The Mosquito Coast (Zaentz)

 (1,017)6.61 h 58 min1986X-RayPG
Based on a best-selling novel, this is the story of one man's attempt to create a utopian existence in the rain forest for his family.
Peter Weir
Harrison FordRiver PhoenixHelen Mirren
English [CC]
Audio languages
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Supporting actors
Conrad RobertsMartha PlimptonAndre GregoryDick O'Neill
Jerome Hellman
Warner Bros.
PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
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4.2 out of 5 stars

1017 global ratings

  1. 59% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 19% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 13% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 4% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 5% of reviews have 1 stars

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Top reviews from the United States

lilbitzReviewed in the United States on June 25, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Harrison Ford's BEST performance!
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A cult classic for anyone who's said "if that happens, I'm moving to another country!" Ali Fox is a fictional character that I rooted for, due to his insightful observations of the world around him, his courage, but then I found myself seeing how fragile that passionate line is when one threads their family through more sacrifices than anyone could ever thrive in...let alone cope with. Fox is a disgruntled American who takes his family to the Mosquito Coast and builds a cooling system, lives off the land, and colonized a rural village while ranting & raving "Ice is CIVILIZATION!" It's not until Fox, unwittingly, encourages a group of rebels to seek refuge in his personal oasis that things start to go really wrong. He also gets into some biblical confrontations with a preacher, who's colonizing his own end of the coast. The music is a haunting synthesizer from Maurice Jarre (Dr. Zhivago, Beyond the Thunderdome) and Peter Weir directs. Original story by Paul Theroux. Story ends a lil different from the book, but so much remained true to the written story (word for word on Fox's rant at times) that it's forgivable it doesnt end with Fox's eye getting torn out by a seagull after his body was tossed into a garbage heap. I had not learned that this was a fictional story until the internet came about because the book started off with the writer interviewing Charlie Fox in jail. That never happened. Like...ever. Just a great story about taking your problems to a new place and end up confronting everything you're angry about...only to become another places problem. This could be a great book/movie for anyone who thinks they know how to do it better, but only on their terms.
8 people found this helpful
KatReviewed in the United States on January 9, 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
The film aged well. Still holds up for today’s theme
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The themes of the movie still resonate even all these years later. Great cast. And rarely do movies with characters that have political views as part of a driving force behind the narrative, hold up over time. But the movie could have been about a family in current times. This movie when I first saw it when it came out left a deep impression on me, but as a much older person I resonate with it differently and the film is worth rewatching. I am truly glad I made this purchase.
3 people found this helpful
Zack Ha-RiaReviewed in the United States on July 5, 2018
4.0 out of 5 stars
Not that well known of a film, but still worth watching once.
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It's such a shame that River Phoenix died so young, like most if not all of his other films, he's great in this. A conflicted character that eventually becomes torn between the love for his father, and the victim of his father's downfall into ego-driven madness. All-around great acting, the mood and pacing were to my tastes, although it could seem slower for other people. It's more a philosophical drama about rejecting the modern world so I know it won't be everyone's cup of tea. Not something I'd rewatch frequently, only watched recently since I hadn't seen it since it original release. Would recommend to watch it once, at least.
5 people found this helpful
Gary W. PhelpsReviewed in the United States on September 18, 2015
5.0 out of 5 stars
The Mosquito Coast
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There is more to Harrison Ford and River Phoenix than just Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Helen Mirren as the devoted Wife tops this
movie also. There is a dark side to Genius and heroism as Harrison Ford played the lead role of an eccentric, brilliant inventor with 9 patents - and 6 pending approval. The inventor takes his wife and 4 children into the remote jungles on the Mosquito Coast of Central America with the intent to carve out a new society. This adventure includes elements of true life in regards to native tribes, roving bands of robbers/squatters and the hostile environment of a jungle with a river delta that evolve into a real test of survival. The conclusion of this movie demonstrates tragedy is equal in the outcome to success. Jerome Hellman s' production is a marvelous adaptation of Paul Theroux's bestseller.
9 people found this helpful
Meri Reviewed in the United States on February 9, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Progress happens no matter where you go, buddy.
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One of Ford's most underrated roles. And who doesn't miss River Phoenix? Great story and VERY applicable to today's world. I very much wanted to offer sunscreen and bug spray to everyone in the room while we watched this.
7 people found this helpful
ThomasLReviewed in the United States on April 10, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Mirren and Ford are excellent. Must See
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My wife and I both truly enjoy this movie. Helen Mirren is fantastic. This is in my opinion Harrison Ford's best performance. Additional cast members Martha Plimpton and River Phoenix do a very fine job. Shot in Belize so visually impressive. Not a "Swiss Family Robinson" film. And it will require parental explanation if view as a family. But worth taking the time to explain the tougher parts. Both of our children watched with us and they are all grown up now and just fine. Disc came from this seller in perfect condition, far superior to what I was expecting. And it arrived timely.
Robin ScottReviewed in the United States on June 1, 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
How Did I Miss This 30 Years Ago?
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I am an avid Harrison Ford fan. I have heard of this movie but could never find it for free. Prime Video is a winner in this household. I loved the Swiss Family Robinson Disney movie when I was a child. The Mosquito Coast was similar but more adventurous as only Ford can pull off. His acting is superb and I was not expecting the ending. Great Family Movie or a Just For Fun entertainment movie. Loved it.
YucaipaDanReviewed in the United States on November 29, 2014
5.0 out of 5 stars
An Harrison Ford Classic!
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A marvelous film, with extremely wonderful acting, writing & gorgeous settings! It's message, I think still completely applies to this day, & it's from the early 80s! A young & vibrant , Harrison Ford, & Helen Mirren play wonderfully off each other! A strong supporting role, solidly performance by a gifted young River Phoenix, who left us way way too soon! It's not a conventional movie, but I feel fabulously well made! It is based on the novel by Paul Theroux. The film tells the story of a family that leaves the United States and tries to find a happier and simpler life in the jungles of Central America. However, their jungle paradise quickly turns into a dystopia as their stubborn father's behavior becomes increasingly erratic and aggressive. It was shot in the cities of Cartersville and Rome in Georgia, in addition to Baltimore, Maryland, and Belize.

6 people found this helpful
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