7.5/10
17,975
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)

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

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

Photos

Edit

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
Edit

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 »
Edit

Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | Russian | Japanese

Release Date:

18 February 1983 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A kisvárosi hõs See more »

Edit

Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$23,567, 21 February 1983, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$5,895,761
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The film's soundtrack scored by Mark Knopfler sold better than the movie itself. See more »

Goofs

Victor, who "has been coming here for years", and is very familiar with all of the townsfolk, is introduced to Ben (the morning after the ceilidh) as though a stranger (and even though Ben was present during Victor's song). See more »

Quotes

Urquhart: [bouncing on his bed] Oh boy, are we going to be rich!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Tayna chyornykh drozdov (1983) See more »

Soundtracks

Wild Theme
Written by Mark Knopfler
Performed by Mark Knopfler and Alan Clark
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
A Wonderful Wonderful Movie
27 January 2002 | by Paul-153See all my reviews

I really cannot praise Local Hero enough; it is simply one of the best films ever made and certainly, without any shadow of doubt, my number one favourite movie of all time. Fans of Ealing Comedy will relate to this film instantly. The humour is extremely subtle, going for the quirkiness of human behaviour rather than prefabricated belly-laughs. For example, the two farmers arguing which is the better vehicle for transporting winter lambs, Massarati or Rolls Royce. And the African preacher who has to explain that he's "not Scottish either" but still has the surname McPhearson. At first glance, the story of Local Hero is hardly one which would engage fevered interest. A big Texan oil company wants to buy a huge chunk of Scottish coastline and a representative is flown over to close the deal. Chosen because it's thought he is of Scottish origin, McIntyre (Peter Riegert) complains to a colleague that he could do the deal over the wires in an afternoon and that his parents chose the surname when they got off the boat from Hungary because they thought it sounded American. But what grabs the attention and is the fundamental beauty to the film is "Mac's" journey from a materialistic Texan yuppie to one who falls in love with the simple things of life and by the film's end, when Mac returns home, has been changed forever by his trip.

Mac plays his part very well from a character who depends on his expensive suits, his Porsche, quad hi-fi and personal health insurance to one who collects shells on a Scottish beach and drinks 40 year-old malt whisky in the bosom of the small community that he suddenly finds himself a part of. Burt Lancaster plays the wonderfully eccentric oil company CEO who is more concerned with dicovering a comet of his own than making millions of dollars. Then of course there is Denis Lawson as the estate agent / taxi driver / hotelier, Peter Capaldi as the bungling company trainee and Jenny Seagrove who prefers being underwater to life on land, along with all the various yokels and locals that give this film its very unique charm. And the plot twist? A fabulously subtle one-liner that gives the whole thing away. But of course, one cannot talk about this movie without mentioning the soundtrack. Many years ago I felt compelled to watch this movie because (being a big Dire Straits fan at the time) i had the soundtrack and was instantly hooked. Mark Knopfler does sterling work in adding musical flavour to the film. Lazy acoustic guitars match perfectly the breath-taking scenary that the director, Bill Forsyth, has captured of the Scottish Highlands. Overall, I would have no hesitation in recommending this film to people. Every recommendation I've made has been met with the same response: a gem of a movie that simply cannot be ignored. Local Hero will be my own personal number one for ever!

10/10


63 of 68 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 196 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed