St. Helens

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"Dramatization of the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens."
  • PG
  • 1981
  • 1 hr 30 min
  • 6.1  (663)

"St. Helens," a disaster film from 1981, is based on the real-life events leading up to the eruption of Mount St. Helens in Washington state on May 18, 1980. The movie follows Harry Randall Truman, played by Art Carney, an elderly innkeeper in the area who refuses to evacuate despite the warnings of impending danger. David Huffman stars as George Kogan, a volcanologist who comes to study Mount St. Helens and warns the surrounding towns of the danger. Cassie Yates plays Joanie, a journalist covering the events.

The movie begins with stunning aerial shots of the pristine forests surrounding Mount St. Helens, with ominous music building in the background. Harry Truman's inn is introduced as a charming place where locals come to drink and have a good time. However, as the film goes on, it becomes clear that the looming danger of the volcano is a real threat to Harry and his inn.

George Kogan is introduced as a passionate volcanologist who becomes increasingly concerned with the activity he sees on Mount St. Helens. He tries to convince the local government to evacuate the area, but they are hesitant to disrupt the livelihoods of the townspeople. Cassie Yates' character, Joanie, provides a good perspective on how the media covers natural disasters as she tries to balance reporting on the situation without causing widespread panic.

As the days pass, tension builds as the situation becomes more dangerous. We see Harry Truman refusing to leave his home despite the warnings of his friends and family. George Kogan's warnings become more urgent as the volcano shows signs of erupting. The movie shows how difficult it can be to convince people to evacuate during a natural disaster, especially when the community's livelihood is at stake.

The final act of the movie features the eruption of Mount St. Helens, with impressive special effects for a film made in the 80s. The destruction caused by the eruption is shown in a powerful way, with the townspeople and Harry Truman realizing the severity of the situation. The film ends with a somber but hopeful note, as the town begins to rebuild and reflect on the tragedy they experienced.

Overall, "St. Helens" is a well-made disaster film that does justice to the real-life events it portrays. The performances by the three main actors are strong, particularly Art Carney as the stubborn Harry Truman. The movie provides insight into how natural disasters can affect communities and the challenges of trying to prevent a catastrophe. It's an engaging and emotional film that's worth watching for anyone interested in the history of the Mount St. Helens eruption.

St. Helens
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 30 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.1  (663)