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A River Runs Through It (1992)

PG | | Drama | 30 October 1992 (USA)
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The story about two sons of a stern minister -- one reserved, one rebellious -- growing up in rural Montana while devoted to fly fishing.

Director:

Robert Redford

Writers:

Norman Maclean (story), Richard Friedenberg (screenplay)
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Popularity
3,445 ( 401)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Craig Sheffer ... Norman Maclean
Brad Pitt ... Paul Maclean
Tom Skerritt ... Rev. Maclean
Brenda Blethyn ... Mrs. Maclean
Emily Lloyd ... Jessie Burns
Edie McClurg ... Mrs. Burns
Stephen Shellen ... Neal Burns
Vann Gravage Vann Gravage ... Young Paul
Nicole Burdette Nicole Burdette ... Mabel
Susan Traylor ... Rawhide
Michael Cudlitz ... Chub
Rob Cox ... Conroy
Buck Simmonds Buck Simmonds ... Humph
Fred Oakland Fred Oakland ... Mr. Burns
David Creamer David Creamer ... Ken Burns
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Storyline

The Maclean brothers, Paul and Norman, live a relatively idyllic life in rural Montana, spending much of their time fly fishing. The sons of a minister, the boys eventually part company when Norman moves east to attend college, leaving his rebellious brother to find trouble back home. When Norman finally returns, the siblings resume their fishing outings, and assess both where they've been and where they're going. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Story of an American Family.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for momentary nudity, and some language in a family drama | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 October 1992 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A River Runs Through It See more »

Filming Locations:

Bozeman, Montana, USA See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$43,440,294
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

River Phoenix auditioned to play Paul Maclean. See more »

Goofs

The scene where Paul is fighting the big fish his hat is on while being submerged, going down stream through rough water and finally landing the fish. However, in the following immediate scene when he poses for Norman to take a picture of him holding the big fish his hat is missing. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Older Norman: [narrating] Long ago, when I was a young man, my father said to me, "Norman, you like to write stories." And I said "Yes, I do." Then he said, "Someday, when you're ready you might tell our family story. Only then will you understand what happened and why."
See more »

Crazy Credits

The scenes on the Blackfoot River were actually shot on the Madison and other rivers around the Bozeman and Livingston areas. The "Big Blackfoot" has already become too polluted and populated to provide the image the scene required. See more »

Alternate Versions

The US DVD has different composer credits for the widescreen/pan & scan version. The widescreen version lists Elmer Bernstein (whose score was rejected) while the pan & scan version lists 'Mark Isham' (who replaced Bernstein). See more »

Connections

Referenced in Grace Under Fire: A River Runs Through Him (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

The Sheik of Araby'
Written by Harry B. Smith, Ted Snyder and Francis Wheeler
Used by Permission of
Mills Music Corp, Inc. / Jerry Vogel Music Co.
Ted Snyder Music Co. / Bienstock Publishing Co., on behalf of Redwood Music Ltd.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The 'It' of the title can be replaced by so many things. A place, a community or life itself.
21 August 2004 | by heb4_16See all my reviews

One of the things about the film that warmed my heart strings was that dry fly fishing was a major part of the scene. I have occasionally carried out my times of dry fly fishing, having tied my own flies, and being accompanied by my brother and my father we spend a day on one river or another seeking to tempt the ever elusive Brown Trout to rise and take the fly that has been offered to them.

When we had occasions like this any differences between us disappeared and any of the pressures of the world melted away to be replaced by the glory of being absorbed in the activity and the surroundings of the place we were in.

This was one of the amazing things that was portrayed to me in the film as the minister and his two sons, Norman and Pauly carried out the ritual. For there is something ritualistic about fly fishing as there is something ritualistic about so many pastimes. You can't just start casting your fishing line and hope for the best. You have to attune yourself to the place you are in, you have to scan the surface of the water considering how it is flowing and where the best point might be to place your fly and, depending on your skill level, you might even get your fly to land there long enough for a fish to take note of it and strike. The 'Art of Fly-fishing' was directed and represented so well that they themselves can be classified as artists.

The title for the film could not be more aptly chosen, for the river did in fact run through the life of father and two sons. This film however spreads itself broader than the family and community in Montana, by the the Blackfoot river, where the film is played out. It has the capacity to draw you in, to enthrall you, to capture you, as the history of the family, community and period is unfolded. The Story told is not just a family history, but a history of Life. What may be classified as a 'River of Life'


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