Witness (1985) - Crime, Drama, Romance

Hohum Score



When a young Amish boy is sole witness to a murder, policeman John Book goes into hiding in Amish country to protect him until the trial.

IMDB: 7.4
Director: Peter Weir
Stars: Harrison Ford, Kelly McGillis
Length: 112 Minutes
PG Rating: R
Reviews: 23 out of 195 found boring (11.79%)

One-line Reviews (131)

"Witness", with its interesting characters, its absorbing story of murder, corruption and doomed love and its marvellous acting performances, is tremendously enjoyable to watch and leaves a lasting impression.

The movie gets off to business with a gripping murder and Samuel's clever escape from being found by the killer.

Breathtaking beauty.

The romance between Ford and McGillis was forced and the end was predictable.

The result is a touching and, yet gripping, film.

While the formula of the tough city copy falling in love with the Amish boy's mother (Kelly McGillis) is predictable, the performances are so convincing it pulls the audience closer to the characters and sets the standard for such films.

In short, a highly satisfying, richly themed, and multifaceted film which is well worth watching.

Not probable I know, but much more entertaining.

There are many memorable scenes in this movie, from the boy hiding in the bathroom stall as a murder takes place; Ford slugging some goon who was making fun of the Amish; Ford and McGillis dancing in the hayloft to an old rock 'n roll tune; the Amish lifestyles and the raising of the barn; and the suspenseful ending.

The murder scene was poor, lack of suspense and uninspiring, even if it is the key scene of the film, or is it?

A Genuinely Dramatic And Suspenseful Thriller .

) but I did not quite sense the reason for his reciprocation because Rachel did seem pretty dull and half taken.

'Witness', the film itself, is like its title: Stunning, clear, and heartfelt.

"Witness", the film itself, is like its title: Stunning, clear, and heartfelt.

Directed by Peter Weir (Green Card, The Mosquito Coast, The Truman Show) made an fascinating thriller that is also a forbidden love story, drama and some moments of unexpected comedy.

A high recommendation to this incredible suspenseful and touchingly romantic movie, with its engaging plot, Amish backdrop, conflicted cultures, wonderful music and cinematography.

The Amish remain isolated from the world to this day, even though we are now in the 21st century..2005. But this movie is well-written, quite suspenseful and interesting to watch.

This is a profound and exciting thriller.

It's a very slow paced and uneventful movie, that being said it's not necessarily a bad movie.

Suspenseful with effective romantic quality .

Viewers looking for an out-and-out crime thriller will doubtless find "Witness" boring.


Entertaining, well made drama that mixes forbidden romance and thriller nicely.

We can't really take our eyes off this character and either the other two mentioned above, but that what makes Witness all the more enjoyable.

It's a good if unremarkable film, hampered somewhat by an obligatory and unnecessary love story that merely serves to slow things down.

Decent Flick That Comes Across A Bit Formulaic .

Some of the most intriguing scenes contrast the Amish lifestyle with that of the modern world such as the deep-focus shots of the horse-drawn Amish buggies with semi-trailers thundering by in the background.

After the boy identifies a police officer as the murderer, a predictable twist requires the lead investigator, Harrison Ford, to go into hiding with the witness and the mother.

Weir also captures some beautiful, sometimes breathtaking, shots of the scenery.

Kelly McGillis is also riveting as the little boy's mother.

There is a standard cliché in many action movies, in which a protagonist, having stoically endured the abuse of a bully or bullies, finally reaches his boiling point, lashes out, and gives the antagonist his comeuppance, usually to the delight of the audience.

The writing has a familiar structure that is off putting, but has a gripping and layered screenplay that is well constructed.

The Action Sequences Were Fast Paced & They Were Still Kind Of Violent Even 25 Years After They Were Released(I Don't Mean In A Gory Way).

If you witness this film, you will find it most touching and thrilling, a terrific movie.

This is an amazing and suspenseful film that also has fantastic performances by everyone in this film.

There are so many lulls that you sometimes wish you could wake up director Weir and remind him that he was supposedly making a thriller.

Another Harrison Ford Masterpiece,That's Taut And Extremely Suspenseful, With An Oscar Worthy Perfromance From Harrison Ford.

The sound effects are sharp with stunning cinematography and plausible background score.

The premise is intriguing.

As other reviews have noted, she does not have an excess of spoken dialog, but her physical acting, in particular her eyes and face, is incredibly evocative and moving.

It's just a fascinating, wonderfully made piece of cinema that will hold its place in the history of celluloid.

I'd probably had 6 or 7 beers by the time the previews were over, and I still managed to stay awake for the whole thing.

Why is he just staring at people That's makes me really mad This is one of the worst kids actor I've ever seenAnd know let me talk about the worst thing in this movie It's the " Farms " scenes The movie gets veeeeery slow here And there's not even 0.00001% of suspense as I said before at this point this movie The movie will turns from an action movie to a F****** slow romantic movie there is a scene where " ford " is milking a cow Oh my Lord .......

