Action / Crime / Drama / Romance / Thriller

Plot summary

Uploaded by: OTTO


Top cast

Kelly McGillis Photo
Kelly McGillis as Rachel
Viggo Mortensen Photo
Viggo Mortensen as Moses Hochleitner
Harrison Ford Photo
Harrison Ford as John Book
Lukas Haas Photo
Lukas Haas as Samuel
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
564.46 MB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 52 min
P/S 2 / 14
2.07 GB
English 5.1
23.976 fps
1 hr 52 min
P/S 2 / 30

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by bkoganbing9 / 10

The Terrible English World

When Harrison Ford is not playing Han Solo, Indiana Jones, or Jack Ryan he's done some other really outstanding films and Witness certainly ranks among the best. It's a wonderful drama about two worlds meeting over a homicide.

The film is seen through the eyes of its title character, young Lukas Haas who plays the Witness to a homicide. And it isn't some ordinary street crime either. While traveling to Baltimore from Amish country with his mother, Kelly McGillis, the little boy goes to the men's room in the 30th Street station in Philadelphia. There he witnesses two men kill an undercover Philly cop.

But there's a whole lot more to it than that, the story involves police corruption at the highest levels in the Philadelphia, PD. When Ford tries to shield McGillis and Haas, they are found out and Ford is nearly killed. He decides they are safer indeed back in their neighborhood where outsiders would really stand out.

It's quite a change for Ford as he adapts into the Amish world. And of course there's a growing attraction between Ford and McGillis.

Witness succeeds on every level it operates on, as a police drama, as a romance, as a thriller. The movie was shot in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania in the actual Amish country and in Philadelphia.

Witness was nominated for several Oscars including Best Picture, Best Actor for Harrison Ford, and Best Director for Peter Weir. It did win for Film Editing and for Original Screenplay. Original it is because I don't think the Pennsylvania Amish were ever the subject of a motion picture before.

You will also like Danny Glover and Josef Sommer as a pair of corrupt Philadelphia ranking police officials and Viggo Mortenson has a role as an Amish suitor for Kelly McGillis. McGillis herself loses the glamor for her part. Hard to believ the sexy flight instructor in Top Gun is the same woman.

Though Ford got the nomination in the acting category, the film really belongs to Lukas Haas. With minimal dialog and a set of expressions on his young face that conveys all, it's one of the best juvenile performances ever filmed.

Witness should not be missed, rent, tape it, buy the VHS or DVD, but definitely see this film.

Reviewed by MartinHafer8 / 10

Well worth seeing--unless you can't see it because of your religious values!

I am certainly no expert on the Amish (a name give which covers Old Order Mennonites, Conservative Mennonites, Hutterites, and Old German Baptist Brethren ) and I am sure this film would have bothered many of them had they been able to watch it--though the Amish, especially, would shun such modern contrivances as movies. The film was violent and showed a woman whose convictions suddenly vanished because of raging hormones--surely this might offend a few. I doubt if minor details would have offended (such as all the sexy Quaker guys had no beards!). But, despite these difficulties, Peter Weir did manage to direct a very compelling film.

The plot is very believable. I have spent tons of time in Philadelphia, so seeing the Amish walking about (especially at Reading Market downtown) is believable (these are generally the more liberal-minded Amish). And, a scene where a guy is brutally stabbed in a bathroom is very believable for Philly (I've personally witnessed 6 or 7 only this year alone). I am not sure, however, how much the Philadelphia Police Department appreciated the film, as it said that they were run by a group of evil racketeers.

An Amish woman (Kelly McGillis) takes her son on a train trip to Baltimore to see her sister. However, at the train station, the boy just happens to be in the bathroom where a cold-blooded murder of an undercover cop occurs. The boy is smart, however, and hides---and manages to be the only witness to the slaying. When the police investigate, the Captain (Harrison Ford) takes the case personally (is this realistic?) and uses the kid to try to track down one of the killers who he can identify. However, when it turns out that the killer is a police lieutenant (Danny Glover),there is a problem--as the problem turns out to be a lot bigger and the Chief is clearly part of a much deeper conspiracy. So what is Ford to do now that he realizes that he and the boy are both about to be killed to protect this criminal empire? Yep, he and the kid and the hot mom head back to Lancaster County--to the so-called 'Amish Country' to hide out among the good, honest folk.

The film gets kudos for very good acting, a nicely relaxed film style and a great story with a very exciting ending. Even with the gratuitous scenes of McGillis' breasts (again, had the Amish been able to see the film, they would NOT have been amused),it is a case of excellent story-telling. Compelling throughout and it works best for me because of how they ended the thing--without a cop-out perfect ending like you'd expect from many Hollywood productions.

Reviewed by Leofwine_draca9 / 10

Poignant and unexpectedly moving

One of the most underrated films of the 1980s, WITNESS is a heartfelt exploration of America's Amish community. The Amish are a Christian group who shun modern-day technology in favour of a simple life. Into their midst is thrown Harrison Ford, a tough city cop who must learn to cope with their insular society.

The thriller aspects, while wonderfully handled, come second to the film's exploration of Amish culture. Peter Weir is at his best here, directing some sublime scenes (who can forget the barn raising sequence?) and eliciting strong performances from his entire cast. Ford is fine, but it's Kelly McGillis and particularly Lukas Haas who shine as the god-fearing folk who find themselves propelled into a world of violence and the unknown.

Pretty much everything you could want from a good film.

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