6.4/10
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122 user 61 critic

Northfork (2003)

PG-13 | | Drama, Fantasy | 1 August 2003 (USA)
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ON DISC
Set in 1955, the residents of a small Montana community are forced to move their homes to make way for a new dam.

Director:

Michael Polish
3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Woods ... Walter O'Brien
Nick Nolte ... Father Harlan
Douglas Sebern ... Mayor
Claire Forlani ... Mrs. Hadfield
Duel Farnes ... Irwin
Mark Polish ... Willis O'Brien
Daryl Hannah ... Flower Hercules
Graham Beckel ... Marvin
Josh Barker Josh Barker ... Matt (as Joshuin Barker)
Peter Coyote ... Eddie
Jon Gries ... Arnold
Rick Overton ... Rudolph
Robin Sachs ... Cup of Tea
Ben Foster ... Cod
Anthony Edwards ... Happy
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Storyline

In a near-empty Northfork orphanage, Father Harlan gently tends to Irwin, an eight-year-old who lies between a dream state and death. As orphanage caretaker Harlan reads aloud about Northfork's years-ago forced evacuation to make way for a hydro-electric dam, Irwin's imagination takes flight. While a team of six men evacuate the last remaining citizens of the town, Irwin, too, invents a cast of characters to prepare himself for his own evacuation. (the above states the caretaker - who is actually the priest - is reading about a years-ago evacuation. In the movie, the evacuation is taking place as the boy lays dying!) Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief sexuality | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 August 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Antistasi mehris eshaton See more »

Filming Locations:

Augusta, Montana, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,900,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$61,481, 13 July 2003, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$1,420,578, 28 December 2003
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Mr Stalling says that he is waiting for a sign from God, when Walter O'Brien visits him at the ark. Walter imparts a tale about when the water has risen, men will come by in a boat to take him and the two Mrs Stallings's to safety. They will not go, because they are waiting for a sign and they will drown. And God will say, I sent you a boat, what more did you want? This story also appears in the The West Wing season one episode "Take This Sabbath Day" and is told by the Karl Malden character, Father Thomas Cavanaugh. See more »

Goofs

When the six committee members get out of their three cars at the dam, we hear eight doors slam. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Walter: [reading a letter] To the loving O'Brien family. It has been brought to our attention that the remains of a Mrs. Patricia O'Brien have yet to be excavated. Please make arrangements immediately.
See more »

Crazy Credits

John Tuell special thanks See more »

Connections

Follows Twin Falls Idaho (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Just a Closer Walk with Thee
(1959)
Performed by Patsy Cline
Traditional
Arranged by W.S. Stevenson (1959) (a pseudonym of William A. 'Bill' McCall)
Courtesy of Sony/ATV Acuff-Rose Music
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User Reviews

 
Refreshing
11 January 2004 | by robertllrSee all my reviews

It's a shame this movie is rated PG 13--it is really quite suitable for anyone--though young kids might not follow it too well.

It belongs to that wonderful genre of serio-comic ghost/angel stories that would have to include everything from Capra's "It's A Wonderful Life" to Wenders's "Wings of Desire."

The photography is stunning, the acting first rate, and--wonder of wonders--the tone is uplifting.

My only criticism is that there is not much ambiguity in the film. The two interwoven stories seem intriguingly mysterious at first; but they resolve themselves a little too nicely for my taste. As the director points out in his commentary on the DVD, all the ingredients of Irwin's story are on his bedside table. The symbolism is just a trifle too pat for me.

But what a lark! My favorite scene has to be when the relocation team tries to get breakfast at a diner. This is practically theatrical in its magic--a tour de force of witty acting--subtle, playful, and positively rhythmic--coupled with striking cinematography and an acute eye for the grotesque.

"Northfork" is funny, touching, gorgeous to look at, magical (with the above reservations) and has not one single car-chase.

An easy nine stars.


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