Distant Thunder

Watch Distant Thunder

  • R
  • 1988
  • 1 hr 54 min
  • 5.7  (821)

Distant Thunder is a 1988 American drama film written by Robert Stitzel and directed by Rick Rosenthal. The movie follows the story of a grounded Vietnam veteran named Mark Lambert, played by John Lithgow, who lives in Maine with his family. Mark is suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, and he can't seem to escape from the traumatic experiences in Vietnam.

The film opens with a scene of Mark having a nightmare where he relives his experiences in the jungle. He is seen walking into a Vietnamese hut in the pouring rain, and he encounters a young girl who reminds him of his daughter. This nightmare is one of many that Mark experiences throughout the movie, and it is a clear indication of the psychological trauma that he has been inflicted with.

Mark's wife, Kate, played by Kerrie Keane, is very concerned about his mental health, and she urges him to seek help. However, Mark is hesitant to do so, and he tries to cope with his feelings on his own. He spends most of his time hunting and fishing in the woods, and he isolates himself from his family and friends.

Mark's son, Scott, played by Ralph Macchio, also has to deal with the consequences of his father's PTSD. Scott is a high school student who dreams of going to college, but his father's mental health issues make it difficult for him to focus on his studies. As a result, Scott starts to become frustrated and begins to resent his father for not being there for him and his family.

The movie touches on topics such as war, PTSD, and family relationships. It portrays the difficulties that veterans faced when they returned from the Vietnam War and the impact that it had on their families. Through Mark's character, the movie shows how the trauma of war can affect a person's mental health, and how it can strain relationships.

The film's pacing is slow and measured, allowing the emotions and tensions to unfold at a natural pace. The movie's tone is serious, and the director doesn't shy away from depicting the raw emotional pain that the characters go through. There are no moments of levity or humor, which may make it difficult for some viewers to engage with the story.

The cinematography in Distant Thunder is excellent, and the movie's naturalistic visuals are a highlight. The shots of the Maine countryside and forests are mesmerizing, highlighting the beauty of the landscape. The sound design is also noteworthy, with the sounds of the forest and the rain adding to the film's immersive and moody tone.

The performances in the movie are outstanding, with John Lithgow delivering a memorable performance as a troubled Vietnam veteran. He embodies the pain and anguish that his character experiences, and his portrayal is both touching and heartbreaking. The chemistry between Lithgow and Macchio is also notable, with their father-son dynamic feeling genuine and heartfelt.

In conclusion, Distant Thunder is a powerful and emotionally charged movie that deals with complex issues such as PTSD and strained family relationships. Although the pacing is slow and there isn't much in terms of humor, the movie makes up for it with its impressive performances, cinematography, and sound design. The film's message is timely and poignant, and it is a must-watch for those interested in exploring the impact of war on the human psyche.

Distant Thunder is a 1988 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 54 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 5.7.

Distant Thunder
Where to Watch Distant Thunder
Distant Thunder is available to watch, stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Distant Thunder for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 54 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    5.7  (821)