7.5/10
17,972
196 user 44 critic

Local Hero (1983)

An American oil company sends a man to Scotland to buy up an entire village where they want to build a refinery. But things don't go as expected.

Director:

Bill Forsyth

Writer:

Bill Forsyth
Reviews
Popularity
2,157 ( 4,599)

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From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 3 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Burt Lancaster ... Felix Happer
Peter Riegert ... Mac
Fulton Mackay ... Ben
Denis Lawson ... Urquhart
Norman Chancer Norman Chancer ... Moritz
Peter Capaldi ... Oldsen
Rikki Fulton Rikki Fulton ... Geddes
Alex Norton ... Watt
Jenny Seagrove ... Marina
Jennifer Black Jennifer Black ... Stella
Christopher Rozycki Christopher Rozycki ... Victor
Gyearbuor Asante Gyearbuor Asante ... Rev Macpherson (as Christopher Asante)
John M. Jackson ... Cal (as John Jackson)
Dan Ammerman ... Donaldson
Tam Dean Burn Tam Dean Burn ... Roddy
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Storyline

Oil billionaire Happer sends Mac to a remote Scottish village to secure the property rights for an oil refinery they want to build. Mac teams up with Danny and starts the negotiations, the locals are keen to get their hands on the 'Silver Dollar' and can't believe their luck. However, a local hermit and beach scavenger, Ben Knox, lives in a shack on the crucial beach which he also owns. Happer is more interested in the Northern Lights and Danny in a surreal girl with webbed feet, Marina. Mac is used to a Houston office with fax machines but is forced to negotiate on Bens terms. Written by Matthew Stanfield <mattst@cogs.susx.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

oil | beach | shack | village | scotland | See All (76) »

Taglines:

A beautiful coastline... A rich oil man wants to develop it. A poor beach bum wants to live on it. An entire town wants to profit by it. And a real-live mermaid wants to save it... Only one of them will get their way.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | Russian | Japanese

Release Date:

18 February 1983 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A kisvárosi hõs See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$23,567, 21 February 1983, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$5,895,761
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Mac's apartment building in Houston is The Willowick located at 2200 Willowick Road. When he walks outside at the end of the film, you can initially see past River Oaks to Downtown in the distance, followed by Lamar Tower, a set of buildings in Greenway Plaza and the AT&T building further down Willowick. While the film portrays the location as being heavily urban, in reality it was and remains mostly residential. See more »

Goofs

Marina and Danny are looking at what Marina says are grey seals but which are Californian fur seals, which aren't native to Scotland. See more »

Quotes

Oldsen: [referring to the grey seals] Sailors used to think they were mermaids, yeah?
Marina: [gives him a sharp look] Aye, they did. They were wrong.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Death Wish 4: The Crackdown (1987) See more »

Soundtracks

The Ceilidh: Louis' Favourite/Billy's Tune
Written by Mark Knopfler
Performed by the Acetones
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A simply beautiful movie
13 October 1998 | by Dave-79See all my reviews

I first saw this film in 1985 only because I had heard that Mark Knopfler did the soundtrack. After watching Local Hero, however, I was ready to pack my bags and move to a picturesque seaside village on the coast of Scottland. I fell in love with this movie. There is subtle humor, gorgeous scenery, a great story, and memorable characters. When the TV show Northern Exposure came out, I was amazed at the similarities between the show and Local Hero. An American professional accustomed to fast paced city living finds himself in a quirky town in the middle of nowhere. Even the resemblance of Peter Riegert playing Mac and Rob Morrow as Fleishman is striking. But when the episode of Northern Exposure aired where the famous Russian comes to town and performs in the local bar while the female store owner swoons, I nearly laughed myself off the couch. There was an identical scene in Local Hero. Local Hero captured a certain magic and mystery; haunting and poetic while remaining lighthearted and warming. One could not blame the creators of Northern Exposure for wanting to capture that same magic, but they could have been just a little more original. I love Bill Forsythe's movies. He is truly a master of the simple movie that tells a terrific story. Less is more. Also, Mark Knopfler delivers some of his finest music ever.


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