Best Movies by Farr
The Deer Hunter Poster
Released Runtime Category
1978 183 War, The Essentials
Director Language
Michael Cimino English
Robert De Niro, Meryl Streep, Christopher Walken, John Savage, John Cazale

The Deer Hunter

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What's it About

When we first meet three young steelworkers from Western Pennsylvania — Michael (De Niro), Steven (Savage), and Nick (Walken) — the men, friends since childhood, are celebrating Steven's marriage, while Mike and Nick take turns flirting with Linda (Streep). Then, all too abruptly, the trio gets shipped over to Vietnam for active duty. Soon they are captured by the Vietcong and are forced to endure the misery and torture of a North Vietnamese POW camp. Though eventually they manage to escape, none are home free yet.

Why we love it

Solid Vietnam films abound, but few pack the wallop of this highly intense, disturbing feature from then-newcomer Michael Cimino. Beyond the graphic scenes of the group's inhuman, unbearable captivity, the film shakes us up even more in the aftermath, as the stalwart Michael goes searching for his old friends, a perilous and selfless act of love and loyalty. This gut- and heart-wrenching feature won Best Picture, Director, Screenplay, and Supporting Actor Oscars (the last for Walken, who is unforgettable.) Streep also got her first nod for this. One of the all-time champs, but definitely not for the squeamish.

BEST MOVIES BY FARR is your personal guide to great movies to rent, stream, or buy; to watch at home or on-the-go. Led by film advocate John Farr, the Best Movies by Farr team works as a "quality filter" for the discerning moviegoer. Every day, we bring you the best of the best, the fantastic familiar films and hidden gems, to answer that age-old question: "What should we watch tonight?"