7.1/10
14,232
119 user 50 critic

River's Edge (1986)

R | | Crime, Drama | 8 May 1987 (USA)
This is actually based on a true story that took place in Milpitas, CA in the mid 80's.

Director:

Tim Hunter

Writer:

Neal Jimenez
Reviews
Popularity
2,286 ( 1,378)

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4 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Crispin Glover ... Layne
Keanu Reeves ... Matt
Ione Skye ... Clarissa (as Ione Skye Leitch)
Daniel Roebuck ... Samson
Dennis Hopper ... Feck
Joshua John Miller ... Tim (as Joshua Miller)
Roxana Zal ... Maggie
Josh Richman Josh Richman ... Tony
Phillip Brock ... Mike
Tom Bower ... Bennett
Constance Forslund ... Madeleine
Leo Rossi ... Jim
Jim Metzler ... Mr. Burkewaite
Tammy Smith Tammy Smith ... Kim
Danyi Deats ... 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:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 May 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

River's Edge See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,900,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$4,600,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hemdale, Island See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Black and White (opening sequence)| Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Corey Haim was originally cast as Tim, but he got sick after the first day of production and had to be replaced. Joshua John Miller ended up playing this role. See more »

Goofs

When Layne and Samson are driving in the car together at night, the shadow of the rear-view mirror is visible on Samson's face. In the long shots, the shadow appears to have a cross hanging from it, but on the close-ups of Samson's face, there is no cross. 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 Fear of the Flesh: The Making of 'The Fly' (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Lethal Tendencies
Written by Stacy Anderson & David Stuart
Performed by Hallows Eve
See more »

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User Reviews

Chilling and effective examination of alienation and ambivalence
5 January 1999 | by pooch-8See 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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