The Deer Hunter


The Deer Hunter

Critics Consensus

Its greatness is blunted by its length and one-sided point of view, but the film's weaknesses are overpowered by Michael Cimino's sympathetic direction and a series of heartbreaking performances from Robert De Niro, Meryl Streep, and Christopher Walken.



Total Count: 68
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Movie Info

The Deer Hunter moves from the steel mills outside of Pittsburgh to the mountains of Pennsylvania to the jungles of Vietnam as it explores the upheaval faced by a tight-knit group of Russian Americans when three of their number enlist to serve in Vietnam.

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John Cazale
as Stanley
Chuck Aspegren
as Peter "Axel" Axelrod
Shirley Stoler
as Steven's Mother
Mady Kaplan
as Axel's Girl
Amy Wright
as Bridesmaid
Mary Ann Haenel
as Stan's Girl
Richard Kuss
as Linda's Father
Joe Grifasi
as Bandleader
Victoria Karnafel
as Sad-Looking Girl
Jack Scardino
as Cold Old Man
Joseph Strand
as Bingo Caller
Paul D'Amato
as Sergeant
Jane Colette Disko
as Girl Checker
Michael Wollet
as Stock Boy
Robert Beard
as World War Veteran
Joe Dzizmba
as World War Veteran
Tom Becker
as Doctor
Dale Burroughs
as Embassy Guard
Parris Hicks
as Sergeant
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News & Interviews for The Deer Hunter

Critic Reviews for The Deer Hunter

All Critics (68) | Top Critics (15)

  • Stark and haunting, and still unbearable to watch at times, The Deer Hunter remains a powerful movie experience.

    Feb 27, 2019 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…
  • To my mind, The Deer Hunter is a major achievement in American movies. And I fervently hope that the American public won't vote me wrong.

    Dec 17, 2018 | Full Review…
  • While it's fair to argue that The Deer Hunter contains moments of brilliance, the film as a whole is undone by its length.

    Oct 7, 2018 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • The movie won five Oscars and, if anything, improves with age.

    Mar 2, 2015 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

    Kate Muir

    Times (UK)
    Top Critic
  • It has no more moral intelligence than the Clint Eastwood action pictures, yet it's an astonishing piece of work, an uneasy mixture of violent pulp and grandiosity, with an enraptured view of common life -- poetry of the commonplace.

    Mar 2, 2015
  • In trying to measure the devastating impact of Vietnam on the lives of three American soldiers, Cimino brings home the true horror of that senseless conflict in a way that the 6 O'Clock News never could.

    Feb 18, 2015 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

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