Wolf Lake (1980)

R   |    |  Drama, Thriller

Wolf Lake (1980) Poster

War veterans visit a lakeside cabin for a week of shooting, drinking, etc. but find the cabin being looked after by a young caretaker named David. When David's status as a war deserter is revealed, all hell breaks loose.

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  • Rod Steiger and Richard Herd in Wolf Lake (1980)
  • David Huffman in Wolf Lake (1980)
  • Rod Steiger in Wolf Lake (1980)
  • David Huffman and Robin Mattson in Wolf Lake (1980)
  • Rod Steiger and Jerry Hardin in Wolf Lake (1980)
  • Rod Steiger in Wolf Lake (1980)

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21 August 2011 | lazarillo
"Wolf Lake"
A trio of American World War II vets take a hunting trip in the rural Canadian woods where they find out the American caretaker of the place they are staying is a Vietnam deserter (David Huffman). Thanks to a lot of alcohol and the influence of the embittered, flag-waving leader of trio (Rod Steiger), what starts out as a mere "generation gap" political disagreement, quickly escalates into a violent, armed conflict.

Rod Steiger is excellent as the vicious leader of the veterans whose blind patriotism and narrow-minded prejudices leave almost everyone in the cast dead by the end. His more weak-willed friends are only along for the ride at first, but they too are quickly caught up in the escalating violence. And adding no small amount of fuel to the fire is Robin Mattson, as the Huffman character's sexy girlfriend. Playing an only slightly more sympathetic variation on the malicious tease she played in her most famous film "Bonnie's Kids", her character takes her showers outdoors, even with all the drunken, dirty old men lingering about, and when she catches Steiger staring at her bra-less chest, she tauntingly lifts up her shirt to give him a better look at her yummy breasts. This is not to say she deserves what happens to her--the tragedy here is that all the characters are actually sympathetic to SOME extent, even if only Huffman approaches ever really being too likable.

With several gun battles, a gang rape, a wilderness chase, and lots of explosions, this works pretty well as a violent action movie. But it is one of those dark, cynical 70's ones like "Deliverance", "Southern Comfort", or "Who'll Stop the Rain?" that show only the ultimate futility and stupidity of violence. Definitely recommended, especially to fans of Rod Steiger, Robin Mattson, and/or downbeat 70's-era action fare.

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$970,000 (estimated)

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