What results is an intense investigative journey, landing Book in Amishland outside of Philadelphia, where he meets and has a brief affair with a comely Amish lass apparently in need of more than spiritual solace.

There isn't a whole lot of action in this movie, but there are some gritty and suspenseful scenes that add to the excitement of the movie.

So many memorable scenes to list them all, a dazzling cinematography and gripping atmosphere "Witness" is a heart-pounding experience on many levels, that I never forgot since I was 10?

That story takes a back seat and the pace gets slower and the movie gets extremely boring.

Last year Witness celebrated its quarter century so when I watched it again I was prepared for a disappointment that failed to materialize and I found it - with the usual reservations - as enjoyable as the first time round.

If this movie was released for the first time nowadays, it would just be discarded as propaganda, as it basically is.

In a decade when chills and spills were almost always involving teens having premarital sex and being sliced and diced by nameless, masked killers, "Witness" had a new angle to draw upon -- and it's about a hundred times more thrilling, and believable, than any of the other films released during the era.

A great movie, and well worth watching!

" This isn't "exciting" for the most part, but it's a very pleasant and enjoyable movie to watch.

The Amish people are boring, Kelly McGillis is disappointing, and Danny Glover lacks the material to really make a lasting impression.

It's an interesting and mostly entertaining film about a little Amish boy, Samuel (Lukas Haas) who witnesses the of a cop at the hands of a dirty cop named McFee (Danny Glover - Lethal Weapon).

Overall the film starts well but becomes too slow as it focuses on the culture clash and the romance.

The little details about Amish culture and how Book fits in with them are fascinating.

Enjoyably slow moving with a great musical score.

This movie has action, romance, and is a very enjoyable movie (so are The Fugitive and Air Force One).

What follows is intense and suspenseful on a Hitchcockian level, as it uses a clever trick to make Samuel miraculously escape from the menace of Glover's character.

Everyone remembers the barn raising scene, but the moment where Book and Rachel dance in the dimly lit barn to the wonderfully slow cover of "(What a) Wonderful World" is a stunning and excellent scene, perfectly capturing the emotion between the two characters in a way just about everyone in the audience should be able to fondly relate to.

Fascinating glimpse into an alternative America .

It is a very enjoyable drama which contains elements of both crime and romance that manage to balance out very nicely in this despite how different the tones of the romantic scenes and the crime scenes are.

All the characters were fantastic, and the story is extremely gripping, plus Harrison Ford is simply incredible in this!.

Peter Weir does a brilliant job here, with wonderful camera work, great angles, and keeping the film, extremely engrossing and suspenseful throughout!.

This is an extremely exciting, groundbreaking idea.

Overall, Witness is a beautifully shot film that has some intense scenes especially in the beginning and the end.

The intriguing contrast between mainstream American society and the elusive Amish culture is the main thing that differentiates Witness from other films.

A Wonderfully Poignant, Suspenseful Film .

In addition to being gripping and cinematically flawless (goof's aside), Witness contains one of the best on-screen kisses in the history of film.

Weir delivers a powerful and romantic story, an engaging film of different style, mixing two different cultures, the simplicity of the Amish lifestyle with the urban culture and fashion...

It's also very entertaining.

However, things do tend to slow down when Book gets back to the Amish community.

The costume and art designing is well detailed with stunning live locations and amazing camera work that offers aesthetic pleasure.

The clash of cultures is compelling and handled well.

The film itself is also good, suspenseful, thrilling, and well directed.

While in the midst of shooting the Indiana Jones series, Harrison Ford decided to make Witness, a slow thriller that basically just highlights how good the Amish are and how barbaric most others are.

Nominations for Best Actor (Ford), Art Direction, Cinematography, Director, Score and Best Picture..) is quiet provoking.. thrilling and entertaining.. I highly recommend it..If you look carefully, you'll spot Viggo Mortensen in his screen debut.. as Moses Hochleitner, Daniel's little brother...

Absorbing and thoroughly deserving of its Best Picture and Best Director (Peter Weir) nomination.

A wonderful movie (sorry for the cliche) .

A break in the thrilling suspense and action sees Ford seek refuge and convincingly adjust to life in the boy and his mother's Amish community (set in a place called Intercourse, something which never failed to amuse me when I stayed last year).

He must adapt, obviously, and the movie shifts gears from a good detective story to a slow moving adaptation story.

A ho-hum ending does not help either as it takes away from some of the good things done earlier in the film.

Though it obeys some of the Hollywood formulas, "Witness" proves to be one of the most entertaining, exciting thrillers of all time.

This is another Harrison Ford masterpiece, that's taut and extremely suspenseful, with an Oscar worthy performance from Harrison Ford and i say Go see it immediately!.

Thus, 'Witness' is neither romantic or exciting.

