel unsettled at the end.
20 out of 23 people found the following review useful:
Chilling and effective examination of alienation and ambivalence, 5 January 1999
Author: pooch-8 from Fargo, North Dakota
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.
23 out of 30 people found the following review useful:
Teenage apathy at its extreme. (spoilers), 9 December 2004
Author: Pepper Anne from Orlando, Florida
Less Than Zero could have been the 80s movie that reveals teenage
apathy in its most extreme form had they actually stuck to the damn
book. But, where they hadn't, this movie presents does the job, and
leaves you with the creepiest feeling when its all over in ways not
done until the late nineties with Larry Clark's movies 'Kids' and
Societal outcast teens are faced with a rather curious dilemma (they don't treat it much like one) when their estranged friend (Daniel Roebuck) boasts to them that he killed a teenage girl near the river's edge in their suburban town. Keanu Reeves may be the only civilized character among the bunch, the only one willing to exhibit any sort of conscience, anyway, while the others either don't do anything about the girl's death or want to help their friend hide the body.
I don't know who is more sick in this film--Crispin Glover--who becomes nearly obsessed and quite paternal in trying to protect the friend and hide the crime by smuggling him out of the state. Dennis Hopper, an on-edge drug dealer (who clings to a female blowup doll) that befriends the teens (as a dealer, of course) and suddenly becomes involved in the events. Or, Josh Miller, who plays Reeve's little brother, Tim. He appears to be the most apathetic of them all, at least until his emotional breakdown at the end. It is definitely not peppy 80s teen fare, obviously. And certainly makes the point strikingly clear about the serious detachment these kids deal with (despite a bizarre series of events) thanks to many great performances all around (even Reeves proved some acting capability).
Help yourself to a comedy to recover if it rocks you too hard.
25 out of 37 people found the following review useful:
Good movie!, 30 May 2004
Author: MooVChic84 from Georgia
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I just watched "River's Edge" for the very first time tonight and I couldn't believe how good it was! I had heard about Crispin Glover's performance in this movie and, being a recent fan of his, I had to see it. I was truly amazed. He is a very talented actor. I had seen him in the movie "Willard" and that was what got me interested in him. I loved his wild hand gestures and his sudden outbursts. His rapid speeches and the way his eyes would grow wide during them were quite amusing. He played his character Layne as if he were him. Very brilliant. But I also liked the rest of the cast. Daniel Roebuck's character as John, the boy who strangles his girlfriend for no apparent reason, was to me, the most disturbing performance of this film. He felt no remorse for the horrible crime he committed. When he looked at the corpse his eyes were expressionless. It was haunting to see how emotionless he was. Gripping. Keanu Reeves was great. In my opinion, he was the only one of the gang who was hurt by the murder. I don't think he actually knew Jamie (the victim) but he was truly haunted by the sight of the corpse. He told Clarissa (Ione Skye) right before they made love that the image of the body was still frozen in his mind. That would happen to me too! I also found Dennis Hopper's performance as Feck very brilliant. He was a killer too but he was sorry for what he had done. I was shocked when he killed John. John had told him the whole story about Jamie's murder and Feck knew John had to pay for what he had done. Very moving. I really found the performances of the young children very brilliant as well. Joshua Miller's character as Tim will probably scare the living daylights out of you. I couldn't believe how loveless he was! And as one person commented on this board, it is disturbing to think how there are actually 12 year olds out there like that! But "River's Edge" is a very good movie and should be viewed by any movie fan. Thanks for reading my review!
23 out of 34 people found the following review useful:
Disturbing Creepy 80's apathy!, 7 July 2004
Author: shepardjessica from sparks, nevada
This film is one of the best of 1986 with creepy, yet intriguing
performances from Crispin Glover and Dennis Hopper! The Reagan years were
pretty bleak for a lot of people, not just teenagers, but this flick really
captured the desperation and despair. Well-directed with great script
(apparently based on a true story), I don't really see any weaknesses in
this. The opening shot was brilliant.
