7.1/10
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39 user 2 critic

The Wave (1981)

An experiment in an American High School where students learn how easy it is to be seduced by the same social forces which led to the horrors of Nazi Germany. Based on a true story.

Director:

Alexander Grasshoff (as Alex Grasshoff)

Writers:

Johnny Dawkins (teleplay by), Ron Jones (based on a short story by)
Reviews
Won 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bruce Davison ... Ben Ross
Lori Lethin ... Lauree
John Putch ... David
Johnny Doran Johnny Doran ... Robert
Pasha Gray Pasha Gray ... Amy
Wesley Pfenning Wesley Pfenning ... Christy Ross (as Wesley Ann Pfenning)
Marc Copage ... Eric
Robert DeLapp Robert DeLapp
Matthew Dunn Matthew Dunn
Frank Lloyd Frank Lloyd
Danny Marmolejo Danny Marmolejo
Michael Pasternak ... Peter
Teri Ralston Teri Ralston ... Mrs. Saunders
Jamie Rose ... Andrea
Larry Keith Larry Keith ... Mr. Saunders
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Storyline

To explain to his students the atmosphere in the 1930's Nazi Germany, history teacher Burt Ross initiates a daring experiment. He declares himself leader of a new movement, called 'The Wave'. Inspired, he proclaims ideas about Power, Discipline and Superiority. His students are strikingly willing to follow him. Soon the entire school is under the spell of 'The Wave'. Anyone who refuses to be a part of the Movement, faces threats or worse. Ross himself gets carried away by his own experiment. Or has it turned into something more than an experiment? A climax is unavoidable, resulting in a hard lesson for both Ross and his students... Written by Diederik B.A. Rep

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

TV-G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Originally produced as an ABC Afterschool Special, the network chose to instead debut this film in prime time as part of its 'ABC Theater for Young Americans' series. See more »

Quotes

Ben Ross: [voiceover] Yes I remember the Wave, it was one of the most frightening classroom experiences I ever had. It all started when we were studying Nazi Germany.
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Connections

Edited into ABC Afterschool Specials: The Wave (1983) See more »

User Reviews

Interesting Short
30 January 2003 | by karadjordjevicSee all my reviews

I just watched this in my Social Psychology class and I was impressed even though the film is a bit melo-dramatic. Great if you want to see how easy it is to influence young people, those without friends and to see how easy it was for German's to grow under the influence of Nazi Germany.

This kind of thing can happen at any time, and the movie shows just how easy it is.

Doing a study for psychology, then this is a good film to watch


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 October 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Wave See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

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