Highly psychological and slow paced Witness makes an interesting view from start to finish, touching issues such as trust, family bonds, forbidden love and what it feels like to be a cop, innocent and on the run.

I highly recommend it.

Much of the action in the Amish village is boring and the romance between Book and Rachel doesn't really convince.

I mean, there was happy and cheery music, and there was also a suspenseful and tense piece of music.

It's been done before MANY times but this was well-done and is compelling.

What is fascinating is the several contrasts between city life and country life, between the peacefulness of the Amish and the violence of Book's world, between his loud personality and the shyness of the Amish.

The film features striking scenes and a score that I found enjoyable even though it frequently had synthesizers in it.

The film gets kudos for very good acting, a nicely relaxed film style and a great story with a very exciting ending.

The final showdown with the killers makes Witness even more compelling viewing, and certainly proves the point that not everyone is to be trusted...

If you're looking for a movie with no story and just action, then this isn't the movie for you.

For the ending, the natural thriller pace comes back, it's intense too because we know Book is a good guy who's protective of his hosts.

When "Witness" originally played in theaters, so much promise was built up by the intriguing scenario--and so much good will was brought forth by the combination of Harrison Ford in the lead and the fish-out-of-water story elements--that nobody seemed to mind much when the movie derailed near the end.

This is a supremely lovely film, very touching and thrilling, that most any fan, casual or dedicated, will appreciate.

The only time I felt connected to the story was when the bell rang in the third act and helped arrived, other than that, it was honestly a borefest.

A terrifically thrilling beginning and ending, and the middle of the picture is a sensitive, poignant exploration of the differences in the cultures.

Kelly McGillis is captivating as Rachel, a woman who feels a shadow of confusion crossing her mind...

With a compelling story, excellent performances, and assured direction, Witness remains one of the most successful examples of the romantic thriller.

This is another Harrison Ford Masterpiece, that's taut and extremely suspenseful, with an Oscar worthy performance from Harrison Ford!.

Well written, maybe a few dull dialogs and a couple of dull and forced situations (an important and dull plot turn) there is no complains about it good quality.

The crime itself is mundane: an Amish boy witnesses the gruesome murder of an undercover cop; Detective John Book investigates and finds out corruption inside the police; he runs for his life and hides amidst the Amish.

Peter Weir's film about culture clash and an a mediation of violence in some of the most dangerous cities in America has culminated into a exciting, original, and even, powerful movie that I think is one of the most entertaining thrillers of the 1980's.

A very engaging, at times scarily tense in thriller style, with a great balance of male-female tenderness with nuances deeply respectful of the Amish' values.

Witness the boredom of an 80's "drama" .


Of the many movies I have reviewed on Amazon thus far, "Witness" is a strange one in that while it does contain some great scenes, it is (at its core) quite formulaic and very much a product of its times (i.

What a waste of time .

The climax is once again intense to match the opening scene.

Unbelieveably predictable with the best method of despatching of a foe is with corn.

But, despite these difficulties, Peter Weir did manage to direct a very compelling film.

This Film Is A Classic Action Film Now & Enjoyable...

Harrison Ford's performance is nuanced note-perfect; an ordinary, uninteresting policeman changes into an extraordinary, gentle neighbor.

It's a movie worth watching just for the fact that is first and one of the few films to focus on Amish culture.

Excellent story line, exciting, suspenseful, tender, true honor and heroism, romantic, great acting, superb casting, beautiful scenery and soundtrack.

This movie is not particularly deep, the Amish on screen probably don't accurately depict real-life Amish, but it is still a very enjoyable and fun movie to watch.

The toilet scene alone illustrates the symbiosis between the engaging atmosphere of the film and its intelligent writing, winning Oscars over masterpieces of originality such as "The Purple Rose of Cairo" or "Back to the Future".

The film makes a transition into the suspenseful crime/drama to a kind of comedy with a romantic love interest between Book and Rachel.

On the weaknesses front, we have implausibilities, a formulaic story development (a typical corrupt cop movie), a mixture between thriller and educational drama that does not exactly work, lots of long dialogue-free moments that should be inspiring, but are boring in quite a few cases (eg the barn scenes), some weak humour and a bad lack of thrills.

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.

It's suspenseful and artistully beautiful at the right times.

The movie follows the seemingly pointless hiding in an Amish community of a detective (Harrison Ford) who is investigating a murder witnessed by a young boy from the community.

It is an example of typical, cliché, audience-driven approach.

One of the most exciting thrillers so far.

Very suspenseful, some romance and some good jokes.

Once Ford goes to stay with the family in the country, however, the film tends to get a little slow, as it relies too much on the tired-out plot concept of forbidden love and why Ford cannot be with the Amish woman, with whom he has fallen in love.

Aside from that,the movie has got some action, some romance, a few drips of comedy, and a lot of fascinating insight into a culture we know very little about.

Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this was a pretty good crime-drama which had an enjoyable plot, interesting scenery, good acting and a nice musical score.