Keanu Reeves was decent for a change and Miss Skye was right on the money. Hopper had three other great performances that same year (Blue Velvet, Texas Chainsaw II, and Hoosiers). I imagine this has a cult following and I wonder how this picture would fare if it was re-released. Super stuff!
15 out of 19 people found the following review useful:
An important film about apathy, 28 June 2004
Author: 4-Kane from Arlington, MA
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I once read Roger Ebert's review of River's Edge. Then years later, I read
it again, and again...and again. I became increasingly curious about this
movie since it was inspired by an actual murder case. However, it wasn't
until early 2004 when I finally rented the movie, and watched it for the
very first time. I watched it again a few weeks later, after buying a copy
of it on DVD.
The movie is not a docudrama. It is just a fictional story whose plot was inspired by a real-life murder. It was the 1981 murder of Marcy Conrad, who was killed by Anthony Jacques Broussard. Broussard bragged about the crime to his high school friends, and brought them over to the ravine to view the corpse. The disturbing thing about the case was that the none of the kids, who learned about Broussard's crime, went to the police. That's what River's Edge is all about: teenagers deciding to protect their friend, in lieu of reporting his misdeed.
I recommend River's Edge. It is a young adult drama that stands out in my mind, and whenever I feel compelled to talk about it, I do so. River's Edge is a story that shows just how apathetic some people can be.
10 out of 11 people found the following review useful:
This was considered radical when it first came out..., 15 September 2006
Author: MarieGabrielle from United States
I can remember a college professor commenting as to how disturbing this
film was, reflecting the apathy of adolescents (this was before
In a way, most of us are products of the same consumer culture; these high school kids spend their time drinking, getting high and wondering what to do about the body left on a riverbank.
What would they do today? Would things be different?. Some very important questions. There are some excellent scenes with Keanu Reeves, and the dysfunctional family he lives with; his 11 year old brother going out to get wasted; the mother has no idea what to do- spends her time drinking with her boyfriend.
This film was a bit before its time in that it addresses the problems in lower class American society; these kids had no outlet; what is available for them in this dirt-water town? . All in all a few interesting social commentaries are presented, and there are no solutions. 9/10.
11 out of 15 people found the following review useful:
Disturbing, compelling movie. Possible spoilers., 15 May 2004
Author: Whitefrosty from New Zealand
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I have seen this movie a number of times and find it very compelling
and sad. The lack of real emotion from most of the characters is very
disturbing. They seem empty, hopeless. The story is based on a real
A teenage girl is murdered by her boyfriend for no obvious reason - apparently he just felt like it. Then he boasts about it to his friends and as they don't believe him he takes them to view the body - a number of times. No one reports the murder. There are two strong leads - Keanu Reeves and Crispen Glover - Crispen Glovers character is seriously annoying.
Keanu's character Matt appears to be the only one who has a sense of right and wrong. This is Keanu at his best - a flawless performance and very believable - anyone who thinks this man can't act should watch this movie. Matt's little brother is almost the most disturbing character in the movie. Only twelve and no compassion or love factor in his life. It is very sad to think there are kids out there like this. It really makes you grateful for what you have. 9/10.
6 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
Roebuck really makes this movie..., 25 April 2006
Author: sporter3_99 from United States
Not to take away from anyone else, especially the writer Jimenez and
the director Hunter, and the high school teacher and a lot of other
people that make this movie really good, but I have to say I found
Daniel Roebuck's performance completely riveting. He should have been
nominated for it. He's big and brutal but also young and self-pitying
and yet careless about his own fate. Those gestures, the tossing of
beer cans and breaking into the ammo shop. Really well done.
That scene w/Hopper and the doll by the riverbank was one of the better moments of cinema I've seen in a long, long time. Why was this movie so under the radar compared to other 80's movies? That's what I want someone on this board to answer. The critics kind of mystify me, I guess. I agree with a lot of the postings here that this movie is underrated. Buy why?
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