6 user 3 critic

Blue River (1995)

PG-13 | | Drama | TV Movie 21 November 1995
The stormy relationship of a young teenage boy with his troubled older brother is told in an extended flashback segment bookended by what happens when the two meet again fifteen years later... See full summary »


Larry Elikann


Ethan Canin (novel), Maria Nation (teleplay)

On Disc

at Amazon


Learn more

More Like This 

Thriller | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.1/10 X  

A wife is caught in a web of sex and violence.

Director: Jack N. Green
Stars: Sam Elliott, Jamie Kennedy, Carlton Elizabeth
Dog Watch (Video 1997)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

A San Francisco, California detective (Sam Elliott) goes wild when he discovers his partner dead and the presumed culprit standing over him. After beating the man to death, he comes to his ... See full summary »

Director: John Langley
Stars: Sam Elliott, Esai Morales, Paul Sorvino
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

In 1919, a cocky sophomore in the forest service has to learn life the hard way.

Director: John Kent Harrison
Stars: Sam Elliott, Jerry O'Connell, Ricky Jay
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

"From personal heartbreak to the epic fight for liberation, the glory of the Old West is captured in this grand life story of Sam Houston, the man whose bravery and vision led to the creation of Texas." -- from back of box

Director: Peter Levin
Stars: Sam Elliott, Claudia Christian, Devon Ericson
The Desperate Trail (Video 1994)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

After years of suffering under her beating husband, Sarah decides to no longer take any humiliation or battery, and kills him. For that, Marshal Speakes, her father-in-law, sentences her to... See full summary »

Director: P.J. Pesce
Stars: Sam Elliott, Craig Sheffer, Linda Fiorentino
Action | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

In a period when many thought that "the only good Indian is a dead Indian," Chief Joseph and the Nez Perce won the admiration of the American public.

Director: Richard T. Heffron
Stars: James Whitmore, Sam Elliott, Ned Romero
Woman Undone (TV Movie 1996)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

Terri Hansen is discovered in the desert beside the blackened husk of her car which contains the charred corpse of her husband. When forensic evidence makes her out to be her husband's ... See full summary »

Director: Evelyn Purcell
Stars: Mary McDonnell, Randy Quaid, Sam Elliott
Evel Knievel (TV Movie 1974)
Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Pilot for an adventure and comedy series starring Sam Elliott as the title character and Gary Barton as his sidekick. In the pilot, Evel Knievel must compete against a female motorcycle daredevil.

Director: Michael O'Herlihy
Stars: Sam Elliott, Noble Willingham, Gary Barton
The Blue Lightning (TV Movie 1986)
Action | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

A private investigator (Sam Elliott) battles a criminal (Robert Culp) in the Australian outback for the possession of a priceless opal in this all-out action flick.

Director: Lee Philips
Stars: Sam Elliott, Rebecca Gilling, John Meillon
The Final Cut (1995)
Action | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A mysterious bomber is planting explosive devices in Seattle, Washington. Since their quality takes too big a toll amongst Seattle Police bomb experts, John Pierce, former head of the Bomb ... See full summary »

Director: Roger Christian
Stars: Sam Elliott, Charles Martin Smith, Kelly Benson
You Know My Name (TV Movie 1999)
Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Fact-based biography of early film Producer and Director Bill Tilghman (Sam Elliott). Tilghman was a real-life cowboy, who rode with the Earps and faced down countless bad guys. When he ... See full summary »

Director: John Kent Harrison
Stars: Sam Elliott, Arliss Howard, Carolyn McCormick
Action | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A cop turned private investigator Brita Burrows, a retiring booze-prone Palm Springs cop Cutter, a young hotheaded cop Hareem, and a guilt-ridden disgraced ex-cop Graves, have to follow a client's husband and find a mysterious Mexican.

Director: Gary Nelson
Stars: Sam Elliott, Teri Garr, Thomas Haden Church


Cast overview, first billed only:
Jerry O'Connell ... Lawrence Sellars
Nick Stahl ... Young Edward
Neal McDonough ... Edward Sellars
Jean Marie Barnwell Jean Marie Barnwell ... Darienne
Patrick Renna ... Zoltan
Sam Elliott ... Henry Howland
Susan Dey ... Mrs. Sellers
Rebecca Rogers ... Elizabeth
Lorri Lindberg Lorri Lindberg ... Mrs. Silver
Merritt Wever ... Lottie
Cara Jedell ... Anita Candle
Catherine Shaffner Catherine Shaffner ... Mrs. Morris
David Cutting David Cutting ... Jonathan
Chris Blackwelder Chris Blackwelder ... Kurt
Joanna Canton ... Stacy


The stormy relationship of a young teenage boy with his troubled older brother is told in an extended flashback segment bookended by what happens when the two meet again fifteen years later. Edward is a young teen living in a family the father abandoned years before and where the mother has become a Christian fundamentalist and courts a self-righteous school principal. In this setting, Edward tries to come to grips with his feelings towards the brother he both loves and fears, while struggling to protect his family and others from his brother's wrath. Written by Sean Parlaman <seanpar@efn.org>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The quietest towns always hide the ugliest secrets.




PG-13 | See all certifications »






Release Date:

21 November 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Río azul See more »

Filming Locations:

Wilmington, North Carolina, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Stahl Beats O'Connell By a Hair
2 February 2005 | by rava-1See all my reviews

Blue River has many things going for it and a few that detract from its potency. On the plus side, it features a literate script, decent direction and some fine acting. On the down side, it has some horrible hair and prosthetic make up and Jerry O'Connell.

Let's start with the worst -- Jerry O'Connell's performance... or maybe his hair piece...no, the acting wins out by a ... oh, I'm not going to say it.. Having only seen O'Connell in Stand By Me, where his character is rather endearing, his hammy overacting here came as quite a jarring surprise. One can almost hear O'Connell thinking, "I am an Actor!" every time he is on screen. He telegraphs every thought, every move, of his character, Lawrence, turning each into a "special moment." It doesn't help that his character is supposed to be mercurial and edgy, giving him an excuse to over emote. Check him out as he swills a beer and dramatically dashes the plastic cup to the ground. It is difficult not to laugh.

On the up side here is Nick Stahl's performance. Seeing these actors as a foil for each other only serves to highlight Stahl's talent all the more. Where O'Connell's artificiality is irritating, Stahl's naturalness is inspiring. He manages to take a much less meaty character than O'Connell's and imbue him with a depth and emotional reality that leaves a lasting impression. In the intense confrontations between the two brothers, Stahl's acting is the emotional center. As his character begins to see the cracks in his brother's lies, he allows the anger and dismay to naturally shine through.

Overall, the supporting actors here do a fine job. The scenes between Stahl's character and that played by Patrick Renna are great. Renna builds a complex and compelling youth whose own destructive nature mirrors that of Lawrence. Susan Dey looks great here in her fragile kookiness, but one gets the feeling that some of her scenes may have been cut out, leaving her character a bit underdeveloped. This is even more true for Sam Elliott, playing the flawed Henry Howland well, yet ultimately remaining flat. As the younger sister, Jean Marie Barnwell was impressive in her few scenes and left me thinking I will keep my eyes open for her in the future.

Blue River is well worth seeing despite its flaws. One can't help wishing that this project had been financed as a film rather than a TV movie, since it has such a fine script and might have done well. See it for the decent performances and story .... or to giggle at O'Connell's very bad hair day.

10 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 6 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed